Children’s tantrums and meltdowns: Expert reveals what your child goes through mentally

Children feel vulnerable in the moment of tantrums and in their way, are trying to learn the management of feelings.

Updated on Jun 06, 2022 04:50 PM IST  |  282.1K
Expert reveals what your child goes through mentally
Expert reveals what your child goes through mentally
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When a child is going through a tantrum or meltdown, it is usually because their brain is not fully developed yet to emotionally regulate the feelings they experience, says Dr. Kriti Israni – Child Development and Parenting Expert. It’s a sign of frustration that they experience during distress. Additionally, they are still in the process of learning to communicate feelings through social, emotional, and language development. So being upset, crying, and behaving uncontrollably is truly a cry for help. In moments as such, children want to be understood and seek support in helping them navigate through feelings, she explains.

Children feel vulnerable in the moment of tantrums and in their way, are trying to learn the management of feelings. They also learn through tantrums or meltdowns how their behavior influences others and how others react to them.

children temper tantrums

Below mentioned are the three rules that you need to always remember and practice when dealing with your children’s emotions.

  1. Deal with empathy

If we react negatively or try to deal with tantrums or meltdowns with logic, then the resulted outcome can be a big disaster. All we need is to demonstrate patience and love. With empathy, we can enforce and build a positive connection at the moment; once they let us in, we can help them to navigate feelings and achieve a state of calmness. Only once they get calm and are in a regulated state, we can enforce logic. 

  1. Refrain from physical or verbal abuse

Threatening, losing our patience, yelling, hitting, locking them up for their tantrum, all these actions further spiral them out. Kids learn that it is not safe to express feelings or ask for help in time of need and they learn we will be punished for expressing our feelings. They get further disconnected from their parents and start developing self-blame rather than self-realization. In turn, we also add to our frustration, guilt, and unhappinessat the moment.

  1. Seek help

If you are one of the parents who feel exhausted handling yourself and your child with frequent outbursts of tantrums and meltdowns, seek help. It’s best to approach a coach or an expert to work with you and your child in managing the situations and feelings better. Many a time, we neglect the importance of why kids have tantrums or meltdowns and the importance of the impact it makes on a child’s development. We only realize how important the impact is after our kids have grown into adults and behave in a certain and peculiar way. 

children temper tantrum

Ultimately, how parents react totantrums or meltdowns has a major impact on how kids develop their emotional regulation ability, what kind of relationship they establish with their parents, and how they deal with emotions at a later stage in their lives. It is not only an opportunity for kids to learn but also an opportunity for parents to evolve and be a better version of themselves.

Also Read: Monday Mind Talks: Ways to support your teen's mental health

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