How do I stop tantrums that are getting worse?

Mellisa - posted on 01/23/2011 ( 17 moms have responded )

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my daughter is 1 year old and chucks these major tantrums and I don't know what to do, she screams so loud is hard to ignor her and after a while she will bang her head or something to make sure i come over and pick her up, its getting worse and I've run outta ideas to stop them. PLEASE HELP ME!!

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Alda - posted on 02/02/2011

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I have 2 1/2 year old twins and my advice (if you're sure nothing's actually wrong) is to completely ignore it. I actually step over mine if they're lying on the floor screaming and I don't even look at them. If you give in after 5 minutes then she knows next time she has to scream for 5 minutes to get your attention. If you give in after 10 minutes etc. Children are very clever, even at such a young age. If she knows tantrums don't work then she should stop trying (so often anyway lol). Good luck.

Jackie - posted on 01/26/2011

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She's hitting her head b/c she knows that is the trigger to get what she wants. You have to ignore her. My daughter HATES being ignored, so we just walk away completely until she starts being civilized again...happens pretty quick when you are completely ignoring her.

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Mellisa - posted on 02/07/2011

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Most time when she does throw these fits she not long eated or woken up so i know she isnt hungry or tired, but she also has a sevre case of seperation anxiety, somedays i can't even walk into my kitchen without her screaming to the point someone has called the cops on me! i do get down to her level and when she stands up i tell her calm urself, after a while she will and i give her a cuddel. but its getting worse and the peaditrition said its just behavioral.

Laurie - posted on 02/06/2011

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I agree with most of the replies that the best thing to do once she is in full melt down is to ignore her provided she is somewhere safe. My advice would be to see if you can figure out what specifically is causing the meltdowns (allergies, hunger, tiredness, boredom, frustration etc) and see if you can avoid most of them in the first place. Anticipating their needs a bit but not spoiling them by giving into their every whim, such as regular snack times and nap times so they don't get over tired or hungry, can work wonders. At 1 year of age I suspect what is triggering many of the fits is frustration. She either can't make herself understood, is very hungry or tired which makes it that much harder to have the patience to make herself understood, or react well when told she can't do something that she wants to do. With my children, I found that if you keep them well fed and well rested as much as possible, then the melt downs were much more infrequent. The overt cause of the melt down appears to be that you have told her that no you can't have/do such and such but I have found that if they are not hungry or tired for example, they tended to pout a little but not throw a full fit. They were much easier to redirect to something that they were allowed to have or do. Given that she's one, frustration is going to be a major problem until she can communicate well with you and learns to handle disappointment - which takes a while - my three year old still doesn't do well but his full blown fits generally happen only when he's really tired or hungry! I think you will find that the fits caused by sheer frustration will start to decrease once she is talking fairly fluently.

Debra-Ann - posted on 02/01/2011

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Mellisa, I strongly agree with all that BeeJay has had to say but at the same time IF you have tried everything, it does not hurt to ask your Pediatrition. It could be a very simple solution or maybe even an allergy. Reactions are different, my daughter has one to wheat & she used to throw fits. Found out she had the allergy & got stomach cramps. I wish you all the best, nothing harder to a parent than seeing their child upset or sick.

BeeJay - posted on 02/01/2011

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I tried everything and then one day when she was screaming and throwing her tantrum I just walked up to her and sat her down on the floor right where she was. After a few seconds, she calmed down and was up playng again. Now when she throws her tantrums I just tell her "Sit down" and she will sit down and cry (which usually only lasts for about a minute) and then she calms herself down and get up to do something else. I dont know why it works but it really does. I always give hugs and kisses when she is calmed down to let her know I am proud of her for calming herself down.

Debra-Ann - posted on 01/31/2011

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Our kids may be smart & test our and their limits constantly but your daughter is only 1. She cannot communicate in ways that we wish they could. Sad to say but children usually are like this when something is wrong & my advice would be rto seek medical/pediatrition help. All the best and wish you well.

Jackie - posted on 01/29/2011

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No you are correct, that can be added to the routine when she starts talking. You could ask her to give you a hug or something in place of sorry for now maybe??

Mellisa - posted on 01/29/2011

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yeah i been doing the ognoring thing until she stops, problem is she is only a year old so i cant really ask her to say sorry as she doesnt fully understand or can talk really.

Rebecca - posted on 01/28/2011

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I would say that as long as she is in a safe place at the time first of all tell her that "you will be ingnoring her until she stops this behaviour" in a very firm tone - then go do something else and when she stops ask her to apologise for being naughty give her a comforting hug then thats the end of it - hopefully!good luck with what ever you try though. :)

User - posted on 01/26/2011

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Leave the room and with my son I would have a treat in the kitchen and when he would ask for it I would say not until you can go the day without a fit. I would NEVER give him a treat until the tantrums were short lived. He learned really quick because sweets was his motivator. Figure out what your daughter's motivation is and USE it:)

Kristin - posted on 01/26/2011

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it's because you are picking up that she gets louder I know it's hard to do but you have to be strong and show no weakness just continue whatever you are doing and she will stop my kids both used to scream and throw themselves down hitting their heads into the floor I know it's stressful but if you can show her that you will not give in to her it will get better

Mellisa - posted on 01/26/2011

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Im trying the ignoring her and it worked yesterday even when she crawled up to me and stated pulling at my leg, she stopped about 10 min later then i went over and picked her up and gave her a cuddle. hopefully it keeps working and she kinda grows outta it. thanks guys for your wonderful advice

Karen - posted on 01/25/2011

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Sounds like she needs your attention. What happens when you pick her up? Maybe you could try picking her up and comforting her before the tantrum begins.

Delani - posted on 01/24/2011

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been there done that. My step-daughters temper tantrums continued all the way to school.. ignoring is the best way they want your attention and will do anything to get it... one time at school everyone was ignoring her when she was having one of her fits she walked over to the mirror and watched herself have her fit... yes she slammed her head a couple of times. I would pick her up not saying a word and move her to the carpet or her bed room... She survived. And is graduating this year and going on to college.. yours will survive. May want to check into that video though couldn't hurt..

Laura - posted on 01/24/2011

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One thing i learned was never give in. Toddlers are smarter than u think! U give in and pick her up she will continue to use that tac tic because she knows it works. Ignoring it is the best thing to do. I know it's hard either that or try distracting her with something like oh look here's your crayons why don't you draw a picture for me. This won't always work but it's worth a try.

Aicha - posted on 01/23/2011

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watch the DVD or read the book the happiest toddler on the block by Harvey Karp MD it is very helpful

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