Being a parent is a daunting task. It is no less than a job of a superhero. And the biggest challenge of parenting is handling the tantrums. Psychologist Ray Levy, who is also the co-author of “Try and Make Me! Simple Strategies That Turn Off The Tantrums and Create Cooperation” shares an important point about toddler tantrums - they are part of every childhood. Toddlers, especially are ones who are yet to develop a proven coping mechanism.
As a result, they simply give into their emotions and have frequent meltdowns in the process.
Ray Levy further adds that toddler throw fits not because they are simply upset but they use it as a source of communication. The entire outcome transforms into bouts of shrieks and shrills because kids of such an age are yet to develop the basic language skills.
They try to communicate their desires and wants, for example, when they are hungry, or need a toy or have had an emergency. Since, they cannot formulate their wants into a comprehensive language, which the adults can grab hold of instantly, they tend to lose it on their tantrum scale!
So, how to deal with toddler tantrums?
Now that you’ve got a more-or-less a background overview on why toddlers throw frequent fits, it will be easier for you to handle toddler tantrums. However, here are -
5 Effective Ways to Control Toddler Temper Tantrums.
Pay A Keen Attention To Your Kid’s Tantrum Frequency
As mentioned above, toddlers throw bouts of a tantrum in order to communicate their needs or requirements. As a parent, you need to understand your child’s needs before s/he goes galloping to Freaky-shrieky-town. First and foremost, try understanding the tantrum pattern based on events that lead to the shrieks and screams. Pay close attention to the events and situations that might cause your kid to let go of the loose ends. Once you’ve figured out the pattern, you can work through the process of avoiding tantrums.
Avoid A Scream Fest
Parents tend to lose it on their kids when they’re giving them a hard time. That should not be the process to handle toddler tantrums. In fact, it’s just the opposite that works wonders. If a toddler is having a screaming match, don’t match his / her steps. Instead, you stay calm and talk softly. Give him / her different options because choices allow children to feel like they have control. Once s/he has garnered a state of composure, try praising him/her for being calm again.
Train Toddler With Language Skills
As discussed earlier, toddler tantrums are a cause of language barrier and a child’s inability to put forth his / her message to the concerning adults. Thus, one of the best ways to handle toddler tantrums is by training kids the necessary language skills or basic ones that will help them to communicate better. Teach your little ones about different ways to use words to ask for something, express his / her emotions, etc. Use the earlier bouts of a tantrum as an example to teach your kid how to use words to communicate. Follow the process and witness a more expressive, reciprocative and communicative kid.
Avoid Punishing / Rewarding Toddler For Throwing Tantrums
Here’s another way on how to deal with toddler tantrums - do not punish/reward your kid when s/he throws a major fit. If your kid starts losing it just because you told her not to jump on the bed, don’t give into her demand or give her a time-out. Let her calm down first and allow her mind to process the entire event. And then you can proceed in teaching her the dos and don’ts.
Use The Power Of Touch
It’s not only kids but adults too express the similar patterns of emotions when they are upset or angry. When a person (irrespective of age) is upset or mad - s/he fails to see through any sort of reasoning. S/he is totally in the ignore mood. How to handle such a toddler tantrum? Use the power of touch. If you have a crying kid or a screaming baby, try taking him/her on your lap or hugging him/her. The positive and soothing touch will help douse the anger and control the situation.
Parenting is a skill learned through your own experiences and others. The key to handling toddler tantrums stems out of a parent’s patience level, emotions and conviction. Remember, a kid is a dough, capable of being molded into different forms. Thus, as parents, it becomes your ultimate responsibility to mold your child’s innocence and essence into a strong human being (mentally and physically). And it all starts with dealing with their tantrums, anger, screams, and cries!