When dealing with your child’s tantrum it can be very difficult to keep yourself from having a meltdown of your own. Every tantrum is a result of the child not getting what they want. They get frustrated when you don’t acknowledge their wants and needs. The question that every parent wants answered, “how do you tame the tantrums?”
Try these tricks that experts and other moms swear by!
- Ignore it- During a tantrum their emotions take over, overriding the frontal cortex of the brain, the area that makes decisions and judgments.Reasoning won’t help because that part of their brain is turned off. Nothing you try to do will work, it will only make things worse. So just ignore it, when they calm down then you can talk.
- Give them space- Let them get their anger and feelings out. Make sure there is nothing that they can harm themselves with in case the tantrum spirals out of control. They will get everything out and be able to calm down and regain control.
- Create a diversion- Children have pretty short attention spans, which makes it easy to divert their attention from a meltdown. When they are on the verge or already having a tantrum try getting them engaged and interested in something else.
- Get to the bottom of their frustration- For toddlers under 2 years old most of the tantrums come from frustrations of not being able to get their point across. Let them show you what they are frustrated about. Teaching them signs for things such as milk or tired can also work wonders.
- Hugs- Hugs make kids feel secure and let them know that you care about them. Next time your child is freaking out, give them a big, firm hug without saying anything. It can really help them calm down.
- Incentives- As long as it is under your terms and ahead of time, give them an incentive to behave. If you are going to dinner, tell them if they behave they can watch a movie before bed. If a tantrum starts to occur remind them of that incentive.
- Get them out of there- Changing scenery helps change attitude. If they are having a tantrum at a restaurant, take them outside away from people and it will help them calm down faster.
Dealing with tantrums can be really frustrating and difficult. But by planning ahead, staying calm and applying these specific strategies, you can defuse them. And if the tantrum doesn’t quiet, try to ride it out.
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