Tantrum is common in children, a scenario of standing in the supermarket getting stuff and suddenly, your kids fall himself on floor rolling and fist ponding the ground after informing him there is no chocolate for him and offering apple instead. This can happen while home but it seems embarrassing in public when other shoppers are gazing trying to know what’s wrong.
It is also known as temper tantrum involving an emotional outburst that comes with unpleasant and disruptive behaviors. Usually exhibited by younger children who do not know how to express their need and desires. It is common in children ages 1-3, begins at 12 months to 18, and worsens at age 3 and exhibited by both boys and girls. It is usually a way to express if they are frustrated. Kids don’t usually have words to express themselves at the early stage of their life. Tantrum is like a tool of communication kids use to express feelings like hunger, tiredness, sickness or when their wish isn’t granted. Tantrum decreases when language skills start to develop.
The urge to be independent is a factor that could cause tantrum also. Children mostly want liberty in performing their day to day activities and if this isn’t allowed, tantrum develops. Sometimes, it may also be an attempt to gain attention from a parent or other caregiver, or an attempt to manipulate the situation in some way.
What are Signs of Tantrum?
- Violence such as hitting, kicking, throwing things, fall and rolling on the floor.
- Holding breathe
What to do if a child has tantrum
- Stay calm
Tantrum is normal in children age 1-4, when a child has tantrum; remember to stay calm and approach it quietly and peacefully even without breaking set rules. Do not shout or prank the kid because this can worsen it. Discuss with the kid after the tantrum.
Distraction therapy: this work by offering things that can distract the kids, playing fun, making funny faces and the likes.
Sometimes tantrum, if not harmful should be ignored. Pretend it is not happening. If tantrum is as a result of wants which is not granted; it could be tempting. But providing the particular needs is harmful because the kids will learn to believe in tantrum for getting wants desired.
Understand your kids; take time to understand your kid, the signs and languages. Give attention when needed and always acknowledge their good behaviours.
How to Prevent Tantrums in Kids
- Give child balanced and adequate meal and ensure enough sleep to prevent tantrum cause by hunger, discomfort or irritability.
- Give child opportunity to make choices and avoid no always. This will bring about feeling of belongingness and control over some things.
- Encourage children to use words; if the child is not talking yet or not clearly, teach to do so in simple way
Having tantrums is a normal part of growing up; however, they are not socially acceptable behavior. The tantrums often take place in public, which can be embarrassing and make them harder to deal with calmly. If the child actually hurts himself or others or has very frequent tantrums, it may be a sign of behavior problems, and the child should be assessed by a pediatrician.
Nonetheless, consult a doctor if the child hurts him/ herself, the parent, other people, or objects during a tantrum. Also if the child has more than five tantrums a day, or exceed age 4 with tantrums, do well to consult a doctor.
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