Why Does Your Toddler Shake When Excited?

Do you have a toddler who shakes when they get excited? Why do they do this?

Is it something that all toddlers do, or is my child unique in this way?

In this blog post, we will explore why does your toddler shake when excited? We will also offer some tips for helping your child overcome this habit.

Why Does Your Toddler Shakes When Excited?

Shaking with excitement is the consequence of an immature nervous system.

Your baby’s brain is sending too many electrical signals throughout his or her body, causing him or her to shake uncontrollably. Other factors may include:


The most basic explanation for toddlers shaking with enthusiasm–and the safest–is an adrenaline reaction. Adrenaline is a hormone that causes our bodies to react in a “flight-or-fight” manner.

Adrenaline raises the speed at which our muscles contract, which might cause brief twitching or shaking. As a result of this extra adrenaline, your youngster’s body may suddenly shake when something stimulates them.

Primary Motor Stereotypies 

A primary motor stereotypy may be another reason for trembling when excited. This is when children perform “repetitive, rhythmic, fixed motions” that follow a particular pattern. These activities are usually linked to excitation, tension, boredom, or tiredness. There are common and complex primary motor stereotypies:


These may include:

  • Sucking thumbs and twirling the hair.
  • Nails or lips biting.
  • Teeth are being ground.
  • The body is rocking back and forth.


These examples might be classified as follows:

  • Flapping hands and arms.
  • Twitching hands.
  • Changing the body’s orientation.

If your child’s shaking is severe, it might be a symptom of complex motor stereotypy. These actions can be disruptive in a youngster’s life and are less likely to go away with time.

Why Does Your Toddler Shake When Excited

Is It Completely Normal For Baby To Shake?

It’s frightening to witness your newborn shaking for the first time, especially if you’re a first-time parent.

However, newborns and young babies frequently have strange twitchy actions, in which they shake and jitter a lot more often than not, it is simply part of their normal growth, and they will outgrow it.

What Causes Shuddering Attacks?

Here are some examples of normal developmental reasons why your baby may shake or make strange movements with their body: 

The Moro Reflex

The Moro, or “startle” reflex, is frequent in newborns and young infants. When your infant detects a loud noise or is startled, the Moro response is activated.

When the Moro reflex is activated, your baby’s body will stiffen, and their arms will straighten while their fists will open.

The Moro reflex occurs when your baby is startled by a drastic shift in their surroundings (usually a loud noise), at which point they should be able to outgrow it by the time they’re four months old.

Poor Coordination

Hand-eye coordination is something that individuals learn and improve with time. Until your kid has mastered the technique of moving their limbs around purposefully and smoothly, they may have trouble coordinating them.

Until your baby has the strength and coordination needed to move more “naturally,” they may create all sorts of odd and unusual shapes with their body.

Trembling When Crying

It’s quite normal for newborns to appear jittery or shake while crying. Your baby may have a quivering lip, chin, or limbs that flail around all over the place, particularly their arms.

This is a natural impulse in newborns and young infants, which should happen less frequently as your child grows.

Immature Nervous System

When your baby is overjoyed, a lack of maturity in its nervous system is to blame. When your youngster’s brain sends too many electrical impulses through his or her central nervous system when he or she is delighted by someone, a toy, or a sound, it can create an imbalanced state of excitement.

Should You Be Worried If Your Baby Shakes When Excited?

It’s rarely a cause for concern if your baby shakes when excited. However, shaking when excited isn’t always the consequence of an immature nervous system; it may also be caused by a disease or trauma that requires medical treatment.

Thinking about why does your toddler shakes when excited or baby shaking hands when excited? Here are some of the symptoms that you must watch out for.


Shaking can be one of the many signs that your baby has a seizure. Shaking, in contrast to the excitement, does not immediately subside and is typically accompanied by other seizure symptoms.

If your baby has a seizure, the shaking will last for more than 20 seconds, and the muscles will jerk violently. Your infant’s eyes will also be moving uncommonly, such as rapid blinking or strange movements.

When your baby shakes and vomits or blackouts, it might be a sign of a seizure, and you should go to the doctor straight away.

Vitamin D deficiency

If you’re formula feeding, you don’t need to take vitamin D supplements since it’s already included in the milk.

However, nursing moms will need to take a vitamin D supplement because it is not present in breast milk naturally.


Shaking and quivering in infants can worry parents into believing their child has autism.

There are a variety of symptoms and behaviors that can be linked to autism. Since each autistic kid will experience the condition differently, it isn’t correct to claim that shaking is always a symptom.

Flapping or shaking is a common self-soothing technique for autistic children. However, it’s also seen in neurologically typical youngsters.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1: What exactly is infant shudder syndrome?

Ans: Shuddering attacks (SA) are a rare benign condition that affects both infants and children in early childhood. Shivering and straining motions are observed, although the kid is fully conscious. By the time the youngster is 2-3 years old, movements usually clear up or at least improve.

Q2: Why does my baby stiffen up and shake when excited?

Ans: The idea is that your infant is stiffening because they are thrilled or even irritated. It’s also a step in their development as human beings, learning what their muscular capabilities are and how to use them.

Q3: My child is constantly shaking his hands when he is excited. Is it okay? 

Ans: While children may flail their arms while retaining emotions such as the joy of playing a game, they can also demonstrate emotional behavior. When kids are under stress, this sort of conduct might be self-satisfied.

Q4: What does shudder syndrome look like? What causes it?

Ans: Shuddering attacks are pleasant events in your kid during the first years of life. These medical episodes include rapid shaking of the head, shoulders, and, frequently the entire body. In several individuals, this has not lasted for even a few seconds.

Q5: Is it normal when a toddler clenches their fist and shakes when angry?

Ans: Yes, child clenching fists and shaking when excited is very normal behavior when they are angry. This is because they are trying to release their frustration and anger.

Q6: Why does a 5 year old shake when excited?

Ans: It’s most likely a normal part of the development and nothing to worry about. When babies are first learning to control their emotions, they may shake when they get excited. This usually goes away by school age.

Q7: My 7 year old shakes when excited. What should I do?

Ans: There’s a scientific reason behind why your toddler shakes when they get excited – it’s called the startle reflex. This is an involuntary response that happens when something unexpected or sudden occurs, and it causes the muscles to contract and the body to tense up

Q8: My toddler woke up shaking but doesn’t have a fever. Should I be worried?

Ans: It could be a sign of excitement or anxiety, or it could be a more serious condition like seizures. If your child is shaking and doesn’t have a fever, it’s important to observe them closely and contact your doctor if the shaking persists or is accompanied

Q9: Why does a 1 year old shakes head when excited?

Ans: One possibility is that they’re trying to communicate their excitement non-verbally. Another possibility is that they’re trying to release some of the excess energy that they’re feeling. Either way, it’s perfectly normal behavior and nothing to be concerned about.

Q10: Is it normal for a 2 year old to shake when excited?

Ans: Remember that tics and tremors are quite common, generally benign, and frequently short-lived.

Q11: What are the signs of autism in a 1 year old?

Ans: In addition, avoid using a voice with an odd tone to talk or babble.

  • Unusual sensory sensitivities.
  • Take a backpack or purse, for example.
  • Make strange body or hand motions.
  • Make strange use of toys.

Q12: Is it normal for toddlers to tremble?

Absolutely! While it may look like trembling, some parents report their children shaking when they are overjoyed. This behavior is often referred to as tremulous excitement or trembling joy and is a perfectly normal response to positive emotions in toddlers.

Q13: Why does my baby tremble when excited?

It happens because when they get excited, their body releases epinephrine which causes them to shake or tremble. This is an involuntary reaction that the child has no control over and should not be considered a sign of anxiety or distress.


So, why does your toddler shake when excited? Shaking from excitement is typical newborn behavior, so enjoy those exciting little gestures while you still can.

When you see your baby shaking, don’t worry; it’s part of their development, and the shaking will go away as your child’s central nervous system matures.

It’s crucial to note that babies don’t shiver because they’re chilly, just like older kids and adults. If your baby is shaking when they are not thrilled and show any other seizure symptoms such as vomiting or lethargy, go to a healthcare provider right away.

My name is Mark Joseph, and I’m on a mission to help new parents navigate the world of parenting. With over 5 years of experience as a parenting coach, I’m here to provide you with insight into all aspects of pregnancy, childbirth, and raising your newborn baby. Instagram Linkedln Facebook

Leave a Comment