No child is perfect. As much as we don’t like to think about this when we’re holding our child for the first time, they will do things that make us mad or, even worse, worried. When your child’s behavior is starting to be a cause for worry, it could be temporary. However, how do you know when your child is simply “acting out” or “going through a phase” or if it is a serious problem? Here are some signs of high risk behavior in children.
1. Decrease in Grades
This is not necessarily a concern if your child has always had difficulty in school. However, when a child starts to let their grades drop, this can be a sign of problems. This usually means that they are busy with something else, or this could be a sign of depression or other mental illness.
2. Mental Illness
Every child will have days when they are sad or a little manic. It’s important to keep track of prolonged symptoms, though. Signs of a mental illness include no longer enjoying activities that were once enjoyable, extreme mood swings, and overly aggressive behavior. Things that are immediate cause for serious evaluations immediately are self-harm or harm to others, threats of harm to themselves or others, injuring animals, and being caught with illegal substances.
3. Reckless Behavior
Sometimes a child isn’t doing poorly in school, and they don’t have a mental disorder. Sometimes, children just like to feel excitement and will do anything for that. If your child is the daredevil type, be wary that their behavior doesn’t go too far. Restraints generally don’t work, because they refuse to be contained. Being as logical as possible is your only hope.
4. Legal Trouble
Particularly at a young age, legal trouble is a huge sign of high risk behavior. The consequences are getting more dire, and, unfortunately, the child may get too accustomed to a police station.
Take legal trouble seriously and encourage your child to do so too. At this point, you no longer need to wait for a sign of high risk behavior. You are already there. Contact a criminal law firm that helps contest charges for adolescents, and talk to the school and psychiatrist to see what else you can do.
If you’re worried that your child might end up in trouble due to their behavior, take it seriously and nip it in the bud before you find yourself picking them up from a police station.