Parents: What is the difference between a melt down and a tantrum?

What is the difference between a meltdown and a tantrum?


This is a tricky question! Every child has tantrums – it is actually an important part of typical development.

Children with disabilities can sometimes have meltdowns; a full “computer shut down and restart”. This can happen for many reasons that can be sensory-, communication- or emotionally-based. The reasons will be different for each child.

It can be tricky to work out what types of behaviours are “tantrum” and which are “meltdown” based.


  • Child is usually telling you what they want e.g. “I want an ice cream”.
  • Child will stop crying/hitting/screaming when they get what they want.
  • Child looks and checks you are watching them.
  • behaviour Child keeps themselves safe during.


  • Child is not communicating at all e.g. no words, pointing etc.
  • Child does not stop when problem is fixed.
  • Child does not check that you are watching them e.g. they are in their own world.
  • Child may not be concerned by their safety e.g. head banging.
  • Child only stops when they have “calmed down” or “worn themselves out”.


  • Hitting, screaming, biting, crying, kicking.

Check out at Behavior Page here and our blog post on looking after yourself as a parent here

Why we are an Amazon Affiliate….


Everyone loves Amazon! And we do too!
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Why is LHA an Amazon Affiliate?

We are Amazon Affiliate Marketers, meaning we can link to a product directly from Amazon, and if someone buys it, we get a percentage of that purchase.


    • Helps us keep our costs down
    • Helps us run the website for free
  • If you are ready to buy immediately – it is easy, especially if you use Amazon already!


  • If you are ready to purchase one of the products or books we recommend, you can just click on the Amazon link and it will take you directly to Amazon!
    • Its the second link/picture you can click on – as seen below!
    • Then purchase the item, and wait for it to arrive.
  • At the end of every month, Amazon send us a small kick back from the people we have referred.



    • At LHA we are still only recommending items and books that we or our collaborators have had direct personal experience with.
    • We will always link to the original publisher first.
    • LHA promises we will never be bombarding you with “buy this here now!” from Amazon.
  • Also it makes it easy for parents and professionals as they can add to their basket immediately, after reading about it on LHA.

You can find more about Amazon Marketing here