Temper Tantrum

Temper tantrum child

Last Updated December 20th, 2021

Temper tantrums can be defined as the emotional outbursts of a toddler or an adult. This is generally seen when any of the needs are not met appropriately. These are generally noticed in young children when they do not exactly know how to express their requirements and end up getting frustrated
Preventing them would be the best way forward. If the child is stressed, it can cause an outburst of temper tantrums. Staying calm can help reduce outburst. Distracting the child with another topic is helpful. Avoid fulfilling the demands as it just encourages the child to become more stubborn. A time-out is also considered a better choice.
Temper tantrums can last anywhere from few minutes to hours depending on how to handle the situation. Even a healthy child can have a temper tantrum that can last for up to an hour. Most probably the next temper tantrum would generally last only few seconds to a minute. People who have regular temper tantrums can have them for around 20 to 30 minutes long.
Temper tantrums may be quite common among children, but there are few red flags that needs to be addressed and these include aggression towards the caregiver who is taking care of the child, causing self injuries, frequent temper tantrums, tantrums that last for a very long time, and inability to calm down after a temper tantrum. All these behaviours need to be addressed with your child’s doctor in detail.

Overview of temper tantrum

A number of behavioral changes occur in the developing years of a child. These changes mark the milestones in the toddler’s mental growth and development. The most common behavioral change that takes place in this period is “Temper Tantrum”. It can begin as early as a few months to 2-3 years of age. Statistics show that nearly 23-83% of children between the age of 2-4 years exhibit episodes of a temper tantrum.  Development of behavioral pattern and etiquettes is mandatory on the part of the parents in order to regulate these symptoms.

What is temper tantrum?

Temper tantrum yellingTemper tantrum comprises of a series of behavioral problems that occur in and infants mainly in their growing stage. The common manifestations are shouting, crying, screaming, rolling on the floor, kicking and holding breath for a long time. These outbursts are the “exhibitionistic” manifestations of these children when they desperately seek attention. The tantrum episodes are more common when the children are prevented from doing, saying or touching something. It may also occur when they do not get something (a toy or some other attractive object) even after demanding repeatedly. These kinds of tantrums result from the presence of excessive energy but the inadequacy of speech to communicate the demands.

The peak age of temper tantrums is usually 2-4 years. Typically the children exhibit temper tantrums with a particular person (mostly the parents) and at a particular place. But some children may exhibit these tantrums in public places in order to seek more attention, thinking that it might meet their demands.

What causes temper tantrum?

Temper tantrum arises from several factors. The most common factors are as follows-

  • Mental irritation and agitation when the people around cannot understand or are not listening to what the child is trying to convey.
  • Confusion in the child’s mind when he/she cannot understand what the others (especially the parents) are trying to say.
  • Lack of words to fully express the feelings and demands (occurs in infants less than1-year-old)
  • Irritation aroused due to the inability to solve different problems on their own
  • Anger and stubbornness when people discourage the child from different activities (such as touching objects, putting a finger or placing objects inside the mouth)
  • The child may have medical illnesses (like stomach ache, ear ache) but cannot convey what is wrong
  • The child may be hungry and may not be able to express it properly
  • Tiredness and sleeplessness
  • Anxiety, discomfort or unexplained fear
  • Troubled environment at home
  • Jealousy and insecurity when a child finds his/her sibling or another child of the smae age is getting more attention
  • Inability to perform activities they see people doing such as running, climbing stairs, making electronic toys work etc
  • Tendency to imitate a family member or other people (say babysitter) who has exhibits temper tantrums
  • Inherited behavioural traits
  • Overstimulation due to activity and excitement
  • Hearing the word “no” repeatedly from the parents
  • Disruption of normal routines such as timely feeding, bathing and sleeping
  • Continuously forcing a child to do something he/she is not willing to
  • The child may feel neglected and seek unnecessary attention
  • Certain developmental phenomenon like “teething”
  • Criticising or accusing a child repeatedly in front of outsiders
  • Teasing or irritation (at times abuse) caused by some unknown person

What are the common symptoms of temper tantrum?

Temper tantrum girlTemper tantrum is a very common occurrence in pre-school children. The parents must have knowledge of the following symptoms-

  • Shouting, crying and screaming
  • Banging head against a wall or some other hard surface
  • Kicking and biting unexplainably
  • Rolling on the floor
  • Stamping foot on the ground
  • Pounding fists on a surface
  • Running around in a certain space
  • Holding breath for a long time
  • Throwing away objects that are present nearby
  • Breaking things and stamping on them
  • Hitting a person or a pet animal
  • Pulling hair and making unusual faces
  • Resistive behaviour when someone tries to show affection or console
  • Stubborn attitude
  • Injurious behaviours (to others or to oneself)
  • Vomiting (occurs after long hours of tantrum)

Struggling with growing episodes of temper tantrums? Have zero ideas on how to control a raging toddler? Why not give these a try…

How do temper tantrums develop?

Temper tantrums grow progressively according to the stage of development of the child. The following stages are usually observed-

Stage I: This stage marks the onset of the first temper tantrum episodes. This stage usually starts between 12-15 months. During this time, the child starts growing feelings and emotions. It knows how to express demands. It points fingers at objects it needs and starts crying and shouting when it is not allowed to access those items. The child shows stubbornness and an extremely resistive attitude when someone tries to divert his/her attention to something else. Many children exhibit patterns like rolling on the floor, clinging to a person, being rigid and stiff, and yelling continuously.

Stage II: It is the peak period of tantrums. It occurs between the ages of 18-36 years. The parents and the school teachers observe a noticeable increase in the intensity of tantrums. The children tend to throw themselves on the ground, break objects, bite other people (mainly their friends or siblings) and frighten the elders by holding their breath. Many of these children exhibit self-abrasive behaviour as well.

Stage III: This stage usually starts after the age of 3. In this stage, the children develop words and expressions properly. The tantrums usually dissipate since the child can clearly express his/her needs. But in many cases, children tend to retain the past habits, if they strongly believe that throwing tantrums is the only means of getting what they want.

Management

Temper tantrum childThe following techniques and strategies will help you manage and prevent temper tantrum episodes:

  • Be careful of the situations and triggers that can very likely cause a temper tantrum episode. Don’t let the child live through erratic schedules or abrupt changes in daily routine.
  • Keep your child occupied with toys and similar items while you attend to other chores.
  • Make sure that the child is getting the required amount of sleep and rest every day.
  • While it is easy to give in to the temper tantrum of the child, it is neither effective nor advisable in the longer run. In order to calm your child, you must yourself first learn how to act and behave calmly during the tantrum episodes.
  • Refrain from resorting to spanking or physically hitting the child when the child is throwing a tantrum.
  • In many cases, tantrums are thrown as a way to gain attention from parent/s. Be clear and strict with the child explaining him/her why such a behavior is undesirable.
  • Try to keep your child well-fed and well-rested. Hunger and fatigue are the two biggest triggers of temper tantrums.

Facts

  • Temper tantrums are most commonly found among kids within the age group of 2-4 years.
  • These are considered as a normal part of growing up. These are caused by need for independence coupled with cognitive immaturity, both of which are normal for kids this age.

Facts

  • The prevalence of temper tantrums varies from 23% to 85% among toddlers.
  • At this age, the receptive language is more than a 1000 words but the expressive language is hardly 150-200 words.

Facts

  • Temper tantrums follow a set pattern. This starts with yelling and screaming, transitions into throwing of objects, and is followed by crying and whining.

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Temper tantrums can be defined as the emotional outbursts of a toddler or an adult. This is generally seen when any of the needs are not met appropriately. These are generally noticed in young children when they do not exactly know how to express their requirements and end up getting frustrated
Preventing them would be the best way forward. If the child is stressed, it can cause an outburst of temper tantrums. Staying calm can help reduce outburst. Distracting the child with another topic is helpful. Avoid fulfilling the demands as it just encourages the child to become more stubborn. A time-out is also considered a better choice.
Temper tantrums can last anywhere from few minutes to hours depending on how to handle the situation. Even a healthy child can have a temper tantrum that can last for up to an hour. Most probably the next temper tantrum would generally last only few seconds to a minute. People who have regular temper tantrums can have them for around 20 to 30 minutes long.
Temper tantrums may be quite common among children, but there are few red flags that needs to be addressed and these include aggression towards the caregiver who is taking care of the child, causing self injuries, frequent temper tantrums, tantrums that last for a very long time, and inability to calm down after a temper tantrum. All these behaviours need to be addressed with your child’s doctor in detail.

 

Dos and Don'ts

Dos
  • Maintain your calm during the temper tantrum episodes and try to ignore them as much as possible.
  • Instead of arguing or reasoning with the child amidst a tantrum episode, give short and strict commands such as “go to your room”.
  • Try to distract the child. It is effective as children have a minimum attention span and it will help you controlling the tantrum episode.
Don'ts
  • Give in readily to the demands of the child. If the child sees you forming this behavior, he/she might end up throwing temper tantrums every now and then.
  • Push your child’s physical and mental limits. Don’t take them for long journeys or give them complicated toys to play with. This will make them more restless.
  • Resort to bribing or overreacting when your child throws a temper tantrum.

 

 

 

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Quinine: How gin and tonic came to be known as a potent health elixir The discovery of quinine-containing tree bark is sometimes considered the most serendipitous medical discovery of the 17th century.
Surgery or home-remedy; what is the right way to treat a burn The treatment of a burn injury depends on its severity. You can save a life by offering the…
Balneotherapy jacuzzi
5 things you didn’t know about balneotherapy and how you can do it at home Sauna baths have been popular since a long time. But how much more beneficial can balneotherapy be as…
Bone marrow aspiration Bone marrow aspiration is a process where a sample of the bone marrow is withdrawn from the bone…
Rubella IgM test
Rubella IgM Test The Rubella IgM test is a blood test that is performed to diagnose the presence of the rubella…
HSV-1_IGG
Herpes Simplex Virus I (HSV)-IgG Test Herpes simplex virus I(HSV)-IgG is an Immunoglobulin protein that acts as an antibody & stays in the blood…
Isagenix diet weight loss
How are BMI and BMR different and what do these numbers mean? BMI and BMR are two important metrics that provide a clear picture of your body's metabolism and also…
Carb Cycling: Weighing the pros vs the cons of this diet routine Completely discarding carbs from your life will do you more harm than good. Read more about carb cycling,…
sodium chloride
Halotherapy: How inhaling salt can work wonders for your body Halotherapy is quickly gaining popularity amongst those with respiratory diseases. It has shown promise in its treatment.
GGt test
GGT – Gamma-Glutamyl Transferase Test GGT or gammaglutamyl transferase test is a liver function test that is used to detect the extent of…
colposcopy
Colposcopy Colposcopy is a simple, quick and non- invasive diagnostic tool to look closely inside the vulva, vagina, and…
thyroid_scan
Thyroid Scan Thyroid scan is a diagnostic procedure that aims to view the thyroid gland and detect any growths or…
valproic acid test
Valproic Acid Test Valproic acid test is performed to generally check for psychiatric and even neurological conditions such as bipolar disease…
vdrl test syphilis
VDRL Test The VDRL test is a blood test that is used to diagnose sexually transmitted or venereal diseases, primarily…
ureteroscopy
Ureteroscopy Ureteroscopy is the diagnostic procedure which is used for the detection of the kidney stones in addition to…
eating disorder anorexia
Eating Disorders: Lifestyle choice or a psychological condition? Is eating disorder just a harmless bad habit? Or does it represent grim psychological disorders? Do you want…
liver detox facts
7 liver detox facts and why ignoring these could kill you! Are you taking care of this organ that handles over 500 different vital functions in your body? Your…
High Fiber Diet – Fire up your fiber intake for these health benefits! Regular bowels, healthy detox, higher immunity, and guaranteed weight loss - a high fiber diet can bring all…
Did you know drinking alkaline water could be the healthier choice for you? Ever wondered how safe is your drinking water in terms of pH? Recent studies have revealed that Alkaline…
Piaget stages: Do they accurately describe the way the human brain develops?  A common assumption was that children are less competent thinkers as compared to adults, but this was refuted…
phenytoin test
Phenytoin test Phenytoin is a drug that is administered mainly to epilepsy patients. The phenytoin blood test measures the level…
rosacea-treatment--before-_-after
The best and safest ways to treat rosacea Rosacea is a skin disease that is characterized by reddish hives and rashes on the face. Read more…
Optavia diet
The features of an Optavia diet The Optavia diet endorses pre-packaged meals and snacks called "fuelings" that are tasty, low in calorie, and incorporates…
dance health benefits
5 unbelievable effects of dance on your overall health! You enjoy dancing, but did you know what else it does to your body? Dancing is not only…
What to eat, what not to eat in the South Beach Diet? The South Beach Diet is one among the most popular weight loss programs that have been the talk…
Ear pain model
Easy and safe tips for ear wax removal you can do at home Cerumen impaction generally occurs when an external object like cotton swabs are used to remove the ear wax.…
CBC blood test
CBC (Hemogram 6-part diff) blood test CBC (Hemogram 6-part diff) blood test refers to the test that measures the number of RBCs, WBCs, etc…
BoneMarrow-Biopsy
Bone Marrow Biopsy Bone marrow biopsy is a diagnostic procedure where a small amount of bone marrow is extracted from hip…
beta hcg test
Beta hCG Test A Beta hCG test measures the level of human gonadotropin hormones present in the blood that is primarliy…
blood ketone test
Blood Ketone (D3HB) Test The Blood Ketone Test measures and monitors the levels of ketone in the blood which is usually performed…
piles,fistula,fissures
Difference between piles, fissures, and fistula Click to know the difference between piles, fistula and fissure and the best ways to get effective treatment…
L-theanine attention
L-Theanine: Better sleep, higher focus, and many other benefits Did you know that L-theanine found in green tea can make you sleep better and be focused at…
Is it possible to achieve full body detox with Master Cleanse? Master cleanse is a diet consisting of a lemonade based beverage, a salt water drink and a herbal…
Vitamin b12
Vitamin B12 Test Vitamin b12 is an essential nutrient required for healthy functioning of the nervous system and also development of…
LFT-test
Liver Function Test – LFT LFT or Liver Function Test is a blood test used to determine the levels of hepatic enzymes which…
C-Reactive Protein Test A CRP or c-reactive protein blood test is an important diagnostic tool used to determine the risk of…
Strep throat pain
Anti-Streptolysin-O Test The ASO or Anti-Streptolysin-O is a blood test designed to check for the presence of streptococcus bacterial infection…
about mediterranean diet
Why you should be adopting a Mediterranean style of diet today Ever wondered why the Mediterranean diet is so healthy? One simple solution to lowering risk of several deadliest…
Jicama: A fiber-rich tuber for your weight loss goals Pronouced as HEE-kah-ma, Jicama is the "new kid on the block" that has taken the world by the…
sugar toxic health
Sugar: 7 new shocking truths revealed about the sweet poison Can drinking soda bring you closer to death? Is sugar slowly poisoning you and your family? You would…
nutritional yeast bread
Nutritional Yeast : How can a fungi culture be good for your body? Nutritional yeast: How a simple culture of fungi can transform your skin, digestion, immunity , and much more.…
Cayenne: The remarkable benefits of these red hot chili peppers These may make you rush for a glass of water, but cayenne pepper is actually a healthy additive…
Epley maneuver: Why is this the best protection from the symptoms of vertigo? Epley maneuver is an exercise that can treat the symptoms of benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV).  It was…
Mood swings
The real reasons for your mood swings and how to overcome them Are you prone to heated moods frequently? Do you also feel bouts of depressive feeling creeping up on…
Oxalates: How healthy greens can sometimes be bad news for your kidneys Oxalates are compounds present in a majority of healthy foods. However, at times an overconsumption of these could…