10 Ways to De-Escalate Tantrums

By DullesMoms, Jan 2023

When it comes to outbursts, it’s time to channel your inner “tantrum-tamer.” These ten strategies will help you keep your cool and soothe your little one.

Stay Calm & Patient
When faced with a tantrum, it’s essential to remain calm and composed. Your child is looking to you for guidance and reassurance, and a calm demeanor can help them feel more secure.

Validate Your Child’s Feelings
Let your child know that you understand their frustration or anger. Saying something like, “I see that you’re upset,” can make them feel heard and less likely to escalate their emotions.

Use Simple Language
Keep your communication simple and age-appropriate. Use short sentences to explain the situation or express your expectations. Complex explanations can overwhelm a young child.

Offer Choices
Give your child a sense of control by offering them choices. For example, you can say, “Would you like to wear the red shirt or the blue shirt today?” This can help prevent power struggles.

Provide a Distraction
Redirect your child’s attention by offering a different activity or toy. Sometimes, a change of focus is all it takes to divert their attention away from the tantrum.

Maintain Consistent Routines
Children thrive on routines, so try to stick to a consistent schedule. Predictability can reduce the likelihood of tantrums triggered by tiredness or hunger.

Use Time-Outs Sparingly
While time-outs can be effective for discipline, use them sparingly and as a last resort. Instead, focus on teaching your child coping strategies and problem-solving skills.

Offer Comfort & Affection
Sometimes, a comforting hug or a few soothing words can work wonders in calming a child down. Reassure them that you love them no matter what.

Practice Deep Breathing
Teach your child deep breathing exercises. Encourage them to take slow, deep breaths to help regulate their emotions when they start to feel overwhelmed.

Model Emotion Regulation
Children learn by example. Show them how to manage emotions by modeling healthy emotional expression yourself. They’ll pick up valuable skills from watching you.

Remember that every child is unique, and what works for one may not work for another. Be patient, flexible, and open to trying different approaches to find the strategies that best de-escalate tantrums in your child.

Please note, this content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.