How to Handle Children’s Tantrums: Effective Strategies for Parents

Dev_Abhisek
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Sometimes, it is observed that little babies begin to exhibit tantrums, which can manifest in various forms such as crying randomly, lying on the floor, or demanding seemingly random things. These behaviours are often challenging for parents to manage and can occur unpredictably. During these episodes, it is important to understand that the lower brain of the babies is operating, which means their actions are driven more by basic emotions and impulses rather than rational thought. This understanding can help caregivers respond more effectively and with greater empathy to the needs of their children during these difficult moments.

During these challenging moments, it is crucial for parents to avoid reacting impulsively with their lower brain. If parents allow themselves to become triggered by their children’s tantrums and respond with their own emotional impulses, it can lead to increased conflict and a more intense power struggle. Instead, parents should strive to engage their upper brain, the part responsible for reasoning, empathy, and problem-solving. By doing so, they can approach the situation with greater calmness and clarity, effectively de-escalating the situation and guiding their children towards more constructive behavior. This approach not only helps in soothing the child but also models healthy emotional regulation and problem-solving skills, fostering a more harmonious parent-child relationship.

Work of upstairs brain(Cerebral Context) and downstairs brain(Brain stem and limbic Region)

The cerebral cortex is a crucial part of the brain that plays a significant role in various higher-order functions. It primarily deals with our thoughts, providing the capacity to think critically and process complex information. This area of the brain is integral to creating meaning from our experiences and is deeply involved in logical reasoning and making associations between different pieces of information. The cerebral cortex also manages meta-cognition, or feelings about feelings, which allows us to reflect on our emotional states and understand them better.

In contrast to the cerebral cortex, the brain stem and the limbic region are responsible for managing more fundamental and instinctual aspects of human behaviour and physiology. The brain stem, often considered the most primitive part of the brain, oversees basic autonomic functions that are essential for survival. These include regulating heart rate, breathing, and other vital bodily processes that operate without conscious thought. The limbic region, closely linked with the brain stem, plays a crucial role in controlling simple emotions and emotional reactivity. This part of the brain is the centre of our emotional responses, governing how we react to different stimuli in our environment.

Here is how you counter your children’s tantrums

  • It is important to maintain composure and thoughtfully consider your response, rather than reacting hastily and impulsively.
  • Don’t give in to the demands of the tantrum because children learn that throwing a tantrum will get them what they want.
  • Try talking to your child calmly to engage his upper brain by asking questions about felling’s, thoughts, physical sensations etc.
  • If the child is an infant, staying quiet and gently hugging or holding them with love can significantly help in calming them down.
  • If nothing works the revert !! Do not engage with the child and talk when the situation has calmed down.
  • When the child is calm, try to understand what was the real need of the child that was not met and why was the child throwing tantrums and wanted more attention? or just rebelling? or were upset for some other reason.

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Dev_Abhisek

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