Dear Dr. Mike,
I am writing to you because i need some guidance as to where to go for help with my nephew. A quick background; My nephew is a 5 year old male. He was born two months premature. He has always had a very poor appetite. He has behavioral problems, i.e. inappropriate social behavior, asking repetitive questions, repetitive body movements (resemble tics) he doesn’t listen, doesn’t sit still. He is very difficult to be around.
The mother of this child has been ridiculed as a bad mother, not strict enough, too strict, you name it, she has tried it-nothing works with this child. He also hits the mother, despite time outs, spankings, lectures etc. My sister has taken him to his pediatrician for help because he is so hyper and he wasn’t sleeping properly, she was told he was fine and to just bear with it. He was never referred to a specialist or a psychologist. Could I ask you what your opinion is and please tell me what I can do to help my nephew? Any help you could give me would be greatly appreciated.
Thank You, Renee

Hi Renee,
Sounds like the little guy is really frustrating everybody. Sometimes, immaturity can stimulate some of these behaviors, but it also sounds a little more than just a behavior problem. You mentioned tics, hitting, repetitive behavior, etc.
Your nephew needs to be evaluated by a board certified pediatric neurologist. A pediatric neurologist specializes in the nervous system and brain of children. This type of specialist can tell you if your little guy has a nervous disorder (for example, ADHD – attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, learning disorder, OCD, etc.), and if he needs any medicine to help.
A pediatric psychologist may be needed AFTER your little guy has been seen by the pediatric neurologist.
I hope that helps. Mike