Youth Violence & Its Causes - What Parents Can Do To Prevent It?
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Youth violence is a worldwide public health problem. Both non-fatal and fatal assaults that involve young people contribute considerably to the global burden of disability, injury, and premature death. The act deeply harms its victims, their friends, families, and communities. In this article, we'll look at what are the causes of youth violence and how to prevent it.
What Is Youth Violence?
Youth violence involves the use of physical force or power to harm or threaten anyone who is aged between 10 and 24 years. This serious health problem may impact your child's health and well-being. It can include physical fighting, threats, and bullying. Recent studies reveal that thousands of young people get victimized every day. The most affected areas are the suburban, rural, tribal, and urban.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), homicide is now the 4th leading cause of death in individuals aged between 10 and 29, with 84% of these homicides involving male victims. It's also important to note that out of 5 high school students, at least 2 are victims of cyber-harassment. Essentially, this takes place via social media platforms, such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. The other forms of violence in youths can be through hurling insults and physical harm.
What Are the Causes of Youth Violence?
On any given day, you will always find a news story regarding violence in youths. For this reason, it is the responsibility of parents and teachers to recognize these behaviors. If you have been asking yourself: What are the causes of youth violence? Here are some reasons that attribute to this intentional act.
1. Lack of Opportunity
Opportunities present a child with a sustainable future and developments. Without it, many children must settle in violence-encouraging environments if they feel helpless in striving for something better. Providing a good education, community activities, and setting goals can help a child seek a better future away from violence.
2. Unaccountability and Unsupportive Community
Unaccountability occurs when absent parental figures neglect structure and correction. The child then has no consequences, so they become prone to inappropriate behaviors. Unaccountable youths also lack protective barriers, which can lead them to environments that encourage violence. Appropriate accountability encourages a child towards constructive responses and diverts from harmful environments.
Violence in youth also tends to originate from unsafe environments in the home or community. Moreover, a lack of trusted adults to depend on encourages violence if the child feels they are helpless in their situation. Supportive environments give constructive options to children rather than violence through desperation.
3. Lack of Emotional Intelligence
Emotional intelligence is the ability to react appropriately to emotion by first understanding it. Youth who lack certain biological developments (e.g.- young children or certain disorders) or constructive learned behaviors from others (e.g.- parental figures or role models) may choose violent reactions as a means of expression or catharsis. Violence in youth can be avoided by having appropriate expectations about emotions and gradually teaching appropriate reactions.
4. Mental Illness
Mental disorders are one of the major causes of violence in youths. A kid with ODD (oppositional defiant disorder) displays traits of aggression, as this is one of the main symptoms of this mental disorder. Studies show that people with schizophrenia and schizophrenia are more likely to commit violent crimes. When someone is taking bipolar drugs and become aggressive, people often blame the medication. This is inappropriate as the main reason behind the behavior is the disorder.
5. Use of Drugs and Alcohol
Alcohol and drugs go hand in hand with acts of violence. They increase aggression by reducing fear. Teenagers use recreational drugs and alcohol to feel good. However, they don't know that it can bring about feelings of frustration and depression after long use. Such feelings can end up forcing you to exhibit some traits of violence. People who are under the influence can do anything they feel is right, even if it is the exact opposite.
How Can Parents Prevent Youth Violence?
Violence in youth is preventable, and parents can have a role in prevention. You are in a good position to profoundly and positively impact your kid to ensure that they safely flourish towards a better potential. Preventing violence in youth can include consideration of the following concepts:
- Be a Good Role Model to Your Kid
Show your child how to stay calm when they are in a situation that involves conflict. Make sure they see you making good choices when dealing with conflict. Teach your children how to control their emotions, as kids can be very reactive. Show them not to jump to conclusions when they see someone causing problems. Tell them not to rush and yell or scream at the other party. When a kid is calm, the other kid will also calm down, which can help to avoid a conflict.
- Counsel Kids and Encourage Community-Based Programs
Children with traits of aggression should receive trauma counseling sessions. These will help them manage their anger. Children who witness domestic violence at home should also consider this. Therapy works best to prevent children from becoming violent in the future. As such, you need to seek counselors who are familiar with the warning signs of youth violence. The more warning signs there are, the more urgent that your child needs therapy. Take the necessary action and seek professional counselors.
Intervention is also important as this will help to improve the system of services that currently exist for kids. Parents should ensure that they create new approaches that will make the service system responsive to the complexity of kids' lives. It should be defined and rooted in by communities. Making sure that kids who have a problem get treatment will reduce the harms of violent exposures. Treatment should also be available to prevent problem behavior as well as further involvement in violence.
- Involve Yourself in Your Child's School Affairs
Parents should believe in the education of their children. Show that you want them to do their best by interacting with their teachers once in a while. Additionally, develop a habit of sharing a deep conversation with your child and get to know them better. This does not only have to when problems arise. Community-based programs can help prevent and reduce cases of violence in youths. Encourage your teen to join positive youth development programs. They help reduce violence in youths, as they keep them occupied with useful activities. Also, this gives your child essential social skills. What's more? You could help your child to balance schoolwork and home activities.
- Share a Conversation With Your Child
Develop the habit of keeping the lines of communication open with your children. In turn, this will allow you to get involved in their schoolwork and friends too. You can use phrases like "what do you think?" Tell me more" and "What is your opinion on this matter?" You will learn more about your child's opinion and how they see a certain situation that they are facing. You can talk about matters such as violence, smoking, drugs, and sex.
- Monitor Your Children's Behavior
Parents should always know where their children are and what they are doing online to ensure that they are not exposed to content that includes violence: This is where FamiSafe comes in. The app can help you keep track of what your kids are doing whenever they are on the internet.
- Web Filter: FamiSafe comes with a feature that allows you to control which sites your children can access. That means you can restrict access to any website with content related to violence and allow access to the ones that are suitable for your kids.
- Browser History: The app also allows you to monitor your kids' browsing history when they are using their devices. FamiSafe is compatible with Mac, Windows, Kindle Fire, and Android devices. What's the best part? The app can also monitor the browser history of your kids' devices even when they browse in incognito or private mode.
- Safe Search: With this feature, you can block search results that have violent content by enabling Bing and Google's Safe Search option. In turn, this will reduce the chances of your kids acting aggressively.
Now you know what are the causes of youth violence and how you can prevent it. One of the effective ways to prevent this kind of risk is by using FamiSafe. The app aims to help parents keep their kids safe on the internet. Parents should aspire to see their kids grow up to successful individuals in the future and using this app is a reliable way to do that.