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Diagnosis Mistakes » Parental fears about toddler behavior often unfounded
 

Parental fears about toddler behavior often unfounded

There are many behaviors in infants and toddlers that may give rise to a fear that the child has some form of mental health condition. In particular, there is a loss of fear of autism or ADHD in parents. However, parents should understand that the chances are higher that it's part of normal development, and perhaps just a "cute behavior" rather than a serious condition. Although parents should be vigilant about monitoring all aspects of their child's development and mental health, they should also take care not to over-worry and miss out on some of the delights of parenthood. For example, a young child that screams when you open his car door to take him out, then makes you put him back into the car to repeat it, so that he can open the car door himself, is not necessarily showing signs of autism or OCD, nor indeed any mental illness. There is a small possibility that it's an abnormality (a chance that increases with age of the child), but it's also the type of behavior seen in many normal children. See the introduction to autism and introduction to ADHD.

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