8 Toddler Bad Habits And Ways To Break Them
In case you are a parent of a tiny toddler, you exactly know how frustrating it feels when your otherwise sweet baby starts shoving, biting or hitting kids in the playground. Lot of parents wonder if they are failing as parents and end up berating themselves. Relax parents! Its very common, almost all toddlers go through this phase where they pick up a number of bad habits. However, it is important to keep a check, before these habits become your child’s nature.
Almost all children go through a biting phase as soon as they begin teething. What begins as a way to vent teething frustration becomes a way to express displeasures of all kinds if it is not discouraged right from the start. A good way to prevent from biting becoming a habit it to tell the child that biting is bad and to ignore the child completely after episodes of biting.
As they learn about social interactions, young children find out that hitting is one of the ways to express their displeasure and they often resort to physical violence towards adults and other kids. To discourage kids from hitting others, remove the child from the situation immediately and tell him that he would not be taken to the park or to playdates anymore if he continues to hit others.
3. Picking nose
Picking nose is just one of the ways in which children explore their bodies. However, to discourage nose picking, parents can teach kids to use a tissue to clean out their noses. This would satisfy the inquisitive nature of the child while keeping his hands clean.
4. Throwing tantrums
Toddlers are pretty smart and they pick up stress and nervousness in adults if they throw tantrums. If they have learnt that throwing a tantrum will get them to have their way, they will repeat it as often they need to. To discourage tantrum throwing, simply don’t give in to it whether you are in public or in private. However it may break your heart to deny your little angel, be firm.
Young children are often unclear on what constitutes as moral behavior and often resort to lying to escape consequences when they do something bad even if it was an accident. To prevent lying from becoming a permanent habit, parents need to modify their reactions to condemn actions that caused a mishap rather than the child. This does not mean that the child should not be made to understand that lying is indeed bad. It should be made clear that lying only adds to the wrong doing and that there is no need for them because you as parents will always hear out the reason for the actions. Let the child trust you enough so that he does not feel the need to lie.
Almost every second child goes through a bullying phase when he begins developing social skills. The habit can develop into a child’s second nature if it isn’t checked in time. To break habits of bullying, offer the child alternative ways to vent his frustration. Find out what’s causing him to bully other kids and deal with that problem proactively to eliminate bullying.
As soon as a child picks up language skills, he is also most likely to pick up bad words. Check if abusive words are being used at home and whether the child is being exposed to swear words through the television or other forms of media. If the child has picked up such words at the school or the playground, a polite word with other parents and teachers would be sufficient to help eliminate such words from his vocabulary.
8. Thumb Sucking
While not uncommon in kids it may continue well into a long term habit. The consequences are delays in speech and dental problems in the future. Kids suck their thumbs to sooth themselves when anxious, afraid or bored. It is not easy to break the habit so start with small things like reminding your kid everytime you see him/sucking on her thumb as most of them are not even aware that they are doing it. Since it is to sooth themselves, try giving them an alternative like a new softie-bestie to squeeze every time they are nervous or anxious.