Why Does My Toddler Do That?

Why Does My Toddler Do That? | toddler behavior, toddler behavior issues

Why Does My Toddler Do That?

If only we had a better understanding of why toddlers do the things they do, we might be better able to deal with their tantrums and odd little behaviors with a lot more patience and understanding. Let’s take a look at some of the typical odd behaviors and things that your toddler might do that make us scratch our heads.

Why does my toddler climb on everything?

Imagine being contained for a year or more, watching people walk and move and climb and observing structures and chairs and staircases and then suddenly you have the skills to explore and climb. You would take advantage of that exciting new skill too!

The simple answer is, toddlers climb because they can. It is new and exciting and it is a thrilling way of exerting their independence while exploring their world. Your toddler has no idea that they can fall off the back of the sofa. It’s just great fun to try to get to the top!

As a baby, the first part of the brain to develop is the brainstem, which is made up of the hindbrain and part of the midbrain. This is at the base of the skull and it controls involuntary responses such as reflexes, breathing, and heart rate. The second part of the brain to develop during the first and second year is the midbrain. The midbrain consists of the limbic system, which includes the hypothalamus, amygdala, and hippocampus. These parts of the brain are responsible for controlling thirst, hunger, sleep, moods, perceiving and reacting to emotions, stress reactions, and creating new memories. The last part of the brain to develop is the forebrain, the part of the brain responsible for higher level thinking, problem solving, planning, decision making, logic and reasoning. Without this higher-level part of the brain, there is a lack of planning, decision-making and reasoning skills. Toddlers are thinking on an emotional level only. It does not help that their physical development is excelling by leaps and bounds at this point and their ability to think simply cannot keep up. So toddlers are literally running and they have no idea where, and climbing and they have no idea why.

READ MORE
How to Do Infant Massage

At the same time, toddlers learn by repetition . . . a lot of repetition! So, if climbing onto the counter top was fun once it is going to be fun over and over and over again.

How to handle this: Keep a close eye on your climbing toddler. Not all toddlers climb, but those who do, need to be watched very carefully. Take the time to teach him how to get down. Demonstrate going down steps backwards and show her where to put her feet and hands when she is climbing down from something. If you have a “climber”, provide as much outdoor play and safe climbing experiences as possible. They are learning, exploring and getting stronger and more coordinated, after all.

Why did my toddler stop taking naps even though he is still tired?

Most 18 month-olds still need two naps per day as they are typically very active and need time to rejuvenate. There is just too much to do! Your toddler’s brain activity and physical activity is at an all time high and he just wants to go and explore and play. He simply doesn’t have time for sleep. He still needs those naps, but he doesn’t know that. He would much rather play in his bed, sneak out of bed and wander around the house, or play in his room. Usually by the time babies are able to walk and considered toddlers, they are on an adult sleeping rhythm, meaning their sleep cycles are getting closer to 90-minutes verses the 30-minute cycles babies have. This transition can be difficult for some children.

READ MORE
Family Christmas Traditions Worth Starting

How to handle this: Consistency is key. Try to keep nap time at the same time every day. Even if your baby doesn’t sleep, insist that she have some rest time in the middle of the day. Insist that she lie in her bed and not play or talk. Give him lots of opportunity to expend his energy during play time. In other words, tire your toddler out so he is more likely to be tired at nap time. Maybe you lie down with your toddler. After all, running after a toddler is exhausting work. You could probably use a little break. It is also important to make sure that your toddler is getting enough sleep at night. If he is getting up too early, try moving his bedtime up an hour. Often. Sleep begets sleep.

Why does my toddler play with her food?

This is simple, toddlers don’t know it’s food! They know it is supposed to go in their mouth, but so what? They put everything in their mouth! The bright orange of sweet potatoes, green of avocados, and light yellow of bananas are beautiful when smooshed into each other on a highchair tray. Babies are born with a natural sense of curiosity and wonder and they love to explore their world and experiment and touch everything and food is the perfect medium.

Toddlers also love different textures and exploring textures and how things feel against their skin is a great sensory activity to learn about the world and build those important connections or synapses between brain cells or neurons. They build these important new connections through experiences and they are wired to seek out these interesting experiences. When babies are adequately stimulated their brain triples in weight by their third birthday because of so many new connections in their brains. Toddlers are just taking advantage of the materials at their disposal to learn about the world they live in.

READ MORE
The Unique Challenge of Understanding My Middle Child

How to handle this: Please let them play with their food. Try to look past the mess. Maybe put a splat mat on the floor under the high chair and plan bath time after dinner. Allowing them to play and explore is important for their development. Don’t worry, some of it will end up in their mouth.

Most of what toddlers do is dictated by their immature reasoning abilities and quest to explore. Our job as parents is to simply provide experiences and keep them safe!

About the Author /

Dr. Aimee Ketchum is a pediatric occupational therapist and has been working in pediatrics for 20 years. Ketchum works in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) at UPMC Pinnacle Hospital and lives in Lancaster, Pennsylvania with her husband and two daughters. Ketchum is also the owner/operator of Aimee’s Babies LLC, a child development company.

#FOLLOW US ON INSTAGRAM
Instagram post 18081663985089005 Do you SEE me struggling as I try to open the door?? Nope? Cool . . . just walk on by. 😑😫👿⁠
📷: @modernmomprobs⁠
.⁠
#motherhoodthroughinstagram #momlife #motherhood #momstruggles #momprobs #mumlife #mommylife #parenthood #motherhoodunplugged #realmoms #momstatus #thatmomlife #realmomlife #momsofinstagram #momhumor #motherhoodrising #ig_motherhood #uniteinmotherhood⁣ #babychick⁣ #mommychick
Instagram post 18113982706026763 Praying that all the babies sleep through the night! 🙏💤⁠
📷: @hallmarkbaby⁠
.⁠
#motherhoodthroughinstagram #momlife #motherhood #momstruggles #momprobs #mumlife #mommylife #parenthood #motherhoodunplugged #realmoms #momstatus #thatmomlife #realmomlife #momsofinstagram #momhumor #motherhoodrising #ig_motherhood #uniteinmotherhood⁣ #babychick⁣ #mommychick
Instagram post 17893588471419368 ⁠Gosh, they can be such a pain in the ass sometimes. But then when they stop and look at you with those puppy dog eyes, you can’t help but scoop them up and love on them. They might be a pain in the ass but they are YOUR pain in the ass. 😂❤️ (From one mother of a strong-willed--read exhausting and opinionated--kid to another!)⁠
📷: @humorandwine⁠
.⁠
#motherhoodthroughinstagram #momlife #motherhood #momstruggles #momprobs #mumlife #mommylife #parenthood #motherhoodunplugged #realmoms #momstatus #thatmomlife #realmomlife #momsofinstagram #momhumor #motherhoodrising #ig_motherhood #uniteinmotherhood⁣ #babychick⁣ #mommychick
Instagram post 17853985321641015 I feel like several people have been going over a week past their due dates lately . . . Is it something in the water? 🤔 How many days before or after your due date did you have your baby? 👶❤️⁠
.⁠
#pregnancy #pregnant #newmom  #momtobe #pregnancylife #motherhood #mamatobe #momlife #babybump #pregnancyjourney #bumpie #EDD #preggo #duedate #birth #maternity #expecting #mumlife #mommytobe #pregnantlife #babyontheway #inspirepregnancy #mommychick #babychick
Instagram post 17899717765403522 ❤️ How to Help When Visiting a New Mom – Podcast Ep 21 ❤️⁠
.⁠
Becoming a new mother, whether it be your first baby or your sixth, is filled with so many emotions. 🎢 Figuring out your new normal can take a minute as you recover from giving birth and get to know your new baby. People will be at your doorstep in no time wanting to congratulate you and meet your baby, but sometimes people aren't necessarily thinking about what they can do for YOU to be helpful. If you know someone who has recently had a baby or if you are currently expecting, today’s podcast episode is for you! ❤️ {Link in bio!}⁠
.⁠
This episode is brought to you by @skylightframe. It's a digital picture frame that has a touch-screen display that documents all of your family’s special moments—a great gift for yourself or for an expecting or new mom. If you want to bring a nice gift when visiting a new mom, be sure to check out Skylight Frame and use our discount code BABYCHICK for $10 off your order! #ad #skylightframe⁠
.⁠
#motherhoodthroughinstagram #momlife #motherhood #newmom #postpartum #mumlife #mommylife #postpartumlife #motherhoodunplugged #realmoms #momstatus #thatmomlife #realmomlife #momsofinstagram #mommychick #motherhoodrising #ig_motherhood #uniteinmotherhood⁣ #babychick⁣
Instagram post 17920976449353517 💪 Mom Hacks for Staying Fit After Having Kids⁠
.⁠
Going to keep it real here, your fitness game is going to change after having kids. If you were crushing it before having babies, you're going to find that the free time for working out isn't what is used to be.⁠
.⁠
Regardless of where you were at, there are things you can do to make your heath a priority and be a good example to your little ones.⁠
.⁠
1. Don't rush back. There's no gold star here. Take your time, get the clearance from your OB/midwife and start when you're ready.⁠
.⁠
2. Schedule your workouts. Like most things in life now, you're on a schedule. Create time in your new life for you -- you'll thank yourself later.⁠
.⁠
3. Ask for Help. Chances are high that the Mom down the street is looking for some kid free time as well. You take an hour, she takes an hour and we're all better off for it.⁠
.⁠
4.  Embrace the little things. Your day will present opportunities to get your butt moving. Find them.⁠
.⁠
5. Get a new outfit. Because, duh.⁠
.⁠
6. Join a fitness community. It's scientifically proven that external motivators work when it comes to starting and sticking with a fitness routine. Utilize your community for support and motivation.⁠
.⁠
Words & 📸 : @juna.moms⁠
.⁠
#fitmom #newmom #fitness #fitspo #momlife #fitnessmotivation #fitlife #healthylifestyle #healthyliving #fittip  #motherhood #momtobe #mommylife #momsofinstagram #babychick #fitfam
Instagram post 17847795697730464 Royalty or not, we’re all just trying to do our best. ❤️⁠
(quote: Kate Middleton)⁠
.⁠
#motherhoodthroughinstagram #momlife #motherhood #mommychick #mumlife #mommylife #parenthood #motherhoodunplugged #realmoms #momstatus #thatmomlife #realmomlife #momsofinstagram #momhumor #motherhoodrising #ig_motherhood #uniteinmotherhood⁣ #babychick⁣
Instagram post 17863400905557801 Becoming a mother makes you realize you can do almost anything one-handed. 💁‍♀️⁠
📷: @hanna_wol⁠
.⁠
#motherhoodthroughinstagram #momlife #motherhood #momstruggles #momprobs #mumlife #mommylife #parenthood #motherhoodunplugged #realmoms #momstatus #thatmomlife #realmomlife #momsofinstagram #momhumor #motherhoodrising #ig_motherhood #uniteinmotherhood⁣ #babychick⁣ #mommychick
Instagram post 17865176050536267 Tell this to your kids when they are having a hard day or struggling. ❤️⁠
📷: @momthesedays⁠
.⁠
#motherhoodthroughinstagram #momlife #motherhood #momstruggles #momprobs #mumlife #mommylife #parenthood #motherhoodunplugged #realmoms #momstatus #thatmomlife #realmomlife #momsofinstagram #motherhoodrising #ig_motherhood #uniteinmotherhood⁣ #babychick⁣
Instagram post 18004050754269786 "All the feelings apply to all the moms, in all the stages. We're more alike than not." ❤️⁠
(quote via @catandnat)⁠
.⁠
#motherhoodthroughinstagram #momlife #motherhood #momstruggles #momprobs #mumlife #mommylife #parenthood #motherhoodunplugged #realmoms #momstatus #thatmomlife #realmomlife #momsofinstagram #mommychick #motherhoodrising #ig_motherhood #uniteinmotherhood⁣ #babychick⁣
Instagram post 17844140491774206 ⁠🎵 I’ve got my whole world in my hands
I’ve got my whole wide world in my hands
I’ve got my whole world in my hands
I’ve got my whole world in my hands 🎵
.
When you meet your baby(ies) and your whole world changes. 💕
📷: @megbed
.
#motherhoodthroughinstagram #momlife #motherhood #twins #twinsmom #mumlife #mommylife #parenthood #motherhoodunplugged #realmoms #momstatus #thatmomlife #realmomlife #momsofinstagram #mommychick #motherhoodrising #ig_motherhood #uniteinmotherhood⁣ #babychick⁣
Instagram post 18110828746014338 The first year after baby is the leading time when marriages break up. The extra stress, lack of sleep, and major life changes can all contribute to communication breakdown and losing intimacy. 💔 That's why protecting relationships is such an important part of postpartum planning (done in pregnancy). Parenthood is an emotionally provocative experience. These heightened emotions help you tune into your baby's needs, but it can also help you tune into each other.⁠
.⁠
Speak your partner's love language in postpartum. Send this resource to your loved one so that they can make you feel loved and supported in a meaningful way.⁠
Words & 📸: @birthbossco⁠
.⁠
#postpartum #postpartumlife #newmom #newparent #momlife #mumlife #motherhood #4thtrimester #fourthtrimester #motherhoodunplugged #parenting #motherhoodrising #momsofinstagram #mommychick #babychick #lovelanguage #mommylife #marriage #relationships
Instagram post 17934950050319412 EXACTLY! 🙌 I wish more moms knew this and didn't feel pressured to say yes automatically to guests--of course, unless they want to! 😊 But you can always say no and not right now. Take your time to bond with your new baby. If you want people to come over, great! But don't feel bad if you don't and want more time alone with your family. People who love you should understand. ❤️⁠
(quote via @psychedmommy)⁠
.⁠
#motherhoodthroughinstagram #momlife #motherhood #momstruggles #momprobs #mumlife #mommylife #parenthood #motherhoodunplugged #realmoms #momstatus #thatmomlife #realmomlife #momsofinstagram #mommychick #motherhoodrising #ig_motherhood #uniteinmotherhood⁣ #babychick⁣
Instagram post 18003898246270151 YUP! Thought I would run a tight ship but turns out I can't contain this circus. 🤦‍♀️⁠
📷: @badparentingmoments⁠
.⁠
#motherhoodthroughinstagram #momlife #motherhood #momstruggles #momprobs #mumlife #mommylife #parenthood #motherhoodunplugged #realmoms #momstatus #thatmomlife #realmomlife #momsofinstagram #momhumor #motherhoodrising #ig_motherhood #uniteinmotherhood⁣ #babychick⁣
Instagram post 17892508969418384 When you go out of town for a few days and your family realizes all that you do for them and the house. 😂⁠
(quote via @playdatesonfridays)⁠
.⁠
#motherhoodthroughinstagram #momlife #motherhood #momstruggles #momprobs #mumlife #mommylife #parenthood #motherhoodunplugged #realmoms #momstatus #thatmomlife #realmomlife #momsofinstagram #momhumor #motherhoodrising #ig_motherhood #uniteinmotherhood⁣ #babychick⁣ #mommychick
Instagram post 17857907638591275 Dinner time with toddlers can oftentimes be hectic and stressful. Sometimes they’ll eat what you’ve made them and other times they won’t. 😒 We’ve been there! This is why we are sharing two yummy dinner recipes that have been toddler approved that the whole family can enjoy—Taco Pizza and Stuffed Sweet Potatoes! 😋
.
We substituted sour cream in these recipes with @stonyfield YoBaby yogurt because it provides not only the calcium they need, but also probiotics, protein and vitamin D! 👍 (Our pediatrician says our little guy needs 2-4 servings of dairy per day!) The yogurt still has that tangy flavor that you’re looking for but with even more benefits! Cheers to full tummies and happy families! 🙌 #ad #stonyfield
📹: @trippfilms
.
#toddlermeals #dinnerideas #dinnerrecipes #foodfortoddlers #toddlerlife #stonyfieldorganic #stonyfieldyogurt #stonyfieldyobaby #momlife #toddlerfoodideas #mommychick #babychick #mumlife #motherhoodthroughinstagram #momsofinstagram #motherhoodrising #momstruggles #uniteinmotherhood #parenthood #dinnertime
Instagram post 17873539714477826 Some days I feel like I am totally kicking butt and taking care of business as a mom . . . and other days I'm like, "Do I really have to adult today?" 😫😴⁠ #WeekendsDontExistWhenYoureAParent #NoDaysOff⁠
📷: @decade2doodles⁠
.⁠
#motherhoodthroughinstagram #momlife #motherhood #momstruggles #momprobs #mumlife #mommylife #parenthood #motherhoodunplugged #realmoms #momstatus #thatmomlife #realmomlife #momsofinstagram #momhumor #motherhoodrising #ig_motherhood #uniteinmotherhood⁣ #babychick⁣
Instagram post 18076599439134453 You're becoming the person you are meant to be. 💗⁠
(quote via @januaryharshe)⁠
.⁠
#motherhoodthroughinstagram #momlife #motherhood #momstruggles #momprobs #mumlife #mommylife #postpartum #postpartumlife #motherhoodunplugged #realmoms #momstatus #thatmomlife #realmomlife #momsofinstagram #mommychick #motherhoodrising #ig_motherhood #uniteinmotherhood⁣ #babychick⁣  #4thtrimester #fourthtrimester #newmom
Instagram post 18010968127252794 Did you know that in some locations there are Mother's Milk Banks (@austinmilkbank)? They are nonprofit banks that collect donor human milk for babies in need. We love mamas like @lololovelyco who are donating their milk while also breastfeeding! I wish I had made enough milk when I was breastfeeding my son to have done the same. But I'm so grateful for mothers who can! Spreading the love to all of you milk making mamas! 🤱💗⁠
📷: @lololovelyco⁠
.⁠
#breastfeeding #motherhood #momlife #postpartum #nursing #breastmilk #normalizebreastfeeding #newmom #mumlife #newbaby #breastpump #breastfeedingfact #motherhoodthroughinstagram #mommylife #motherhoodunplugged #realmoms #momstatus #thatmomlife #realmomlife #momsofinstagram #motherhoodrising #ig_motherhood #uniteinmotherhood⁣ #mommychick #babychick⁣
Instagram post 17882796163445028 Happy Halloween! 🎃 Hope there is minimal (to no) whining and you don't have to break out your inner Mary Poppins to still create a magical evening with the family. ⁠
.⁠
And if there is some toddler nonsense, remember you can eat their candy while they sleep. 😜⁠
📷: @hipmomma007⁠
.⁠
#motherhoodthroughinstagram #momlife #motherhood #momstruggles #momprobs #mumlife #mommylife #parenthood #motherhoodunplugged #realmoms #momstatus #thatmomlife #realmomlife #momsofinstagram #momhumor #motherhoodrising #ig_motherhood #uniteinmotherhood⁣ #babychick⁣ #mommychick #happyhalloween #halloween #halloweencostumes
Instagram post 18026714824240302 Pretty much. 😒⁠ #momofatwoyearold
(quote via @mommy_cusses)⁠
.⁠
#motherhoodthroughinstagram #momlife #motherhood #momstruggles #momprobs #mumlife #mommylife #parenthood #motherhoodunplugged #realmoms #momstatus #thatmomlife #realmomlife #momsofinstagram #momhumor #motherhoodrising #ig_motherhood #uniteinmotherhood⁣ #mommychick #babychick⁣
Instagram post 17882685211447052 Psycho moms have more fun. 🤣 But for real though, I would have been scared sh*tless if I was a child and this kid was in my class. 😱 #happyhalloween!
📷: unknown⁠
.⁠
#motherhoodthroughinstagram #momlife #motherhood #halloween #kidscostume #mumlife #mommylife #parenthood #motherhoodunplugged #realmoms #momstatus #thatmomlife #realmomlife #momsofinstagram #momhumor #motherhoodrising #ig_motherhood #uniteinmotherhood⁣ #babychick⁣
Instagram post 17882232535453301 Some solid advice for new moms. ❤️⁠
📷: @debiandbebi⁠
.⁠
#motherhoodthroughinstagram #momlife #motherhood #momstruggles #newmom #mumlife #mommylife #parenthood #motherhoodunplugged #realmoms #momstatus #thatmomlife #realmomlife #momsofinstagram #mommychick #motherhoodrising #ig_motherhood #uniteinmotherhood⁣ #babychick⁣
Instagram post 17880589438445237 You know your child better than anybody. Do what YOU feel is best for your child and your family.  No explanations necessary. ❤️⁠
📷: @moderndaywonderland⁠
.⁠
#motherhoodthroughinstagram #momlife #motherhood #momstruggles #momprobs #mumlife #mommylife #parenthood #motherhoodunplugged #realmoms #momstatus #thatmomlife #realmomlife #momsofinstagram #parenting #motherhoodrising #ig_motherhood #uniteinmotherhood⁣ #babychick⁣ #mommychick
  • Sort by:

  • Category:

  • Tag:

  • Type: