What do I do when my child throws a temper tantrum?


Q: What do I do when my child throws a temper tantrum?
A: Temper tantrums are common and can begin as early as the age of one year. If you’re a parent or a caregiver, you’ve probably experienced your fair share of them. I found this great article that will give you some suggestions for helping your children learn self-control skills that can benefit them through their adolescent years. These skills will help replace temper tantrums in response to certain situations.

Teaching Your Child Self-Control
When kids melt down in the middle of a crowded store, at a holiday dinner with extended family, or at home, it can be extremely frustrating. But parents can help kids learn self-control and teach them how to respond to situations without just acting on impulse. Teaching self-control skills is one of the most important things parents can do for their kids because these are some of the most important skills for success later in life.

Helping Kids Learn Self-Control
By learning self-control, kids can make appropriate decisions and respond to stressful situations in ways that can yield positive outcomes. For example, if you say that you’re not serving ice cream until after dinner, your child may cry, plead, or even scream in the hopes that you will give in. But with self-control, your child can understand that a temper tantrum means you’ll take away the ice cream for good and that it’s wiser to wait patiently. Here are a few suggestions for helping kids learn to control their behavior:

 

Up to Age 2
Infants and toddlers get frustrated by the large gap between the things they want to do and what they’re able to do. They often respond with temper tantrums. Try to prevent outbursts by distracting your little one with toys or other activities. For kids reaching the 2-year-old mark, try a brief timeout in a designated area— like a kitchen chair or bottom stair—to show the consequences for outbursts and teach that it’s better to take some time alone instead of throwing a tantrum.

Ages 3 to 5
You can continue to use timeouts, but rather than enforcing a specific time limit, end timeouts once your …

Read the full article on The Village website…

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© 1995- 2014. The Nemours Foundation/KidsHealth®. Reprinted with permission.

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