WellbeingAll stagesBabyJuniorMental healthParentingParenting healthPre-schoolSpecial needsToddler

Temper tantrums are among the most common childhood behavioural problems especially between the ages of 1 and 3 years. These tantrums or extreme episodes of frustration or anger, can take the form of shouting, screaming, crying, falling to the floor, flailing arms and legs, hitting, kicking, throwing items, and engaging in breath holding spells.

Children who are tired, hungry, unwell, or frustrated may have limited coping skills and therefore engage in challenging behaviour. Additionally, children who are struggling to communicate their needs or feelings will engage in these negative type behaviours in order to try and seek support to be understood, get support from parents (attention), get what they need and avoid what they don’t want to do.

It is widely recognised that these tantrums are a normal part of development as the child learns to control his/her emotions, gain independence and increase their communication around their needs. They are rarely considered a serious emotional disturbance in children between the ages of 12 months and 4 years.

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