Spastic behavior.... normal?

Bre - posted on 08/25/2010 ( 8 moms have responded )

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My almost-3 year old, especially about an hour before bedtime or if he's skipped his nap, (a subject for another day) gets really spastic. He's uncontrollably loud, uncooperative, and twists and jumps and throws things in very quick, jerky movements. And although throughout the day he may do some of these things regularly (like forget his inside voice while his sister is napping) he's different when he's all spaz-y... maybe only differences a mom would notice. His eyes may be glassy or big and round or dilated. He doesn't appear to be able to regulate his actions or voice level. He twists and jerks out of my arms and squeaks and hoots in protest. The usual ways of getting him to behave don't work, not even bribery at that point (haha... don't pretend you dont do it, moms!)
I just want to know if this is normal tired toddler behavior, or even regular hyper toddler behavior, rather than some kind of disorder or epilepsy. It can get pretty weird.
Thanx in advance for all replies... even if it's just "youre not alone, my kid is a lunatic too!" :)

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Jackie - posted on 09/10/2010

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Normal! My sister has 2 boys that do the same thing! My girls both just get snuggly so I don't know if it is a boy thing or not but it is TOTALLY normal.

Lyndsay - posted on 08/25/2010

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I think the big red flag, for me, would be the eyes. If his pupils are irregular or he has a glossy look, it's probably not normal behaviour. I would speak to a doctor.

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Nicole - posted on 04/04/2011

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My daughter gets the same way. I wouldn't call them jerky movements, but she gets way out of control when she is overtired. In fact she just did it last night at my parents' when we were trying to leave. I usually don't bother putting her down for a nap and just try to put her to bed early, but on the nights I take the car and have to pick her daddy up late from work, she sometimes gets like this.

Brianne - posted on 03/09/2011

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My daughter is the same way, its totally normal for a kid to get hyper if they are over-tired. She has tantrums, is over-sensitive and sometimes just spazzes out for no reason at all! Her eyes totally get that glazed over look at times too. When she misses a nap she goes to bed early, the more tired she gets the crazier she gets!

Katie - posted on 11/12/2010

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This is tricky! My son is NOT a good sleeper, never has been.. and I'm actually at a crossroads in my decision of continuing to allow naptime or to completely cut it out of our regime. With naps, he typically will not go to bed until after 10.. without naps, he's in bed by 8. HOWEVER.. either time, with a nap, or without.. he is overstimulated by bedtime (almost every night).. and starts acting out. I'm not sure his actions are "jerky", but he does get glossy eyes (not dilated though). He runs around like he's in track and gets upset a lot easier.. if he gets in trouble for something he immediately bursts into tears.. whereas earlier in the day he's a very tough kid. He also tends to to bully his little sister more.. this is before bedtime AND naptime.. hence why I am debating if I want to skip naptime and deal with this for 5 hours in order to get him to bed earlier. He could be sleep-walking and refuse to go to sleep.. he just does not like missing anything. So I understand, it seems very unusual, but I have talked to his pediatrician about this, and about how he doesn't seem to need much sleep.. and my pediatrician has told me that's normal. I wouldn't worry - if you feel something is out of the norm.. go to the doctor! You and your husband are the only one's that see him this way so go with your instincts.. and know you're not alone!

Cyndel - posted on 09/18/2010

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When my son gets this way, not very often, I put him to bed 15-30 minutes early for a while, it usually helps. He only gets spazy if his nap or bed time is off schedual to much the extra sleep helps.
Also do you work? If you do he may just need mommy time and feels he isn't getting enough, or perhaps daddy time. Maybe daddy should help more with bed time. I find bed time goes much better if daddy is there.

Jennifer - posted on 09/12/2010

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I have never experienced that myself as a mom of 4 but my oldest son does have night terror syndrome which this sounds similar too but his was always within an hour after fall asleep. I would consider talking to your pediatrician because it could be something more than just normal toddler behavior. Good Luck.

Renee - posted on 09/07/2010

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My 3 yr old gets super hyper when it is time for bed. She will start head banging, dancing, running, etc. I don't know if I would describe it as jerky or that she has glassy eyes. I think that she is over tired and just doesn't want to go to bed. If you think that it is something other than trying to fight sleep or just being over tired maybe you could call the nurses line at your son's doctors office and talk with them to see if it sounds unusual. Good luck.

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