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Head banging and biting
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Head banging and biting

Please help!

Hi there I have a 3 year old son with Down's Syndrome. He is adorable but sometimes his behaviour becomes very difficult to manage. He refuses to eat at the table with the family and if he is left to sit with with us he will escalate into a full blown tantrum ie: bang his head try to throw himself off the chair, scream inconsolably and become aggressive. He doesn't calm down and can behave like this for up to 2 hours. He will sometimes only eat if I distract him with toys or the tv. He bites, scratches, pulls hair and slaps when he is angry. Normally these episodes happen several times a day but he does have good and bad patches where sometimes it's worse, sometimes it's better. A few days ago he got into a temper because I tried to feed him his breakfast. He hit his face on the floor so hard he made his nose bleed. I'm really struggling to cope.
Can anyone suggest anything or offer any advice? Could it be possible that he also has Autistic spectrum disorder. I can't get any medical professional to take my concerns seriously. Some of them have suggested I am being an over anxious mother, but when he is seen he is mostly happy and contented. They don't see the other side of him.

Many Thanks Sarah
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I have a child with down syndrome. I also have a child with autism. Both children are wonderful boys. My child with autism was a blessing to us because it taught us how to help our son with down syndrome. Many children with down syndrome have the same sensory processing and sensitivities that children with autism do. The same therapies work wonders for children of both groups.  If you haven't already, start reading everything you can find on sensory processing disorders. "The out of sync child" is a great place to start.  Also find a great occupational therapist. I bet you will find much of the behavior you are seeing has its roots in sensory processing.  Get a good speech therapist and communication tools to use until your child develops speech.  No easy fix, but you will find it is worth it.

Warmly,
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Thank you so much for your advice that really helps. I shall look out for the book you suggested.

Many Thanks

Sarah xxx.
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My kiddo has Down Syndrome and Autism.  He was diagnosed early at the age of two.  His older brother was Autistic and then was re-diagnosed with P.D.D.(Autism spectrum)  Some doctors, for various reasons do not like to diagnose early because it could be alot of other things. You can get 2nd opinions and print out the check list for Autism symptoms and take it to several of your childs therapist to see if they recognize any symptoms from the checklist.  That way you can get unbiased documentation of his behaviors.  my prayers are with you.  But I do believe in early intervention.  His brother is proof and is high functioning.
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