Are you a new mom or a dad or a caregiver and want to understand why is your baby crying? Do you panic every time your baby cries? Or may be you have tried everything but you are still not quite sure how to calm your crying baby?Then this post is for you! Read on to find out the answer to that all-important question: Why Babies Cry and how to calm a crying baby?
Babies cry a lot. Babies cry out of nowhere. So have you ever wondered why babies cry?
You perhaps feel frustrated because it seems like your baby cries all the time. But let’s face it , babies do not come with an instruction manual.
Babies cry because it is the only form of communication of their needs and wants. Therefore, It becomes all the more important to understand the reason why your baby is crying.
What do babies cry mean? Do babies cry for no reason? Find out the answers here.
Some common reasons why babies cry
1.Baby cries out of Hunger
The first and the obvious reason is that your baby is hungry. Babies can also feel thirsty. Milk is their main source of food as well as water requirement.
Babies have little tummies. Milk is digested quickly. Babies pee and poop a lot. Therefore they want to feed frequently.
Also, crying is a late sign of hunger. You could look out for early signs. For example, sucking their hands or things, searching or turning their head to find the breast or bottle.
Babies keep crying till their hunger is satisfied. So the next time your baby cries, try feeding and you will be sorted if your baby is hungry.
As a matter of fact, breastfed babies tend to feel more hungry than the formula fed babies. But it doesn’t mean that formula fed babies follow a strict time gap either. Each baby is different.
So, you don’t have to wonder if your baby is crying out of hunger though he was fed just sometime back.
A new born baby cries or perhaps will be disturbed while sleeping. Feeding the sleeping baby will definitely help.
2. Baby cries when diaper is wet or soiled
Babies cry when it is wet on their bottom . Especially new born babies cry because of this discomfort.
Check if the baby has pooped. May be the diaper is heavy due to excessive urine. Or perhaps the baby is uncomfortable when he passed urine or potty during diaper free time.
In any case, check quickly and change the diaper if needed.
3. Babies cry when they feel too hot or cold
Babies cry when they feel too hot or too cold. See if you have over dressed or under dressed your baby.
Follow your gut. Remove the extra piece of clothing if you think it should be hot for the baby. Or cover with extra clothing if you think it is cold outside.
4. Babies cry when sleepy
Sleep is a skill that the baby learns. Babies cry when they are sleepy. New born babies do not have a sleep routine yet.
A crying baby finds it difficult to fall asleep on this own. Babies need your help to get to sleep.
It may be difficult in the beginning. But with a little trial and error, you will better understand what soothes your baby to sleep. It gets better with time.
5. Babies cry when tired
Babies cry when they feel tired. They can get overstimulated by their surroundings. It could be too many people or too many toys.
Babies need rest. It could be just wanting to stay calm or have a quick nap. So take the baby to a calm area and gently soothe him.
6. Babies cry when bored
Contrary to the above point, baby cries out of boredom sometimes. Perhaps he is done with what he is doing currently. He might want to feel a change.
Gently distract him to other things or take him for a small walk. That should bring some difference and calm the crying baby.
7. Babies cry for attention
Baby may cry because she wants to be held. As simple as that. She wants to be lifted for a while. She needs attention.
Just lift the baby, rock and sway a little playfully. It will be fun for both of you.
8. Babies cry when burp is stuck
Baby cries when burp is stuck. This could be the case when the baby cries immediately after feeding. Burp the baby to ease out the pain.
Burp might be stuck even after sucking a pacifier, hiccups or crying. Therefore, burping the baby in these scenarios is good as well.
9. Babies cry due to stomach issues
Is your crying baby also wriggling, arching their back or pumping their legs? The reason could be colic.
Gently massaging on the babies tummy will help. Discuss with your doctor what should you do if you ever come across such situations.
It is also advised to have a few first aid medicines ready for the baby.
10. Babies cry during teething phase
Babies are fussy during the teething phase. Teething makes the baby restless even before one week of the actual eruption of tooth.
Frozen teethers , washcloths or even cotton bibs will provide some relief to the baby.
Alternatively you can massage the baby gums with your finger. But make sure you have cleaned your hands thoroughly.
11. General discomfort
Babies cry when something is bothering their skin. It could be a button stuck in the hair, a tag that is itching or a tight shoe.
Gently inspect their body and remove them.
12. Change of routine
Some of your unexpected and unavoidable situations may lead to a fussy baby. It could be a trip outside or shopping with the baby disturbing her usual schedule.
Some babies find difficult to adapt to change of routine. Try to plan your appointments keeping her routine in mind. Make sure she is fed and took a good nap before heading outside.
13. I need mom right now
There will be many times when the baby just wants to be with her mom. She finds comfort being in her mom’s arms.She can cry looking out for her too.
If possible, leaving everything behind for the moment. Just being your baby will make her so happy. You surely need that happiness for yourself too.
14. Stranger anxiety
Your baby may not be prepared or want to be in the arms of people she is not used to. Older babies have stranger anxiety.
It could be your extended family or relatives or friends. She may not comfortable. That new person may be very dear to you. It may be painful to see that the baby doesn’t want to be lifted by that person.
But for the baby it is really disturbing. Give her some time and space until she is ok with the new person.
Now there are some cases that we don’t want our baby to get there. But sometimes it is better to rule them out too.
Babies cry when they are ill. It could be fever or cold or tendency to vomit. We don’t wish to see our baby in such phase.
You should speak to your doctor and do as prescribed. Rush to the doctor immediately if the baby is not alert and inconsolable even after hours of crying.
16. Babies cry after vaccination
Some babies may have fever for a few hours after vaccination. It may be painful at the injection area.
Talk to your doctor how to deal with it when you visit him for vaccination.
17. Other medical reasons
Babies may cry and often become fussy for other medical reasons like lack of weight gain. Your doctor will be the best person to instruct on what to do.
How long do babies cry ?
Babies stop crying once the underlying reason is found and addressed. Try each of the above and see what soothes the baby. Once the problem is resolved, they get back to normal.
Even after all this, if your baby is unhappy and crying it out, it is best to talk to your doctor.
How often do babies cry?
Each baby is different. They may have situations when they need to communicate often. Babies cry to communicate. It depends on external factors as well.
However ensuring that their needs are met will make our life easier.
What age do babies cry the most?
Babies cry at any age. After all, that’s how they communicate. Having said that, it is easier to understand an older baby needs because we are aware of the baby’s schedule by then.
We may take some time to understand a new born baby. As parents, we are new to the baby and parenthood as well. So it is difficult in the beginning but gets better with time.
Why does baby cry in his sleep?
Babies cry in sleep out of hunger. Babies also undergo through sleep regressions.
What should you do when a baby cries?
Identify the reason why your baby is crying. Understanding the reason makes it easier to calm the baby. We can act towards the solution faster.
Is crying too much bad for baby?
We have to understand that babies cry for a reason. Crying is not bad for baby. That does not mean we have let the baby cry.
But even after all the above are tried and tested, visit a doctor soon to rule out any other concerns.
Will a hungry baby sleep?
A hungry baby cannot sleep easily. Perhaps he is too tired after crying that he falls asleep. Therefore, ensure he is well fed to have good sleep.
What are types of baby cries?
Do you know that your baby cries differently for each of his needs? Yes!
The below cry sounds will give you an idea to understand what your crying baby is trying to tell you.
- Neh – hungry.
- Owh – sleepy
- Eh – Burp)
- Eairh – Gas
- Heh – discomfort (hot, cold, wet)
Should you pick a baby up every time it cries?
If the reason is fair enough, then definitely yes. Picking your baby will provide comfort to your baby. Holding her close makes her feel safe and secure.
So, hopefully calming your crying baby is not that hard. Next time your baby is crying, look out for the above reasons. It will make a difference to your parenting journey.
Do you agree with me? What have I missed? Let me know in the comments below!