Reviewed by Lisa Blohm, PhD, MSN, RN
in this article
Toddlers aren’t known for their easygoing nature.
Toddler-hood is a time of exploration and discovery — and a wide new range of emotions and moods.
Sometimes these new moods are expressed in less than ideal ways.
It’s important to remember that toddlers are little people dealing with big emotions and it’s a steep learning curve to figure out how to express these new feelings. (Of course, easier said than done, right?) After toddler #3, however, I found a few things that are a BIG help for overcoming crazy toddler mood swings. And, my fellow Madison area mommas, I’d like to share them with you.
4 Natural mood stabilizers for kids
The overall mood in our household is greatly improved when I’m proactive with these products! Also, this is written in the context of helping with a moody toddler, but these products can help out moody kids at any age — including the teenage years!
This lineup would also be beneficial for moms (or anyone, really) struggling with anxiety, moodiness, or stress.
In other words, most of us can benefit from this lineup.
Not in the reading mood and just want to jump to checkout? We made it easy for parents by putting all our secrets together in an easy bundle – Kids’ Mood Support Bundle.
Natural Mood Stabilizer Secret #1: Omega 3 Fatty Acids
Omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA are absolutely vital for brain function and mood regulation. Omega-3’s promote healthy blood flow (optimal for brain function) and are the building blocks of membranes and cell structures that are essential for brain health. EPA and DHA need to constantly be replenished from our diet, which can be hard to do for adults, much less a picky toddler. This is why a supplement is a good idea!
My family loves to use Barlean’s Omega Swirl as an easy, tasty way to get our daily dose of Omega-3’s. Our kids beg for a spoonful of this each morning (including my picky eater). It tastes just like a berry smoothie.
My advice is to give a dose to your toddler at whatever time of the day you observe that they are the moodiest. For my son, it’s right after nap time. My older children have seen it work so many times, when the little guy starts crying for no reason, they’ll shout, “Mommy! Get him some purple stuff!” (Purple stuff is what we call the Omega Swirl.)
Natural Mood Stabilizer Secret #2: Vitamin D
You may be wondering about this supplement since vitamin D is best known for building bones. But this incredible sunshine vitamin also works wonders for brain health and overall mood health. Vitamin D deficiencies are becoming much more common as we spend more time indoors and people are using more sunscreen. (Here is a great article on how to handle sun this summer.)
Vitamin D plays a critical role in basic cognitive functions, learning, mood regulation, and making memories. There are vitamin D receptors all throughout the brain. The scientific evidence clearly shows that the higher your vitamin D levels are, the happier you’ll be!
Vitamin D comes in a variety of forms, and you can administer it as liquid drops or as a chewable vitamin. Our children love the chewable vitamin D from Nature’s Plus (mostly because they’re shaped like animals!). These vitamin D liquid drops are popular too. I give everyone one vitamin D dose daily in the summer and two in the winter.
Natural Mood Stabilizer Secret #3: Tranquil Child
Tranquil Child by Oregon’s Wild Harvest contains a blend of herbs – catnip, peppermint, and chamomile. These three herbs are well known for their calming effect on humans — though catnip certainly has the opposite effect on felines!
This is an alcohol-free tincture that helps with anxiety, stress, or moodiness. I have found the effect to be remarkable! It tastes sweet and my kids never mind getting a dropper full when they’re feeling upset.
Natural Mood Stabilizer Secret #4: Chamomile Essential Oil
Think of a warm cup of chamomile tea, and your mind is instantly soothed. Chamomile has been used for centuries as a calming remedy. My family has a roller bottle mixed up and ready to go when moodiness or anxiety hits. Here’s the recipe:
CHAMOMILE ESSENTIAL OIL ROLLER BOTTLE
- 2-4 drops Chamomile Essential Oil
- 1 drop Lavender Essential Oil
Carefully drop the essential oils into a roller bottle. Fill the rest of the bottle with your carrier oil of choice (jojoba is my preference). Place the roller ball top on, gently shake to mix the oils together.
I like to apply this blend to our kiddo’s feet. Gently massage it in – use this on a moody day or when they’re feeling restless.
I also love the pre-made blend Calming the Child, by Plant Therapy. This is the perfect roller bottle to bring on the go, and we keep in close at hand for those meltdown moments!
Ditch sugar (you already knew this one – right?)
Perhaps my best bit of advice will probably come as no surprise! We all know what happens to kids when they have had too much sugar.
Chaos. Absolute chaos.
Sugar is something we try to avoid at our house as much as possible. Candy, ice cream, sweetened ‘fruit’ juice, sweet treats… those things are great for special occasions, but eating it daily is asking for trouble in my household.
Sugar has a profound effect on mood because it spikes your insulin levels. It’s this action that’s responsible for creating that “sugar high” and the inevitable crash that follows. Instead of a sugary snack, try fresh fruits, whole grains, vegetables, nut butter, or smoothies!
Find your natural mood stabilizers at The Healthy Place
Need help finding the right line-up to soothe your fractious tots? We can help you out. Stop in either of our supplements stores in Madison to chat with one of our Wellness Consultants.