Tips for crying babies

Crying Babies

When your baby cries, it can be stressful for both you and your child. Sometimes, you will know what their cry means and you can take appropriate action. On other occasions, you may find it more difficult to stop your baby crying.

The first step is to rule out all the common causes of crying, such as hunger or a soiled nappy. If feeding or nappy changing does not help, there are a number of other things that you can try to soothe your baby:

 

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  • Keep your baby close. Try using a baby carrier or sling so that you can maintain bodily contact.
  • Give your baby something to suck, such as a sterilised (clean) dummy. Some babies suck their thumb instead. Sucking can often be very reassuring and settling for a baby.
  • Play your baby some music. Try playing some soothing, relaxing music or singing a song or lullaby. Some babies like background noise, such as a washing machine or vacuum cleaner.
  • Give your baby a bath. A warm bath can often soothe a crying baby, but it can also make some babies cry more. Always check the temperature of the water beforehand.
  • Move your baby around. Gently rocking or bouncing your baby may help.
  • Take your baby out, for example in the car or in their pram. Lots of babies like to sleep in cars and even if they wake up again when you stop, at least you will have had a break.
  • Get some fresh air. This can help you both as you will be less stressed and it may help soothe your baby. • Find something for your baby to look at, such as a rattle or mobile hanging above their cot.
  • Try stroking your baby’s back firmly and rhythmically while holding them against you or laying them face down on your lap.
  • You could also undress your baby and massage them with baby oil, gently and firmly. Talk soothingly as you do it and keep the room at a warm temperature.

 

Get into a routine

Avoid over-stimulating your baby with too much activity or new experiences. This can make them restless and more prone to crying. Instead, introduce a routine for your baby, such as a regular evening bath time and a quiet bedtime. This will help reassure your baby and may encourage them to cry less.

 

Take a break

It can be stressful and exhausting when your baby cries, particularly if your sleep is frequently disturbed. If you have tried your best to comfort your baby and are confident that their crying or behaviour does not seem unusual, it is fine to leave your baby for a few minutes.
Make sure that your baby is safely in their crib or cot and then go into another room for 10 minutes and try to relax.

You could:

  • watch television
  • listen to music
  • practise some breathing or stretching exercises
  • make a cup of tea
  • phone a friend

 

Once you are relaxed, you will be able to cope better with your baby’s crying.
Although it may seem difficult, it is still important that you have time to yourself when you are bringing up a baby. Where possible, ask a trusted family member or friend to help you out, even if it is just for an hour or so. This will give you time away from the stress of the situation and will help you return in a more relaxed state of mind.

 

Dealing with stress and anger

Take a break if your baby’s crying is making you feel stressed to the point where you are getting angry or are about to lose your temper. Never shake your baby. This moves their head violently and can cause bleeding and brain damage.

 

 

For more information:

Contact your health visitor or GP

Cry-sis who help families with crying, sleepless and demanding babies.

We have a course to raise awareness and the importance of Positive Parenting and strategies on how to enhance your relationship with your child throughout key life stages.

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