8 year old son with autism self-harming — Scope | Disability forum
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8 year old son with autism self-harming

kidzaware Community member Posts: 4 Listener
edited April 2017 in Autism and neurodiversity
This discussion was created from comments split from: Hi, I'm Will Chadwick, a behaviour advisor.


  • kidzaware
    kidzaware Community member Posts: 4 Listener
    What would you suggest I do when my son aged 8 with autism is self harming himself and is hurting his small brother I do not receive any support
  • will22
    will22 Community member Posts: 31 Courageous
    Hi kidzaware,

    Sorry for the delay in getting back to you I've been away.

    That's a big question to answer without more info. Can you flesh your son out a bit for me? What's his communication level like? When does his self injury occur? tell me everything you can, as much as possible. Don't worry about getting it in any order just give me an idea of what your son is like and when the self injury/other behaviours occur.
  • ASDMum
    ASDMum Community member Posts: 8 Listener
    Hello Kidzaware - not sure if I can help - but I can empathise. We have found this has got better with time and our son's own understanding. Also as he has got older he has developed his understanding of his emotional response. That said - we do still have issues and where he used to hit out at family members he does direct anxiety outbursts to himself as he gets older. Does your son head bang, bite himself, seek sensory feedback in anxiety/high arousal? Without knowing how verbal, sensory seeking  etc your son is it is hard to be specific, but trying to direct his physical need to something less harmful (like a punchbag - that didnt work for us!) is what some advise. Some manage to get their kids to move from themselves to bashing cushions but we found that didn't go down at all well!. How much is anxiety exhibiting with aggressive actions and how much is sensory seeking? We found sensory changers a massive help - spent a lot of time with cold water bowls, flour, theraputty (can carry around), sand pit, being outside in calm space (like woods), and time in a swing (and other vestibular stuff like trampolines, hammock), baths/showers at funny times of the day, music, all helped. What calms your son? Our best thing ever has been a Southpaw Airwalker(google it) - very expensive- doesn't look special,
     but worth every penny if your house allows it. Not sure if this helps as it can be so child specific! Good luck and I am sure it will get better.
  • Alex
    Alex Posts: 1,305 Pioneering
    Hi @kidzaware

    How is everything going? How is your son? Let us know if we can help.


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