Understanding Behavioural Problems in School-Going Children

Dr Narendra Rathi


Senior Child Specialist,

Andheri West, Mumbai

Does your little one seem restless, disruptive, or withdrawn at school? Are tantrums, meltdowns, or difficulty focusing becoming increasingly common? If you’ve found yourself nodding along, you’re not alone. Behavioural problems in school-going children are a prevalent concern for parents and educators alike. But fear not, navigating this maze doesn’t have to be overwhelming.

As a senior child specialist, practicing since more than 3 decades now, I have seen enormous increase in prevalence of these problems in kids.

Let’s dive deeper into the world of behavioural challenges, exploring their potential causes, effective coping mechanisms, and where to seek expert guidance. Remember, every child is unique, and understanding their individual needs is key to unlocking their full potential (https://medlineplus.gov/childbehaviordisorders.html).


What are the Triggers: What Causes Behavioural Issues?

Before diving into solutions, it’s crucial to understand the potential root causes of behavioural challenges. While the reasons are as diverse as children themselves, some common triggers include:

  • Developmental Delays: Sometimes, behavioural issues stem from underlying developmental delays that affect communication, social skills, or learning abilities. Early intervention from specialists like speech therapists or occupational therapists can be immensely helpful. We at Smile Children Clinic, evaluate in detail such kids to understand their issue in the first place.
  • Emotional Challenges: Anxiety, depression, and other emotional struggles can manifest as behavioural changes. If you suspect these might be at play, seeking help from a child therapist can make a significant difference.
  • Family Dynamics: Stressful family situations like divorce, financial difficulties, or parental conflict can impact children’s behaviour. Open communication and creating a supportive environment are crucial here.
  • Academic Pressure: Feeling overwhelmed by schoolwork or struggling with certain subjects can lead to frustration and disruptive behaviour. Working with teachers and tutors to find strategies for academic success can ease the pressure.


How to deal? : Effective Strategies for Coping

Now, let’s equip ourselves with some tools to manage these challenges! Remember, consistency and positive reinforcement are key. (https://www.webmd.com/parenting/types-of-behavioral-problems-in-children) .

  • Create a Structured Routine: Establishing predictable routines at home and school helps children feel safe and secure, reducing anxiety and promoting positive behaviour.
  • Open Communication: Talk openly and honestly with your child about their feelings and concerns. Listen actively and validate their emotions.
  • Positive Reinforcement: Focus on praising positive behaviour rather than dwelling on the negative. Reward them for desired actions, creating a positive feedback loop.
  • Encourage Social Interactions: Help your child develop healthy relationships with peers through playgroups, sports, or social activities.
  • Seek Professional Help: Don’t hesitate to seek guidance from a qualified professional like a pediatrician, child psychologist, therapist, or counsellor. They can provide tailored strategies and support for both you and your child. At Smile Children Clinic, we have a team of professionals to deal with these behavioural problems. We offer comprehensive assessments, diagnosis, and treatment plans tailored to each child’s needs. (foundationsmile.com, www.smileich.com) .



Remember, you’re not alone! Understanding behavioural challenges and seeking support is crucial for helping your child navigate this phase and thrive. By working together with professionals and creating a supportive environment, you can empower your child to overcome these challenges and reach their full potential (https://www.cdc.gov/childrensmentalhealth/behavior.html) .