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Soothing A Crying Baby

Dealing with a crying baby is one of the most stressful events new parents experience. Babies cry for many reasons. Sometimes it’s trying to figure out why your baby is crying and how to soothe it can be challenging.

Crying is a baby’s way of communicating, and their crying can mean many different things. It’s a little more difficult to distinguish different types of crying with a new baby. As they get older, parents are more able to tell the difference between "wet-diaper crying" or "I'm hungry" crying.

Some things to check for in a crying baby:

Is the baby sick?

Take the baby's temperature. If your baby has a fever and you’re not sure of its other symptoms call a pediatrician.

If your baby cries for hours at a time, call a pediatrician. Long periods of a baby’s crying can be trying for some parents.

Is the baby hungry?

Try feeding the baby. Newborns like to eat frequently.

If the baby isn't hungry, he or she may respond to sucking on a pacifier.

Is the diaper wet or dirty?

This is a common cause for crying.

Is the room too hot or cold, or is the baby overdressed or underdressed?

Is the baby lonely or afraid?

Try holding the baby and comforting him or her.

Is the baby overstimulated?

Try turning down the lights and the noise level.

Keeping Baby Calm

When a parent has made sure that the problem is not hunger or sickness or a wet diaper and the baby is still crying, try calming your baby with these techniques:

    • Swaddle the baby in a soft blanket and hold the baby next to you.
    • Sing or hum to the baby.
    • Rock the baby in a chair or swing, or gently sway your body while holding the baby close.
    • Take the baby for a ride in the stroller or car. Motion often puts a baby to sleep.
    • Distract the baby by making faces or quiet noises.
    • Give the baby a warm bath to relax him or her.
    • Use some "white noise" such as running a vacuum cleaner or hair dryer to help lull the baby to sleep.

Keeping Yourself Calm

A crying baby can be very stressful for parents. It is normal for babies to cry ... sometimes as much as 2 to 4 hours a day. Sometimes parents will find there is nothing they can do to soothe the baby. Combined with a parent's own lack of sleep and the adjustment to having a new baby in the house, a crying baby can seem overwhelming.

There are things parents can do to maintain control over the situation, even when the baby continues to cry.

    • Take a break. Put the baby safely in a crib, and take a few minutes for yourself in another room.
    • Call a friend or relative who will listen to your problem and be sympathetic.
    • Ask a trusted friend or neighbor to watch your child while you take a short break, a walk or a brief nap.
    • If you feel as though you are losing control and might hurt your child, call a hotline immediately.

It's normal for babies to cry sometimes, and it's certainly normal for parents to feel frustrated and overwhelmed by the crying. Different babies respond to different soothing techniques, and parents will eventually learn what works best with their baby. In the meantime, new parents should buil da support system of friends, relatives and neighbors who can lend a sympathetic ear and even some babysitting help!

 

 

 

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