After Easter many parents find themselves battling their toddlers about candy and other sweets. Even children that don't normally get candy are surprisingly, and quickly addicted. After all, who wouldn't be? Gorgeous baskets filled with fun colored eggs over flowing with candy. It sounds like paradise. The only problem, as a parent you probably don't want your three year old hopped up on sugar all the time! So here are a few tips to help with this process.
- Out of sight, Out of mind: First of all, if your toddler can readily see, or even get to the candy you are in for a fight. So, put it away! Toddler are commonly distracted by toys and playing. So it's best they are not reminded about the candy. This will reduce the number of times they ask for it.
- Reward good behavior: Instead of just letting your toddler have candy any time they ask for it, reward their good behavior with it! If you don't catch your toddler being good, and lets face it some days you might not, then use the candy! Tell your toddler if they help put away all of their toys they can get a piece of candy.
- Don't give in: When we have a bad day our kids know how to push every button to try and get their way. Toddlers are no exception! If your child is throwing a tantrum because they want candy don't give in. When you give in you are only teaching them that throwing tantrums works! You may just see more and more tantrums in the future if you do.
- Only in moderation: Lastly, please make sure candy is being used in moderation. Children get like routine and if they are accustomed to getting 20 pieces of candy a day, they will expect it. This could increase the tantrums because they don't understand why you changed the rules. Keep the candy to a minimum for your own sanity!
If you find you are having more and more behavior problems than just candy overload you may want to seek the help of a child and family therapist. They can help you find new ways to work through the behavior issues so you can stay a sane and happy parent. For a local therapist please check out the VAST Wellness Network. They are Denver's premier wellness network for anything from physical health to mental health.