Taking care of a crying baby is actually very tough. You cannot handle the babies if you are not aware of their mood and behavior. Crying is the most common way through which children express their tenderness and pain. Thus, it is very important for the parents to have a proper understanding of the baby’s behavior and react according to such a situation in order to calm his mind.
In this article, you will come across all the essential reasons in the form of questions that might be causing your baby some discomfort that he ends up crying. Also, you will get a better understanding of how to handle a baby and calm his mood in such a situation.
When did your baby eat last?
Compared to babies who are fed formula, breastfeeding babies will likely need to be fed more often throughout the day. Their stomachs are not that competent at holding and digesting a large amount of milk, so keep an eye on your baby after an hour or so of feeding them. You can make sure to not let them stay hungry until they resort to crying to communicate it, by reading cues like showing the rooting reflex, sucking on their fists or lips, etc.
Is your baby ill?
Signs of a fever, cold, infection can be observed in a baby if they have been acting weak, sluggish, have a temperature, etc. After soothing your baby, it is a good idea to go to a doctor to get a professional opinion on how to handle the situation.
Did your baby get enough restful sleep?
A lot of times, lack of a proper sleep schedule makes babies irritable and restless. Up until four months of age, babies usually need to sleep for at least sixteen to eighteen hours a day, with three to five naps during the day. By the age of twelve months, they need to sleep for eleven to fourteen hours, with two to three naps in a day. If your baby has been yawning, showing less activity than usual, etc. then consider soothing them to sleep.
Does your baby need a diaper change?
When their diaper becomes wet or too heavy, babies will tell you so by crying. They might keep touching their diaper etc. As precautions, it is necessary to see if the diapers you are using are soft and gentle on your baby’s skin. Also, while changing diapers, use a rash cream, and give them some time without the diapers as well. Wearing one all day without a break or pause is bound to irritate the baby’s skin.
Does your baby need attention?
Babies are in constant need of attention, reassurance, and comfort from their caregivers.
When they are given these things sufficiently, they are able to get attached to you in a healthy way, and they feel safe. You can do so by giving kisses, hugs, cuddles, carrying them around from time to time, making enough eye contact. Laugh, sing, and talk to them in a gentle and playful tone as much as possible.
Does your baby have gas?
When you are feeding your baby – be it breastfeeding or bottle-feeding, they often take in air as well. They might also do this when crying in general.
To relieve them of this discomfort, lay them on your shoulder or lap to gently rub their stomach and back. Do this for a couple of minutes and if there is any gas in your baby’s stomach, they are bound to burp it out.
Is your baby too hot or too cold?
When dressing a baby, keep in mind their skin and its sensitivity. Do not overdress them. As a rule of thumb, babies generally need one layer extra than an adult to be comfortable.
In the starting, changing their diaper or giving them a bath will take some more time than they’d like. But as you get more practice, they will not be exposed to cold air or water for longer than they need to be. Also, make sure that the water you are using to bathe your baby is the right temperature for a baby’s skin – it should be lukewarm, or around 37-38 degrees Celsius. If possible, use a thermometer to make sure.
Are there too many people around?
Though attention is nice and needed, there is also a limit to how much your baby can handle it from strangers without feeling overwhelmed or even scared. If you feel like this is the case, take your baby to a quieter room, or a corner and soothe them. Grab your child in your arms and relax his mind by reciting a song or a poem.
Things you can do to soothe your baby
- Sing or play some music: Listening to your voice, seeing your facial expressions and feeling the rhythm is often helpful in distracting your baby. Maybe they woke up from a nightmare and just need to fixate on something calmer and sweet.
- Give them a toy: It will engage them in an activity they enjoy. If they have a crib, place them in it. Toys that make sounds when shaken can also help you out.
- Go outside: Fresh air, more space, and lots of things to see – this can be a relaxing thing to do for you both. If there is a park nearby, go there and take a stroll with your baby.
- Give them a massage or a bath: A lot of babies feel relaxed and playful during a massage or when placed in a bathtub.
Babies are hard to handle but it is very important for you to be calm and patient in such a situation. Do not jerk, shake, throw or hit your baby as it will worsen the condition and will hurt the baby. Take a break and breathe in case nothing works out and try out one of the above-mentioned tips to lower down the mood swings of the baby.