Toddler boy crying in candy aisle of grocery store
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A tantrum is an outburst that can include crying, screaming, kicking, breath-holding and other behaviors. In young toddlers, tantrums usually occur due to some sort of frustration. Older toddlers, however, are able to use tantrums in attempts to get parents or other caregivers to do what they want.

Tantrums that are a result of frustration (no matter the age) should be dealt with using empathy and understanding.

For example, if your toddler is having a tantrum and doesn't want to put her shoes on, it may be because putting her shoes on is difficult or perhaps the shoes don't fit and hurt her feet. You can assist your toddler in putting her shoes on or get her an easier pair to put on by herself and make sure that her shoes fit well to avoid this type of tantrum.

Tantrums that your toddler uses to get her way should be handled with discipline. For example, your toddler might refuse to put her shoes on and may throw a tantrum because she wants to keep playing instead of going to run errands. This type of tantrum could be dealt with by using a time out and having clear expectations.

Also Known As: temper tantrum, hissy fit, fit, outburst, meltdown,

Common Misspellings: tan trum, tantrim, tantram

Examples: My toddler is very difficult to calm down when she's having a tantrum.

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