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Positive parenting helps control child’s tantrums PDF Print E-mail
(1 Vote)
Written by Staff reporter   
DUBAI, 17 September 2011— If you are a parent, then you would know what it is to stand in an aisle at the grocery store, helpless and embarrassed, and watch your two-year-old yell at you for a toy or a bar of candy.

Yes, it may be easier to give in to the child’s tantrum and buy him that little object of desire. But is that a solution to solve the problem altogether?

These temper tantrums are common, and kids do grow out of it. But, that doesn’t mean that a parent cannot do anything about it. In fact, Dr Jamuna Raguraman of Aster Medical Center says parents can very much control the tantrums and tune the child behaviour.

The answer lies in positive reinforcement of the right behaviour. The process of training the child into behaving begins right from infancy where every act of the child is responded to with positive or negative feedback. “Even in infancy, babies understand the reaction parents have to what they do and the tone that is used to express their opinion. With a soft tone and a gentle approval of a child’s good behavior, parents can train the child to behave well over time. Repetition of your response would reinforce good behaviour. Children can be easily molded to behave well through positive parenting,” says Dr Jamuna.

“It isn’t too late to begin this form of approach to tantrums. The first step lies in recognising where the fault lies. Getting to the root of the problem and dealing with it from there,” the doctor suggests.

One should channelise the energy of the child in more constructive ways. “As parents, we are protective of our children, and therefore, try to restrain them within the safe and comfortable confines of our homes. It is a good idea to expose them to open and real environments such as parks, other children and animals. Interaction with life in an open environment helps inculcate a positive attitude in a child, and the open space helps them expend their energy in play.”

“The most popular tantrums are seen over mealtimes, in malls or while leaving a party or park. In my experience, I have seen that preparing the child well in advance is a good way to avoid a tantrum. Before heading to the mall, tell the child that he can buy toy or chocolate, but ‘mummy or daddy’ will decide if he can have it. Reinforcement of this rule before every mall visit would eventually make the child understand,” Dr Jamuna recommends.

The doctor further adds, “Something simple and interesting we don’t always know about is ‘object permanence’. This is the ability of a child to understand that what he cannot see does exist. This realisation forms at around nine months of age in an infant, which is an interesting time to play positive games of ‘hide and seek’ or ‘peek-a-boo’.

The one thing a parent must know and understand is that they can do something about their child’s temper tantrums, and most importantly, that this is a phase which, thankfully, will pass.”


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