Tantrum in Toddlers : How To Deal With It

Seeing a child crying and screaming is a normal scenery that we can find when we go to some public places like department store and restaurants.  What should the grown-ups do?  How should we react or better yet, how do we respond?  Do the parents need to act like them too? Or should they keep calm and give their children the space to express their feeling?


Tantrum usually happens in children especially among toddlers between 1 - 5 years old. A tantrum is the expression of a child's frustration with the challenges of the moment. Perhaps a child is having trouble figuring something out or completing a specific task. Maybe a child doesn't have the vocabulary and can't find the words to express his or her feelings. Those factors might trigger anger and a tantrum comes as the result. 


When a child has tantrums, there are many of ways to manage it :


1.Stay calm. When parents are facing a child having tantrums, they need to calm down themselves. Being angry at them won’t solve the problem. 


2. Ignore the Behavior. Ignoring the child’s behavior doesn’t mean you ignore your child. Parents need to ignore his/her negative behavior in order to make them realize that his/her action is what is disagreeable.  Once the child calms down, you can your child can talk and deal with his or her problem.


3. Set Private Spot. Children who are in danger of hurting themselves or others during a tantrum should be taken to a quiet, safe place to calm down. This also applies to tantrums in public places.


4.Time Out. If a safety issue is involved and a toddler repeats the forbidden behavior after being told to stop, use a time out or hug the child firmly for several minutes. Be consistent. 


5. Give In. Needless to say, giving a child what he or she wants to make him/her stop with the tantrum is basically rewarding the action.  They will thus repeat the action to get the reward.


Reward the behaviour or action that is correct which might be asking properly, waiting for one’s turn, talking with respect, and so on.


Remember, tantrums usually aren't cause for concern and generally stop on their own. As kids mature, they gain self-control. They learn to cooperate, communicate, and cope with frustration. Less frustration and more control will mean fewer tantrums and happier parents.




References :

Daniels E, et al. (2012). Assessment, Management and Prevention of Childhood Temper Tantrums. The Journal of Pediatrics.

O’Donnell. (2018). Temper Tantrum. Retrieved from https://kidshealth.org/en/parents/tantrums.html. 

Mayo Clinic Staff. (2018). Temper Tantrums in Toddlers: How to Keep the Peace. Retrieved from https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/infant-and-toddler-health/in-depth/tantrum/art-20047845. 



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