"Children learn whatever you teach them, whether you've intended for them to learn it or not. "

18 month old head -banger

Question

I have an 18 month old son that has started head banging out of anger. If he doesn't get his way, he will immediately bash his head- into the table, chair, floor, wall, whatever he is near. Most frequently, he lays himself flat on the floor and slams his head down to the floor. He will only do it once or twice, then he cries because it hurts, that's my guess. I then try to talk to him and say "I know you are mad right now. But we cannot hit our head. " I am trying to teach him safer ways to express his anger, but it all happens so fast. He has bashed his head before I can even attempt to stop him. I am scared for his safety. I worry he will seriously injure himself, or just add to the already permanent bruises on his forehead. He went through a softer head banging stage when he was about 13 months old, but that was much lighter bangs, and he would laugh when doing so. I believe that was more for attention. This issue only happens when he is really upset because he can't have his way. I am worried that he could have behavioral or mental issues that would be causing this. He has gotten much more hostile in the past few months. Along with the head banging, he bites, pulls hair and hits us (mostly his older sister). What do I do?? I'm seriously at my wits end over this, and very worried. Thanks.

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