Temper Tantrums: Toddler And Preschooler
No matter how calm and gentle a parent you are, your child will probably throw some temper tantrums. Your response should take into account what type of tantrum your child is having.
- First: Some tantrums are frustration related--as when your child can't put something together. Be supportive and ask your child if there's anything you can do to help.
- Second: Some tantrums represent demands--as for attention when you are busy. When your child cries or whines to get his way, ignore it. This means no comments and no eye contact. Consider moving to a different room.
- Third: Some tantrums represent refusal, often around bedtime or before going to day care. Let this tantrum run its course for 2 or 3 minutes, then take your child to the intended destination even if it means carrying him.
- Fourth: Some tantrums are too disruptive to be ignored. Examples are clinging or screaming that can drive you crazy. For these, take your child to his room for a brief time-out.
- Finally: Praise your child when he controls his temper and puts these angry feelings into words. Hang in there, parent, this too shall pass.
If you have questions about temper tantrums, 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