The life of a new parent is incredibly exciting, But, it can also be incredibly frustrating, especially when your tiny bundle of joy seems to cry nonstop.
The good news is that, with the right steps, you can help soothe your crying newborn. In this blog, expert pediatrician Gina Labovitz, MD, FAAP, at Ross Bridge Medical Center Pediatrics discusses why your baby might be crying and what you can do to help calm your little one.
Why do babies cry?
Babies cry primarily as a way to communicate. As a new parent, you might think that all crying sounds the same, but as you become closer with your baby, you’ll notice that your baby may cry differently for food, a nap, or other needs.
Some common reasons babies cry include:
- Wet or soiled diaper
- Lack of a nap
- Hunger or thirst
- Pain or illness
- Anxiety or fear
- Overstimulation from lights, sound, or the environment
5 ways to soothe your crying baby
The best tactic for soothing a crying newborn depends on the culprit behind the crying. Follow these five tips and jot down what works and what doesn’t work for your crying baby.
1. Address any obvious problems first
The first thing you should do is check to see if there is an obvious problem. If your baby has a wet or soiled diaper, changing their diaper may be all that’s needed to stop the crying. Likewise, if it’s past time to feed or bathe your baby, or put your baby down for a nap, take the needed action first. If your baby is still crying after addressing any obvious problems, move on to the next few techniques.
2. Make your baby feel secure
Babies often feel insecure or scared, which can lead to crying. Swaddling is a tried-and-true tactic for making babies feel secure. At your next appointment with Dr. Labovitz, ask how you can properly swaddle your baby in a blanket. You can also try carrying your baby in a front-pack carrier or simply hold your baby close as you sit in a rocking chair.
3. Play calming sounds
If your baby is still crying, they may need some soothing sounds. White and pink noise, as well as ambient and nature sounds, may be able to help your baby calm down. It’s as easy as downloading a free sound app on your phone and playing tracks with waterfalls, bubbling creeks, birds chirping, and other soothing sounds. Play around to see which types of sounds your baby might respond to.
4. Cure boredom
Yes, infants can get bored, too. If your baby seems to be crying for no reason at all, perhaps they’re just bored. Try humming a tune, singing to your baby, or playing some soft and relaxing music. You can also give your newborn something safe to hold as you supervise.
5. Get outside
Getting some fresh air could be just what your baby needs — and it can be fantastically satisfying for you, too. Humans, infants included, have a natural desire and need to spend time in nature. In fact, studies show that spending time outside can improve health in a number of ways. So try walking in the park or just sitting down in your own yard. You may be surprised at the difference it makes.
To learn more about soothing a crying newborn, or to get any other information about caring for a newborn, book an appointment online or over the phone with Dr. Labovitz at Ross Bridge Medical Center Pediatrics.