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Health Information For Parents
My 2-year-old recently started to hold his breath when he doesn’t get what he wants, and it terrifies me. Is this normal? – LaVonne
As frightening as it might be when your son holds his breath, it’s actually quite common among toddlers — and is likely to be more alarming to you than it is dangerous for him.
The best response to such behavior is to make sure he is safe, keep him lying down on his side, and try to stay relaxed. Most kids outgrow breath-holding episodes by the time they’re 5 or 6 years old.
Occasionally, kids may pass out for 30–60 seconds during a breath-holding spell. If this happens, talk with your doctor to be sure nothing more serious is going on. The doctor might want to test for anemia, which is sometimes associated with breath holding. When the anemia is treated, kids are often less likely to pass out when holding their breath.
Kids who have these spells hold their breath until they pass out. Although upsetting to watch, the spells are not harmful and do not pose any serious, long-term health risks.
Nail biting, hair twirling, thumb sucking, and nose picking – these childhood habits are common. Here’s how to deal with them.
Controlling outbursts can be difficult for kids – and helping them learn to do soÂ is a tough job for the parents who love them. But just about every child can improve with the right coaching.
Temper tantrums range from whining and crying to screaming, kicking, hitting, and breath holding. Get the facts on managing – and preventing – temper tantrums.
Note: All information is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor.
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