Toddlers and preschool age children are very susceptible to temper tantrums. Temper tantrums can vary among children. Some may scream, some may hit, others may participate in unacceptable or destructive behavior. Regardless of how your child may throw their unique temper tantrum, there are ways to go about handling them calmly.
Find the Triggers
Pay attention to what causes your child’s temper tantrum. Does getting ready for school cause a breakdown? Bedtime? Dinnertime? Not getting what they want when they want it? These are some of the most common triggers for outbursts in preschool age children. Once you have identified what is causing your child to have their outburst, then you can begin to work on finding a solution.
It is possible that there may be some underlying issues that are causing your child to have their temper tantrums or unacceptable outbursts. If you feel that you are having a very difficult time controlling your child’s outbursts, a doctor may be able to offer testing to see if there is a different cause.
Finding the Solution
As mentioned above, there are events during daily routines that can cause your child to have an outburst. Before running off to the doctor, here are some basic steps to try at home that may help in handling outbursts in preschool age children.
- Getting ready for preschool – As a parent, this can be a hectic time. Especially if you have more than one child to get ready. Some of that chaotic energy can feed off onto your child resulting in their negative behavior. Small things such as laying out clothing, waking them up earlier, or moving their shower time to the night before can ease some of the morning activities.
- Dinnertime- Kids often throw tantrums during dinnertime. They may not be getting that bowl of ice cream they wanted for dinner, or the peas may be too mushy. Although they may be comedic reasons to us as adults, these small things can seem like a huge deal to your child. Next thing you know they are kicking and screaming on the kitchen floor. Try to involve your child. Let them help set up the table, clear the table, or help with safe tasks during the meal preparation. These are all exciting moments for a young child, to make them feel included.
- Bedtime- Kids often do not want to miss anything. Knowing that it is time to go to bed, makes them think of all the things that they are going to miss throughout the night. Creating a bedtime routine can help ease their mind before bed. Lay out their pajamas, so that after a calming bath they can get dressed and brush their teeth. Participate in a calming activity with them. A good bedtime story, a short movie, or singing a lullaby can all create a soothing atmosphere for your child.
Toddlers can be difficult. Their breakdowns, tantrums, and outbursts can be draining. It is important that you try to work with your child without giving in. For more information on outbursts in preschool age children. Check out a great article that we found.