Although many parents would prefer that it not be the case, temper tantrums are common among children. As kids learn to deal with emotions, both positive and negative, they often turn to tantrum behavior. While these emotional fits are relatively common, some problem children are more prone to tantrums than the general child. If your child frequently exhibits tantrum behavior, consider both the reasons behind his tantrums as well as what you could do to reduce the frequency with which he exhibits this undesirable behavior.
Children between the ages of 1 and 4 are particularly prone to tantrums, reports WebMD. This age window is the time when children learn to communicate and develop the skills necessary to deal with their emotions. If your child is outside of this age range and still exhibits tantrum behavior regularly, it could be a sign that his tantrums are more severe than the norm.
Kids commonly engage in tantrum behavior in a response to extreme emotions on either end of the spectrum, reports KidsHealth. While tantrums are most commonly associated with children who don’t get their way, children who are more excited than they can handle, or even more tired than they know how to manage, may exhibit tantrum behavior.
While there is likely nothing that you can to to rid your child completely of tantrum behavior, you can try some things to reduce the frequency of behavior of this type. KidsHealth suggests simple steps, like giving kids some control over minor decisions, ensuring that your child receives adequate attention during the day, or keeping items that your child may want but can’t have out of her eyesight to prevent temptation. If you are just beginning the process of tackling tantrums, try these simple interventions first to see if they effectively do the trick.
Immediately after your child goes through a tantrum, you will likely be a bit less than pleased. It is vital, however, that you not allow your displeasure to be too apparent. While it is wise to make it clear to your child that you wish he wouldn’t behave in that manner, you should not allow your child’s tantrum to induce you to give him the cold shoulder. Instead, after your child has calmed, remind him that you love him and tell him that you are going to work together to get these emotions under control. This simple sign of love can dramatically improve your relationship with your tantrum-prone child and show him that he is not alone in his desire to get the tantrums under control.
If your child experiences tantrums that are outside of the norm, it may be necessary to speak to his doctor. WebMD recommends you should likely speak to your child’s doctor if he is over the age of 4 and still regularly engages in tantrums, turns violent during tantrums or if your child’s tantrums are so severe that you cannot handle him during these fits. This doctor can help you determine whether your child’s behavior has a medical cause and, if so, assist you in overcoming the challenges your child’s tantrum behavior presents.