A temper tantrum is your child’s way of expressing their feelings or frustrations if they cannot show you what they want or if you are not allowing them have their own way.
The peek age for tantrums is about 2 years old, gradually trailing off by the age of 3.
During a tantrum your child may scream, kick, shout, bite and throw themselves on the floor.
For many children these tantrums may only occur a few times but for others it may be more frequent but will ease off as they get older.
A full temper tantrum is tough for you and frightening for your child.
Tips on how to manage a child’s tantrum
Stay calm and patient. This is sometimes easier said than done but it’s so important to stay calm and get the message across that you are the one in charge. If you do find yourself getting angry or upset try to get another adult to step in and take yourself out of the room.
Do not try to argue or reason with a child during a tantrum, while the tantrum lasts your child is beyond reason.
When you say ‘NO’, do it firmly and calmly and let your child know by the tone of your voice that you mean it.
Always praise your child for good behaviour so your child quickly knows the difference.
Don’t get embarrassed, most parents dread tantrums in public places. Stay calm and pay no attention until the tantrum is over.
As your child calms down the tantrum will usually turn into tears. Comfort your child (sometimes they may be scared by the intensity of their rage afterwards) while at the same time firmly explaining that such behaviour is not acceptable.
If your child is throwing lots of tantrums then it could help to try and work out what is triggering them and why, what did your child do during the tantrum, how did you react and how did it end?
Spotting early signs can help prevent them getting out of control or starting at all. Try to be aware of key triggers such as tiredness, hunger, too hot or cold and avoid situations like long supermarket checkouts.
If you sense one coming on distract your child, sing a funny song, help them find a toy anything to shift their attention.