Why is My Toddler Suddenly Misbehaving?

Toddlers…the cutest, bravest, and sassiest of all the age groups! Toddlers are roughly ages 2-4 and they are in the prime of their developmental stage during these ages! This is when your kiddo is learning how to move their body, use their voice, express emotion, etc. However, it is also the time that they will begin to test the boundaries of their life as a functioning mini human! Sometimes this can go extremely well and other times it can lead to some problem behaviors. However, if your kiddo is known for being well behaved and is suddenly misbehaving, there may be more to it than just the terrible 2’s!

Look into Their Diet

During the toddler stage, many food allergens or sensitivities may come to light. Pending the food, if your child is allergic to or intolerant to it, they may experience changes in mood or behavior. This can be for a variety of reasons, but more often than not, it’s your child’s body just trying to tell you that something isn’t right! Gluten, dairy, and certain fruits are the most common culprits here!

They May Be in Pain

Something you have to keep in mind is that sometimes toddlers don’t know how to tell you that they are experiencing physical pain. Some kids cry, which of course is the most obvious sign of pain. However, not all toddlers react this way, especially if the pain level isn’t all that high. For example, if your toddler is suddenly misbehaving during mealtimes, you should consider taking them to the dentistfor a checkup because it is likely that they have something going on in their mouth! Headaches are also a common reason for a child misbehaving for no clear reason, they may just be in pain and aren’t sure how to express that! When in doubt, schedule a visit with the pediatrician.


It’s really as simple as that one word. Toddlers are actually the most sensitive to any kind of change in their everyday lives. This can be something as small as switching their bedsheets to something as significant as a parental divorce. Regardless of how you handle the change overall, your child is likely to act out in some way as a way to try and protest or process this change. The best thing you can do for your toddler is console them, reassure them, and make everything else in their life as normal and consistent as possible.

Lack of Sleep

Sometimes, toddlers have a tough time getting a good night’s sleep because they are growing. Their little bodies are getting bigger and bigger. They’re thinking more on their own, they have more energy, they have more emotional awareness, this can often cause sleep issues. If you notice your toddler acting out first thing in the morning or earlier than would normally indicate that they are tired, they may still just be tired!  Adjust their sleep schedule and see if it makes a difference!

Toddlers are so exciting. They are full of life, eager to explore, a little daring and a lot loving! When your toddler starts misbehaving in uncommon ways, it may simply be their way of telling you something isn’t right either in their physical body or in their daily life. Do some trial and error and help your kiddo process what’s happening to make them, and you, feel better!

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