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WHY DO CHILDREN HAVE TEMPER TANTRUMS?

 

Temper tantrums are a normal part of growing up.  A temper tantrum is child's way of communicating frustration and confusion.  Toddlers have not developed successful coping skills.  It is hard to use words for emotions they cannot identify. If is difficult to express themselves when their vocabulary is limited.  Temper tantrums are an expression of a child's feelings.

Here are some common questions about temper tantrums:

• What is the normal age for temper tantrums?

While each child is unique, temper tantrums usually start around 12 months and become less intense and less frequent by age 4 or 5.

• Do temper tantrums result from bad parenting?

Usually not. Effective parenting can reduce the number of tantrums, but there is no way to prevent them completely.

• Should I be concerned if my child has more tantrums than other children?

There are many variables for tantrums.  There is no “correct” number of temper tantrums.  Each child’s temperament determines the number and intensity of a tantrum.

• Can my child hurt himself if he holds his breath until he turns blue?

The body forces breathing long before any damage is done.  If you are concerned, talk to your health care provider.

• My child only has tantrums when I am around.  Is this normal?

Your child may be using temper tantrums to show independence and that he trusts you.  He/She feels safer around you, therefore they feel they can test your rules and guidelines.  

 

For more information, try our online child care classes:

Basic Behavior Management

Coping With a Crying Baby

Feelings: Self-awareness, Control

Preschool Fitness 8 - Relaxation

Temperaments