How to Tell if Your Child Would Benefit from Behavioural Intervention

Growing up can be challenging for children, and they’re bound to experience some emotional ups and downs. It’s completely normal to feel sad, angry, or frustrated every now and then. However, some children may display frequent signs of challenging and destructive behaviour and require additional support. As a parent, it’s essential to distinguish between regular growing pains and behavioural problems that require attention. Challenging behaviour never happens because a child is ‘naughty’, instead they may be experiencing dysregulation and are having difficulty communicating their wants, needs and emotions.

Behavioural intervention aims to identify the reasons for and help change potentially destructive or unhealthy behaviours. We do this by teaching adaptive skills which improve the overall quality of the child’s life. It can help children become less impulsive and defiant, have fewer tantrums, improve their communication, self-control and enhance their problem-solving ability and coping mechanisms. It can be especially beneficial for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Oppositional Defiance Disorder (ODD), Anxiety and related disorders.

If you are wondering whether behavioural therapy would benefit your child, it’s important to consider the following factors:


Conflicts between children and their parents are a normal part of growing up. These challenges can arise as early as the “terrible twos” and continue through their teenage years as they establish their own identities

Level of Development

It’s important to note that each child is unique, and their behaviour can be influenced by their personality and development level. Children don’t all progress at the same pace when it comes to cognitive skills, emotional regulation, language development and social skills, which can affect how they behaviour in different situations and environments. By taking these factors into account, we can gain a better understanding of children’s behaviour.


We should also consider when and where a child is acting out. Certain behaviours may be inappropriate in certain settings, and family dynamics can also play a role. Emotional stress, such as the loss of a loved one, moving to a new home, school, or disruption to the family unit can significantly impact a child’s behaviour. This change in behaviour might be temporary, or you may need to seek advice on how to help your child through this challenging time for them. While issues related to major life changes generally improve over time, some children may struggle more than others to adjust.

Warning Signs of a More Serious Problem

If a child is struggling with behavioural issues that persist for six months or longer, or not meeting their developmental milestone then it may be time to consider behavioural therapy. Early intervention allows your child to learn new skills to regulate and communicate before they develop more serious and disruptive aggressive behaviours towards themselves and others. This may include:

  • Not meeting developmental milestones
  • Not able to effectively communicate their wants and needs or express their emotions.
  • Concerns or recommendations expressed by other therapists, educators, GPs, or paediatricians.
  • Frequently causing disruptions in school.
  • Trouble making or keeping friends.
  • Emotional outbursts that aren’t appropriate for their age. A 12-year-old, for example, shouldn’t be throwing temper tantrums like a 2-year-old.
  • Refusal to change – They won’t change their behaviour no matter the consequences.
  • Aggression – They constantly break things, hurt others, or make threats.
  • No apparent remorse or empathy – They don’t seem to care about other people and their feelings.
  • Self-injury – They continually hurt themselves, such as by banging their head on a wall.

Children demonstrating any of these challenging behaviours can benefit from behaviour therapy by helping them communicate their needs, wants, thoughts and feelings and help them maintain their emotional regulation throughout the day.

Our therapists at Freedom Social Skills strive to create an atmosphere that is fun and engaging while focusing on developing effective social behaviours and communication. We use a variety of evidence-based techniques delivered through activities, such as games, play activities, and role-plays, to teach children how to interact with others in both structured and unstructured settings.

If your child has a developmental disability and struggles with the ability to manage behaviour, behaviour therapy grounded in the principles of ABA might be the right therapy for them.

ABA based programs are flexible and can be catered for each individual child’s unique skills and learning objectives. Does this sound like something that could benefit your child?

Contact us today for a discussion.

More you might like

Get In Touch Today

Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Sign up here to get the latest news and updates delivered directly to your inbox

You have Successfully Subscribed!