Items in AFP with MESH term: Child Behavior
ABSTRACT: School refusal is a problem that is stressful for children, families, and school personnel. Failing to attend school has significant short- and long-term effects on children's social, emotional, and educational development. School refusal often is associated with comorbid psychiatric disorders such as anxiety and depression. It is important to identify problems early and provide appropriate interventions to prevent further difficulties. Assessment and management of school refusal require a collaborative approach that includes the family physician, school staff, parents, and a mental health professional. Because children often present with physical symptoms, evaluation by a physician is important to rule out any underlying medical problems. Treatments include educational-support therapy, cognitive behavior therapy, parent-teacher interventions, and pharmacotherapy. Family physicians may provide psychoeducational support for the child and parents, monitor medications, and help with referral to more intensive psychotherapy.
ABSTRACT: Sleep issues, thumb sucking, coping with picky eating, and determining if a child is ready for school are common concerns of families with young children. Information and resources to help counsel on these topics include recommendations from the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, the American Dental Association, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Infant sleep times can be prolonged by unmodified or graduated extinction, maintaining routines, scheduled awakenings, and parent education. Thumb sucking can be addressed with positive reinforcement, alternative comfort measures, reminders, and child involvement in solutions. Worry about picky eating can be eased by educating parents about the dietary requirements of toddlers. Social and emotional factors most influence kindergarten success. Keeping children from starting school may not be in their best interest academically.
ABSTRACT: Sexual behaviors in children are common, occurring in 42 to 73 percent of children by the time they reach 13 years of age. Developmentally appropriate behavior that is common and frequently observed in children includes trying to view another person’s genitals or breasts, standing too close to other persons, and touching their own genitals. Sexual behaviors become less common, less frequent, or more covert after five years of age. Sexual behavior problems are defined as developmentally inappropriate or intrusive sexual acts that typically involve coercion or distress. Such behaviors should be evaluated within the context of other emotional and behavior disorders, socialization difficulties, and family dysfunction, including violence, abuse, and neglect. Although many children with sexual behavior prob- lems have a history of sexual abuse, most children who have been sexually abused do not develop sexual behavior prob- lems. Children who have been sexually abused at a younger age, who have been abused by a family member, or whose abuse involved penetration are at greater risk of developing sexual behavior problems. Although age-appropriate behaviors are managed primarily through reassurance and education of the parent about appropriate behavior redi- rection, sexual behavior problems often require further assessment and may necessitate a referral to child protec- tive services for suspected abuse or neglect.
AAP Issues Policy Statement on Parental Discipline of Children - Special Medical Reports