Children go through many different developmental stages when they are growing up. A child’s development is not only affected by genetics but also many environmental and cultural factors. These factors also affect their ability to move from one stage to another successfully.
This means that they are either able or not able to achieve all the milestones identified for one stage. Knowing child psychology helps a parent to understand if their kid is progressing at a steady pace and if there is a need for early intervention.
In this article, we will find out why it is necessary to understand child psychology and how it can help in proper physical and cognitive development of your child.
What is Child Psychology?
One of the most important branches of psychology, child psychology is the study of children’s behavior and their mental development from the time they are still in their mother’s womb to adolescence.
It covers not only their physical but also their cognitive and emotional development through the years. This branch is very similar to developmental psychology but it is considered a separate field because children tend to think very differently from adults. And as such, they cannot be judged in the same manner.
This study has lead scientists to believe that understanding child psychology is even more difficult and complex because every child is unique.
Why is it Important to Study Child Psychology?
It is now a known fact that childhood plays a very important role in determining how a person grows up to be. Their behavior and their attitude towards life as a whole is very much a reflection of how they spent their childhood and under what circumstances they grew up.
A child may go undetected if he or she is suffering from psychological problems because of their environment or state of affairs. But these issues can later develop into serious and sometimes irredeemable problems.
The answer to why is it necessary to understand child psychology lies in this philosophy and makes us study different contexts of this important branch of psychology.
Things to Consider when Understanding Child Psychology?
Since there are three main contexts of this branch of psychology: social, cultural and socioeconomic, we need to take into account some important factors that may have an impact on a child’s development.
From genetics and environmental factors to more complex and deep-rooted subjects like gender roles, language, and sexual and cognitive development, the study covers a number of dynamics. If a child is suspected to be not growing normally, all these areas need to be considered if parents decide to seek psychotherapy for their child.
Child psychology covers the following aspects of a child’s development during the early years:
The first few years of a child’s life are composed of a sequence of events or milestones they must achieve at particular stages. When they are able to hold their head up, start crawling, learn to grip, learn to walk and start talking are all developmental milestones that parents must observe.
If there is an irregularity in this pattern, it might indicate an underlying psychological problem. Early intervention helps to address these issues and make sure that your child does not lag behind in certain areas.
Cognitive development covers everything from the understanding of the environment or surroundings to memory, decision making and problem solving. Children are naturally inquisitive, and they learn by using basic reasoning and observation.
However, if you notice anything abnormal about their intellectual abilities and thought processes, it’s time to consult a psychologist. The problem may not seem very big at the moment but if it is left untreated, it may influence a child’s normal development.
How a child expresses their emotions and how well they mix up with other children are things that fall under emotional or social development. You, as a parent, can observe your child at their ability to express emotions like sadness, joy, surprise, anger and fear.
If they are unable to show any reaction or are seemingly unperturbed when they are supposed to show a response, they are probably suffering from a psychological issue.
If emotional development is impacted due to any factor, genetic or otherwise, it will leave a mark on your child’s personality, and they may not be able to hold up relationships when they grow up.
The ability to perceive your environment positively and use it to gain a great deal of knowledge is possible only when a child has no underlying psychological problem. Even if a child is perfectly normal at birth, some environmental and cultural factors may impact his or her development and that is why it is constantly needed to monitor your child’s physical as well as emotional and cognitive development.
Parents must understand that child psychology is now considered an important area of family health. It helps to take a deeper look at your child’s mental health and address some issues early on so that they would not affect their life as an adult.
A child’s, and in essence an adult’s behavior is a reflection of his or her normal or abnormal mental development during the early years. While normal physical development is crucial to a person’s success as an adult, emotional and cognitive development holds much more importance and it often goes unnoticed if a child is having some underlying psychological issues.
Their abnormal behavior is attributed mainly to their genetics and personal characteristics and most parents hope to see them as healthy adults both physically and mentally when they grow up. However, the problem is if these issues are not addressed at an early age, they tend to become larger and more complex psychological problems.
Many people look for an answer to why is it necessary to understand child psychology and therefore we have come up with this post to help them seek a suitable and useful solution.
This early intervention will surely help their child to overcome his or her emotional and cognitive shortcomings and grow up like any other normal human being.
Also read the article: How to Develop Empathy in a Child?