by Elizabeth Pantley
A baby's first tantrum can take you by surprise. Your baby can really shock you by shrieking, stamping, hitting, or making his whole body go stiff. But don't take it personally; baby tantrums aren't about anything you've done wrong, and they aren't really about temper, either -- your baby isn't old enough for that.
The ways you'll respond to your baby’s behavior when he is older are different than how you should respond now.
A baby tantrum is an abrupt and sudden loss of emotional control. Various factors bring tantrums on, and if you can identify the trigger, then you can help him calm down and perhaps even avoid the
tantrum in the first place. Here are the common reasons and ways to solve the problem (Please refer to table below).
Often, you can prevent a baby from losing control of his emotions if you prevent the situations that lead up to this. Here are some things to keep in mind:
|Reason for Tantrum||Possible Solution|
|Overtiredness||Settle baby down to sleep; Provide quiet activity|
|Hunger||Give baby a snack or something to drink|
|Frustration||Help baby achieve his goal or remove the frustration; Use distraction|
|Fear/anxiety||Hold and cuddle baby; Remove baby from difficult situation|
|Inability to communicate||Try to figure out what he wants; Calmly encourage him to show you|
|Resisting change||Allow a few minutes for baby to make adjustment|
|Over stimulation||Move baby to a quiet place|
Elizabeth Pantley is a mom of four, a parenting expert, attachment parenting supporter and the writer of several parenting books, including The No-Cry Sleep Solution: Gentle Ways to Help Your Baby Sleep Through the Night and The No-Cry Sleep Solution for Toddlers and Preschoolers. Elizabeth is a regular radio show guest and frequently quoted as a parenting expert in magazines such as Parents, Parenting, Working Mother, McCalls, Redbook and on over 50 parent-directed Web sites. She publishes a newsletter, Parent Tips, that's distributed in schools nationwide.
Copyright © Elizabeth Pantley. Permission to republish granted to Pregnancy.org, LLC.