Executive function is a term used to explain brain processes needed to plan, prioritize, and organize. Executive function helps us avoid procrastination, make good decisions by avoiding impulsive behaviors, and remain on task. Research has now linked childhood aggression to deficits in executive functioning.
“The study, published in open-access journal Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience, shows that primary school children with lower executive function were more likely to show physical, relational and reactive aggression in later years, but not proactive aggression. The increased aggression — which was observed in both boys and girls — may be partly due to an increased tendency for anger in these children. The findings suggest that helping children to increase their executive functioning could reduce their aggression.”
The basis of ‘higher-level’ cognitive functions (ie, executive functions) such as inhibition, flexibility of thinking, problem solving, planning, impulse control, concept formation, abstract thinking, and creativity often arise from much simpler, ‘lower-level’ forms of cognition and behavior. It makes sense that when a child does not have impulse control and other higher-level skills, that they will be prone to aggression when becoming frustrated. Treatment should consist of creating a strong foundation of skills that enable the child to use their higher-level cognitive skills. The image below depicts the foundational stages that need to be intact in order for the higher-level cognitive functions to mature fully.
The foundational skills involved in the sensory system, sensory-motor system, and perpetual-motor systems need to be intact prior to higher-level cognitive skills being fully matured. Movement activities, brain balancing activities and primitive reflex integration are the root of the Brain Connex Therapy program. We work to fully mature the foundational systems in order to improve the cognitive functioning of each child. Maturation of the central nervous system in the proper order is important to gain full results. For children with learning difficulties it is very difficult to make gains in their higher-level skills prior to making sure their foundation is strong.
Our approach to improving the neuro-development of each child is depicted below.
We create an individualized program that works on integrating primitive reflexes through specific neuro-developmental movements. We then incorporate movements that challenge the right brain-left brain integration, crossing midline, and balance to promote improved communication of the hemispheres, improved vestibular system, thus creating the foundational skills necessary for higher-level cognitive functioning.
If your child demonstrates aggression, difficulty learning, dyspraxia, or you are not receiving the gains you have been looking for in traditional therapies, please contact us today for your free phone consultation to see if our program is a fit for you & your child.