How to Calm a Hyper 1-Year-Old Child

mother and daughter holding hands
A mother takes her one-year old son for a walk. (Image: oneinchpunch/iStock/Getty Images)

Life can be very exciting for a 1-year-old. By the time your child's first birthday rolls around, she's discovered that she can propel herself using her body, figured out that different sounds mean different things and realized that the world is full of things to explore. All that excitement can make a 1-year-old hyper, especially if she's hungry or sleepy. Knowing how to calm your child when she's hyper can help both you and your child.

Step 1

Offer your baby a snack. Most 1-year-olds have the manual dexterity to eat finger foods, but they have to concentrate to grasp and eat. Focusing on food can help an infant to focus and calm down.

Step 2

Try massage. Gently stroking your baby's arms, legs and back can have a soothing effect, just as it's calming for adults to have a massage.

Step 3

Sing to your baby in a soft, soothing voice. Skip high-energy songs in favor of quieter ones, like "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star" or "Keep on the Sunnyside." Encourage your baby to sway or move calmly to the music, or hold and rock her in your arms in rhythm with the music.

Step 4

Remove your baby from the situation if you think his environment is making him hyper. If you're in a crowded, noisy place or there's a lot of stimulating color or activity in your area, your baby may need a change of scene to completely calm down.

Step 5

Take a walk. Fresh air can work wonders when you're trying to calm a hyper child.

Step 6

Encourage your baby to calm down by praising her for calm behavior with words and smiles.

Tip

A hyper toddler doesn't necessarily grow up to be a hyper child, according to William Sears, M.D., and Martha Sears, R.N., of AskDr.Sears.com. A child's activity level can vary significantly based on numerous factors, so a high activity level at age 1 isn't a predictor of future hyperactivity.

Warning

A hyper child can be frustrating to deal with. If your 1-year-old is driving you crazy and you feel like you're at your breaking point, put your child in a safe place, such as her crib or a play pen, and step into another room for a few minutes so that you can calm down.

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