Since a baby cannot talk, the only way they can communicate with you is by crying. Whether they are hungry or need a nappy change or just want you to cuddle them, all they can do is cry and let you know. But why exactly are they crying is what you need to find out and comfort them.
Babies between the age of 3 to 16 weeks tend to cry more. This is often called as persistent crying or purple crying where your baby starts crying again just when you think you have comforted them.
The first thing you can do to comfort your baby is by asking them in a soothing voice what the matter is. Your voice can help your baby is calming down. Find out if your baby is hungry or needs a diaper change. She may just want to cuddle or play with you. You baby’s cry may change depending what she needs. But don’t worry, with time you will recognize what your baby wants.
Your baby is completely dependent on you for everything. So until she can find other ways to communicate with you, you need to look out signs what your baby is trying to say. Is she sucking her fingers or hands? Is she looking at something? She may be needing your help.
Let’s take a look at why babies are always crying and how you can soothe them.
Your Baby Is Hungry
One of the most common reasons why your baby cries is because it is hungry, especially when the baby is still a new born. The younger the born, the more likely it will cry due to hunger.
Since a baby’s stomach is small, it won’t hold much food and you have to regularly feed them. If you are breastfeeding your baby, then try offering your breast even if you feel it hasn’t been much time since your baby’s last feed. Over time your baby will learn to let you know when it’s full by letting go of the breast.
And if you are formula feeding your baby, then she could be needing more milk after her last feeding. But, every baby is different. If she is not finishing her feeds completely, then you may have to feed her again sooner. Keep feeding your baby if she wants, even if she is crying.
Your Baby Is Having Colic
If your baby is healthy but still cries for more than 3 hours per day and 3 days per week then she is said to have colic. This doesn’t mean that your baby has some kind of disease. It will go away on it’s own with time.
Your baby might feel frustrated, clench her fists, refuse any kind of soothing efforts or draw her knees. While the exact reason for such crying is not known, many experts believe that this is just a normal development stage for some babies.
Some other experts believe that this could be due to stomach problems like allergies due to breast or formula milk. It can also be due to gas or constipation.
If you believe that your baby is crying more than normal then take her to your doctor so that you can rule out any other causes.
Living with a baby who cries excessively can be stressful so always remember to care of yourself too so that you can have the patience to look after your baby and soothe her. This is just a passing phase which might go away in 3-4 months.
Your Baby Needs Cuddling
Sometimes babies just need to feel safe and comforted. They need to be cuddled, feel your skin and looking for your reassurance and comfort. So your baby cries can just mean that it wants to be held.
Hold your baby close to you, sway her and sing lullabies that will help in distracting her and comfort her.
You can also buy a baby carrier if you want to keep your baby close to you for longer periods of time. Your baby might love the sound of your heartbeart, the smell and warmth of your body.
Your Baby Is Just Tired
If your baby is over-tires, then she may find it hard to sleep. If the baby is still newborn, then recognizing the sings can take some time. Crying for even small things, staring at a blank space or being still can be some of the sings your baby is telling you that it needs rest.
Even too much attention from other visitors, lot of rocking and singing and over stimulate the baby which make it much harder to sleep. Try taking your baby to a quiet room after feeding her and make her sleep.
Babies can also feel tired if they sleep very late at night. So try to make them sleep early and maintain a consistent time.
Your baby can also cry if its body is too hot or too cold. You can check this by feeling the baby’s stomach or the back of its neck. Do not use the temperature of its hands and legs as a guide since its normal for them to feel colder than the rest of the body.
Try to maintain a room temperature between 16 to 20 degree C. You can use a room thermometer for this purpose. Also remember not to overdress your baby as it can overheat the baby.
If the baby’s tummy is feeling hot then remove a cloth or blanket and if it’s feeling cold then just add one.
Your Baby Needs Diaper Change
Your baby might cry if it needs a diaper change. While some babies don’t seem to mind until their skin feels irritated, other babies cry a lot.
Sometimes your baby might not like getting her diaper changed due to the feel of cold air on the skin. In such cases sing a song to use a toy to distract your baby while changing the diaper. With time you will become a pro and can change the diaper in no time.
Your Baby Is Not Well
If your baby is not feeling well, then it will cry in a different tone than what you are used to listen regularly. If your baby usually cries a lot and has suddenly become quiet, then it can also be sign that the baby is not well.
One of the common reasons that can upset your baby is teething. Babies are often restless during the teething phase and can cry a lot.
The only person who knows your baby better is only you. Always trust your instincts and if you feel something is not right then call your Doctor immediately.
How To Soothe A Crying Baby?
As you get to know more about your baby, you will learn better techniques on how to comfort her. If the usual cuddling a feeding is not working for you, then here are tips on how to soothe a crying baby.
Play A Constant Sound
Your baby must be used the sound of your heartbeat when she was still in your womb. She may still enjoy the sound of your heartbeat when you hold her close to you. There could also be other sounds that your baby will listen when it’s still in the womb.
Play constant sounds of vacuum cleaner or hair dryer that may help in comforting your baby and make her sleep. You can also play soothing sounds of waves, rain drops, birds chirping, etc from Youtube or any apps that can help in soothing the baby.
Sway Your baby
Babies love to be swayed and rocked. You can rock your baby while holding her in your arms and walking around or use a rocking chair or a swing.
Massage Your baby
Gently rub your baby’s tummy and back using a massage oil or cream that is specifically designed for babies. Massaging can help in better digestion and also soothes and comforts the baby. With regular massaging, your baby will cry less.
The best time to massage your baby is when it is still alert. And if your baby is crying during a massage, it means that your baby has had enough and she wants you to stop.
Change Feeding Position
If your baby is crying while feeding, it could mean that your baby is uncomfortable with the feeding position. Try changing your feeding position and see if your baby stops crying. You can also consult your Doctor to check your feeding position.
Try a more upright position if it seems like your baby feels pain while feeding. Burp your baby by gently patting on its back by holding near your shoulder. If your baby is crying even after a feed, it could simply mean that she is still hungry and wants to be fed.
Make Her Suck Something
Babies love to suck a lot. You can let the baby suck on your clean finger to soothe her or give her a dummy if you think it will help in comforting the baby.
Give A Bath
A warm water bath can help in soothing your baby. Just make sure that the water is neither too hot nor too cold. Some babies might also cry if they don’t like being in water a lot. Over time you will learn about their likes and dislikes.
What To Do If Everything Fails?
Don’t worry is all your efforts fail in soothing your baby. It is normal for babies to cry so there is no need to blame yourself.
Babies naturally cry a lot during the early weeks and it comes down gradually. Just remember that you are not the cause for your baby to cry. Have patience and try to find the sings for what your baby is trying to communicate with you.
If you are feeling irritated, gently keep your baby down and take a break for few minutes. Remember that you are the only person on whom your baby can rely on.
If everything fails, then contact your Doctor who can help you in finding a solution.
If have any more tips on how to soothe a crying baby, please share with us in the comment section below.