Parenting tips: How to improve toddler behavior

Toddlers are infamous for tantrums and other behavior issues. To encourage listening and cooperation, follow these parenting tips.

By Mayo Clinic Staff

Life can be frustrating for toddlers. Though eager to be independent, young children can't always move as swiftly as they'd like or clearly express their needs. They also tend to have trouble dealing with limits, compromise and disappointment. This can lead to tantrums and misbehavior.

But you can teach your toddler to behave well by providing love, clear rules and a degree of routine. Consider these practical parenting tips.

Show your love

Make sure your displays of affection for your child outnumber any consequences or punishments. Hugs, kisses and good-natured roughhousing reassure your child of your love. Praise and attention also can motivate your toddler to follow the rules.

Prioritize rules

Rather than overloading your child with rules from the outset — which might frustrate him or her — prioritize those geared toward safety first and gradually add rules over time. Help your toddler follow the rules by childproofing your home and eliminating some temptations.

Oct. 13, 2016 See more In-depth