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Toddlers love playing with toys. However, sometimes they can get obsessed with a particular toy or group of toys. Experts believe that this is one symptom of autism in 13-month-old babies. Find out more about this here and the steps to take to deal with toy fixation.
After researching for hours on end, you get your child some of the best toys to enhance physical and mental development. But what do you do when she takes to just one toy or a group of toys and refuses to part with them? As long as it’s a temporary fixation, there’s no reason to be alarmed. But if she becomes obsessed, you might want to dig deeper and look for answers.
Toddler Obsessive Behaviour for Toys
Children love to hang on to a particular toy or a group of toys. These fixations are usually short-lived. Yet, if your toddler is obsessed with a toy and insists on taking it everywhere, you might need to delve deeper. Studies have shown that this behaviour could be indicative of autism. However, unless there are other signs of autism in your toddler there isn’t any need to panic. Your child’s doctor will be able to help.
Causes of Toy Fixation in Toddlers
- A child’s mind is developing and can focus only on a few things at a time, toys being one of them. So, when a toddler finds a toy that she really likes, she may want to hold on to it and explore it further.
- The changes that a toddler comes across every day can sometimes be overwhelming. Toys can offer solace and keep her calm. Though it may sound silly to adults, her young mind finds comfort in the company of her favourite toy.
- Unless the doctor suggests otherwise, you don’t need to be worried about your toddler’s obsession for a toy. However, it’s also important to help her gradually overcome the fixation. Keep in mind that using force doesn’t help.
Treatment for Toy Obsession in Toddlers
1. Don’t lose the toy
Hiding the toy or feigning its loss may seem an easy way to treat your toddler’s fixation. However, it’s a very bad idea. Since your child finds solace in the toy, losing or hiding it will only upset her.
2. Draw the line
One of the best ways to reduce your child’s fixation to a toy is to let her know that the toy will not be allowed everywhere. You can let her sleep with it and play with it, but don’t allow her to take it to school or during outings.
3. Find new distractions
Though your toddler may seem obsessed with a toy, she can still be interested in a lot of other things too. Get her involved in activities like colouring and building things using simple blocks. Take her out on walks and introduce her to insect and plant life. Having her develop interests in a variety of things will mellow the fixation.
As your toddler grows up, she’ll slowly get over her toy obsession and move over to other things. In the meantime, however, you can stimulate the child’s interest in other objects and activities.