Screaming is a super-duper temper tantrum, unleashed by a youngster with exceptional vocal cords and lungs. Screaming tends to recur because it usually works. It either gets the parent to hand over an unconditional surrender or it causes the parent to scream back. Try this instead:
- First: Clarify the house rule for your child: "We don't scream in this house. Either talk in a calm voice or go to your room."
- Second: If the screaming continues, take your child to her bedroom for a brief time-out. Don't try to ignore this disruptive tantrum. Close the door to the "screaming room" to preserve your sanity.
- Third: Every 4 or 5 minutes, open the door and tell your child, "I hope you feel good enough to come out now." Give her lots of chances to rejoin the family. But if she comes out screaming, return her.
- Finally: Be sure none of the adults who care for your child yells or screams. Kids are marvelous copycats.
If you have other questions about your child's behavior, consult your healthcare provider.
Disclaimer: This information is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. It is provided for educational purposes only. You assume full responsibility for how you choose to use this information.
Author and Senior Reviewer: Barton D. Schmitt, M.D. FAAP
Last Review: 6/1/2008
Last Revised: 6/1/2000
Copyright 1994-2008 Barton Schmitt, M.D. Parent Advice Messages.