Ahhh, the meltdown. As a parent of a special needs individual, you have probably heard of this term often. Not to be confused with a tantrum, meltdowns are an autistic characteristic feared and dreaded by both caregivers and autistics.
The best definition for a meltdown is a total loss of behavioral control. This total loss of behavioral control consumes and overtakes the individual, and need external help from their caregiver to return to normal composure.
Recognizing when a meltdown is about to happen is imminent for preventing/avoiding one in future. The child needs to learn to recognize defuse this type of unacceptable behavior before they reach adulthood where they are able to do more damage.
Today we help differentiate the difference between a tantrum and a meltdown and in the next post- How to prevent and minimize damage.
1. The first key feature is that an individual on a meltdown does not look or care for his surrounding, whereas an individual on a tantrum is looking for a response to their behavior.
2. Watch out! A child on a meltdown does not care about their's or other's safety, while a tantrum trotting kid will look out for their own safety.
3. Meltdowns will wind down by themselves irregardless of the social situation. if the situation is resolved, the tantrum will end, even if abruptly.