Coping with a Crying Baby

Many mothers feel helpless if they cannot console their baby when they are crying. Parents often feel anxiety, and some parents can end up very frustrated and upset if their baby continually cries without being consoled. This article aims to address those common problems that parents go through when dealing with crying babies.

Reasons why your baby might be crying

There are a few reasons why your baby might be crying and once you have established the reason for your baby crying you can effectively aim to soothe them: 

  • Wind or Colic – Many babies experience some form of wind or colic and this can often be a painful experience for your baby. You can try to keep your baby upright and slowly rub their back up and down as this will help to bring up any trapped wind. 
  • Ear Infections –  Your baby may be experiencing an ear infection and this can often make them anxious and irritable. If you notice that your baby’s ear appears red you should take them to the doctor as your baby might have an infection which needs treatment.
  • Teething – Babies who are three months old or more may be developing teeth and often the pain from teething can make them upset. You could try using baby Bonjela gel, which may help to soothe the pain. You should discuss any medication with your doctor.
  • Separation Anxiety –  Some babies cry because they just cannot bear it if you leave the room and this can often exhibit the close bond the baby has formed with you. Try to reassure your baby that you are not far away and will be back soon.
  • Colds & Coughs –  This can often make your baby irritable and anxious. Try to cuddle your baby and you may offer him infant Paracetamol or Calpol if they are above 2 months old. 
  • Aches and Pains –  If your baby cries a lot due to aches and pains from the birth a treatment called Cranial Osteopathy may benefit them.
  • Thrush – Your baby may show signs of a white coating on their tongue or they may develop a nappy rush. If you think your baby might be suffering with thrush it is best to take them to a doctor to get the relevant treatment. 

How can I stop my baby from crying?

There are many things you can do as parents to help to stop your baby from crying, as described below:

  • Try changing your baby’s nappy – Your baby may be in need of a nappy change as many babies cry due to having a full nappy
  • Burp your baby –  Your baby might have trapped wind and you would need to sit your baby upright and gently stroke their back
  • Check your baby’s body temperature – Your baby might be either too hot or too cold. If they are too hot you can decrease the layers of clothing, and if they are too cold you can add another layer of clothing
  • Shower affection on your baby – Try cuddling and kissing your baby. Sometimes this may be all they really need to feel comfortable and happy again
  • Try rocking your baby –  You could try rocking your baby in a gentle swinging motion, back and forth, as this may help them to stop crying and they may also fall asleep!
  • Sing to your baby –  Your baby loves the sound of your voice the most so try singing a lullaby. This can help to soothe your baby and reassure them that you are around
  • Skin to skin contact –  Keep your baby close to your body they may feel warm and reassured 
  • Put your baby to sleep –  Your baby may be tired, so you could try dimming the lights and putting them to sleep which may help to calm them down and ensure that they wake up refreshed
  • Try giving your baby a bath – Sometimes a warm bath can do wonders and your baby may come out calm, relaxed and ready for a good night sleep
  • Give your baby a massage – Many babies love having a massage and you can try gently massaging your baby’s skin to calm them down
  • Take your baby on an outing – Outings can lift the moods of adults, as well as babies, and your baby will enjoy the time out in a different environment
  • Breastfeed or bottle feed your baby – Your baby may be hungry and in need of a good drink of milk, which may make them to fall asleep and the crying may also subside

Colic in Babies

Colic can affect many babies aged between 3-14 weeks old and it can often be a distressing experience for both parents and baby. If your baby starts crying for no apparent reason, and you have done everything you possibly could to stop them but they continue to cry, then it could be down to colic. Your baby may cry for hours continuously during the evening or daytime and they may often curl their legs.

The cause of colic is still unknown, however many medical professionals associate colic with trapped wind. It is therefore important to try to burp your baby well and make sure they are upright after feeds. Trapped wind can often cause discomfort and pain for your baby and this may be the reason why they are crying. 

You could try asking your pharmacy for over-the-counter medicines for colic or, alternatively, you could visit your GP who may be able to further advise you on what medication is best for your child.  It is important to be aware that continual crying can also be a sign that something is wrong and your baby may be suffering from an infection. It is therefore important to see your doctor at early as possible. 

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