Mealtime could be many issues for a toddler: messy, routine, fulfilling, uninteresting, thrilling, or, let’s face it, a complete tossup. Particularly in case your rising tot would fairly be elsewhere than on the desk. That’s, anyplace else however of their high chair. So what do you do when your toddler refuses to take a seat of their excessive chair?
It’s frequent for kiddos to refuse many issues through the toddler years. Maybe you chop their sandwich incorrectly, or they wished the blue plate, not the white one. A few of our little individuals even have tantrums when it’s time to take a seat of their excessive chairs. Nonetheless, breakfast, lunch, and dinner don’t must grow to be battlegrounds. Learn on to find why excessive chair refusal might occur in toddlerhood – and what you are able to do when your infant refuses to take a seat of their particular seat on the desk.1
Why a Toddler Refuses to Sit in Their Excessive Chair
In case your toddler refuses to take a seat of their excessive chair, it’s possible for one among many causes, corresponding to the next:
- They don’t like being confined to their excessive chair. Toddlers crave independence and freedom, and being strapped in a spot they will’t come and go from as they need doesn’t enable for both. It’s important that kids can transfer freely and uninterrupted, and the excessive chair can generally get in the best way of their need to maneuver their our bodies and make them refuse to take a seat in it.2
- They’re tired of mealtimes. Conversely, they may even be missing construction surrounding mealtimes. Our little individuals can battle once they really feel annoyed and can’t categorical themselves; this may be once they really feel bored, they aren’t but able to eat, or they really feel unsafe or distressed due to a transition to consuming or feeding once they weren’t ready.1
- They wish to be extra such as you. In different phrases, sitting in a “common” chair. It’s regular for kids to mimic the individuals round them and to wish to replicate what they see, which may result in toddlers refusing to take a seat of their excessive chairs.3
- Some kids usually are not but prepared to take a seat unaided in a excessive chair. This could possibly be as a result of musculoskeletal (muscle tissue and bones) stress.4
What Can Be Completed When a Toddler Refuses to Sit in Their Excessive Chair?
Though the answer for when your toddler refuses to take a seat of their excessive chair will look completely different from one kiddo to the subsequent, there are steps you’ll be able to take to make sure your infant stays put lengthy sufficient to get their each day vitamins in. In case your toddler has been protesting the excessive chair, attempt the next tricks to get again on monitor with making certain protected, productive meals for everybody.
Go Again to the Fundamentals
Double-check whether or not your youngster is appropriately restrained and comfy of their excessive chair. Over time and as kids develop, their excessive chair straps, and maybe foot help, must be adjusted, or your toddler would possibly refuse to take a seat of their excessive chair. Youngsters are much less prone to sit tight and safely when changes aren’t maintained. For these with out foot help, a generic removable footrest could make a world of distinction in terms of youngster consolation and security.5
When younger kids know what to anticipate for the common parts of their day, they will get on board with habits extra simply than if routines are ever-changing. Even when it appears your tiny human will solely wish to nibble away on the lounge flooring in entrance of their favourite cartoon (no judgment!), it’s by no means too late to set clear expectations for mealtimes – together with seating preparations – and keep boundaries surrounding these expectations. Clear expectations and consistency will help keep away from a toddler’s refusal to take a seat of their excessive chair.6
Lead by Instance
In case your toddler sees you steadily consuming away out of your seat on the eating room desk – or just getting up and down so much all through meals – they’ll possible be extra conscious of the temptation to ditch their spot, too, and refuse to take a seat of their excessive chair. Then again, in the event that they see you constantly sitting all the way down to eat in a single devoted space, they’ll understand there are household norms for mealtimes that everybody is predicted to take part in.3
Have Your Kiddo Put money into Their Consuming Area
Whether or not which means permitting them to pick a enjoyable new plate, cup, and utensil set or tasking them with the tremendous essential “job” of wiping down their tray earlier than and after meals, enable your infant to take possession of their excessive chair, as an alternative of refusing to take a seat in it. Toddlers love feeling “in cost” of issues. Capitalize on this as you’re employed towards mending the excessive chair relationship.1
Assist Developmentally Applicable Feeding Experiences
In different phrases, let your infant be messy whereas of their excessive chair to keep away from their refusal to take a seat in it. Doing so permits sensory and tactile must be met whereas offering a protected surroundings for exploring completely different tastes, textures, and meals. It solely is sensible that the excessive chair is a extra fulfilling place to be when that is the case.7
Be Intentional About Their Time within the Excessive chair
No person likes to take a seat nonetheless too lengthy, proper? Toddlers have a whole lot of power that may’t be contained for an prolonged time and this would possibly result in them refusing to take a seat of their excessive chairs. Assist your infant out of the excessive chair as quickly as they’re completed consuming, and encourage movement-rich actions earlier than every seating to maintain the wiggles away lengthy sufficient for them to replenish.2
Go away Room for Flexibility and Modifications
Some toddlers won’t ever want being in a excessive chair, and that’s okay. They may wish to attempt one thing extra like what they see you or a sibling utilizing, or they may need a much less restrictive house to focus extra on consuming and fewer on squirming. The purpose is to search out what works for you and your loved ones. Studying towers, booster seats, youngsters’ tables and chairs, and even “large” (grownup) chairs are all viable choices when the excessive chair isn’t chopping it.
In case you’re a guardian to a toddler, you understand how attempting these years could be. Gaining cooperation throughout mealtimes is not any exception. Though it’s regular for a toddler to refuse to take a seat of their excessive chair, there are methods to make the household desk extra fulfilling for everybody.
2. Gerber, M. (2002). Expensive guardian: Caring for infants with respect (Expanded ed.). Los Angeles, CA: Sources for Toddler Educarers
3. Gergely G., Bekkering H., Király I. (2002). Developmental psychology: rational imitation in preverbal infants. Nature 415:755. 10.1038/415755a, PMID
5. Kurinsky RM, Rochette LM, Smith GA. Pediatric Accidents Related With Excessive Chairs and Chairs in the USA, 2003-2010. Medical Pediatrics. 2014;53(4):372-379. doi:10.1177/0009922813510599
6. Daniels E, Mandleco B, Luthy KE. Evaluation, administration, and prevention of childhood mood tantrums. Journal of the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners. 2012 Oct;24(10):569-73
7. Coulthard, H., & Thakker, D. (2015). Enjoyment of tactile play is related to decrease meals neophobia in preschool kids. Journal of the Academy of Vitamin and Dietetics, 115(7), 1134-1140.