There’s nothing more heart-wrenching, and, let’s face it, sometimes nerve-wracking, than a wailing infant. Did You Know? The average newborn cries 2 hours per day. An infant who cries inconsolably at least 3 hours a day for at least 3 days a week probably has colic and will outgrow it by 3 months.
Crying Babies: 51 Tips to Soothe Your Baby
Don’t shake your baby
No matter how frustrated you get, NEVER, EVER shake a crying baby, just a few seconds of jostling can cause serious brain damage. If you can’t take anymore, put the baby down in a safe place, leave the room, and let her scream while you calm yourself down.
Try to find the reason
Check all the obvious reasons the baby might be crying. In babies under 3 months old, crying is almost always a sign of physical need, she may be hungry or gassy or wet or hot or just plain uncomfortable. So offer a breast or bottle, burp her, check her diaper, make sure her clothes aren’t pinching, and so on.
Offer pacifier or thumb
Offer the baby a pacifier, help her find her thumb, or slip your own clean pinkie into her mouth, nail side down.
Make soothing noises
Make some soothing noises. Sing, hum, or gently shush her. Some babies may also be calmed by the sound of a running faucet, a radio set on static, a recording of nature sounds or white noise, even the steady hum of the vacuum cleaner.
You can always try to move your baby around. Take her outside for a walk or a car ride, gently dance with her in your arms or a sling, rock her side-to-side, or just walk around the room.
If you just can’t make another lap around the room, try sitting on an exercise ball and gently bouncing while holding your baby.
Try massage or bath
Try massaging her or putting her in a warm, soothing bath. For babies who become invigorated by a massage or bath, it’s best not to use these methods to try to soothe them while crying.
Change the decoration of the room. Give her something new to look at, by turning on the ceiling fan or showing her a toy. And remember to stay calm and patient, after all, she can’t cry forever.
Rub her forehead
Try to rub your child’s forehead gently, especially between her eyes. This will make her feel relaxed and she will slowly get down to sleep.
Re-create the womb
Your infant may be fussy because he misses his first “home,” so simulating the amniotic environment can calm him.
Swaddle him snugly in a blanket with his arms down. Hold him while he’s on his side or stomach rather than his back.
Jiggle him gently
The rhythmic swaying resembles the movement of the womb. Make shushing sounds, or create other white noise by running a hair dryer or fan.
Use your hands
Touch stimulates receptors in the brain that calm your baby and research shows that long, smooth strokes tend to work better than short, brisk ones.
Try caressing your infant’s cheek, back, legs, or stomach. Or keep your baby close by wearing her in a front carrier.
Give some time
You don’t have to spend all day toting her around, but the more you touch her (giving her a mini-massage during a diaper change, for instance), the happier she’ll be.
The familiar tone of Mom’s voice is one of the most effective soothers for babies, according to research. So keep the chatter going, but speak quietly so your baby isn’t overwhelmed.
Release your inner pop star. Singing can also be calming. Sing calm, slow songs, such as lullabies, because the body responds to music by adapting heart and respiratory rates to the tempo.
Driving around the block combines steady motion and white noise. If driving isn’t convenient, try a vibrating bouncy seat or swing, which also have the white-noise/movement combo.
Many moms swear by baths to calm their babies. The sound of the running water and the warmth on the skin can do wonders for a crying baby. You can get into the tub, too, to add a soothing skin-to-skin contact.
Introduce a new toy or shift his attention to the family pet or a mirror (so he can gaze at himself). He may well forget all about his cranky mood.
While it isn’t safe for babies to sleep on their side or stomach, to calm a crying baby try changing positions and hold them in a side position or on their stomach.
Many babies are calmed by a gentle rocking, swaying or swinging motion.
Shift to a darker room
Switch off the lights and make a quiet and a darker room for your child to sleep. It works really well.
Pat her on the back
You can try to pat your baby boy or baby girl on the back, very softly and slowly.
Shake his booty
A way to calm a crying infant is to shake his booty.
Fold the arms of crying baby and gently hold the bottom, then rock the baby up and down in 45 degrees. Finally rock the bottom gently.
Keep reassuring him
Whisper sounds in your baby’s ears that you are going nowhere, and you are always present for him.
Act like a buffoon
When everything fails, act like a buffoon, make strange noises, wave your arms around. All in all, make yourself look like an idiot!
Give him something familiar
Pop a piece of your clothing into the baby’s crib. Your familiar smell will help to comfort him.
Get Dad to help out and give yourself a break. With his extra body warmth, strong arms and deeper voice, many mums say that Dad is king when it comes to soothing.
Keep your cool
If you get frustrated, your infant will pick up on that tension and react, and this pattern can become a cycle that’s hard to break.
Don’t try too hard
Trying too hard to calm your baby can also backfire, some simply don’t like to be handled as much as others. While you shouldn’t let infants under 3 months cry it out, it’s okay to let them fuss for five minutes.
Try these tips if your baby is crying because of teething process
Applying cool wet cloth over the painful gums helps to numb the pain.
A cold carrot is great to comfort the baby. But make sure that you are always watching as big chunks of carrot can be a choking hazard.
These toys help to distract the crying baby and sucking the toys help them to relieve the pain.
Gentle pressure helps to soothe babies. Use your fingertips to gently massage baby’s face, jaw and gums in a circular motion.
Extra virgin coconut oil
Dip your finger in the oil and rub it on her gums. Do this only once in a day. Gentle pressure helps to soothe teething in babies.
Chamomile is a popular remedy that helps babies to relax. Rub cool chamomile tea bags over your baby’s gums.
If you feel that baby is feeling too much pain you can ask your doctor for some pain relievers for teething baby like ibuprofen.
There might be few reasons why your baby is crying. Analyze them and work accordingly
This is probably the first thing you think of when your baby cries. Learning to recognize the signs of hunger will help you start feeding your baby before the crying stage. Some hunger signs to watch for in newborns include fussing, lip smacking, rooting (a newborn reflex that makes babies turn their head toward your hand when you stroke their cheek), and putting their hands to their mouth.
Stomach problems from colic and gas
Tummy troubles associated with gas or colic can lead to lots of crying. The rather mysterious condition known as colic is usually described as inconsolable crying for at least three hours a day, at least three days a week, at least three weeks in a row.
Needs to burp
Burping isn’t mandatory. But if your baby cries after a feeding, a good burp may be all he needs. Babies swallow air when they breastfeed or suck from a bottle, and this may cause discomfort if the air isn’t released. Some babies are intensely bothered by having air in their tummy, while others don’t seem to burp or need to be burped much at all.
A dirty diaper
Some babies let you know right away when they need to be changed. Others can tolerate a dirty diaper for quite a while. Either way, this one is easy to check and simple to remedy.
It seems like tired babies should simply be able to go to sleep, anytime, anywhere. But it’s harder for them than you might realize. Instead of nodding off easily, babies may fuss and cry, especially when they’re overtired.
Wants to be held
Babies need a lot of cuddling. They like to see their parents’ faces, hear their voices, and listen to their heartbeats, and can even detect their unique smell. Crying can be their way of asking to be held close.
If your baby feels chilly, like when you remove her clothes to change a diaper or clean her bottom with a cold wipe, she may protest by crying.
Newborns like to be bundled up and kept warm, but not too warm. As a rule, they’re comfortable wearing one more layer than you need to be comfortable. Babies are less likely to complain about being too warm than about being too cold, and they won’t cry about it as vigorously.
Something painful and hard to notice
Babies can be troubled by something as hard to spot as a hair wrapped tightly around a tiny toe or finger, cutting off circulation.
Teething can be painful as each new tooth pushes through tender young gums. Some babies suffer more than others, but all are likely to be fussy and tearful from teething at some point.
Want fewer stimulation
Babies learn from the stimulation of the world around them, but sometimes they have a hard time processing it all, the lights, the noise, being passed from hand to hand. Crying can be a baby’s way of saying, “I’ve had enough.”
Not feeling well
If you’ve met your baby’s basic needs and comforted him and she’s still crying, she could be coming down with something. You may want to check her temperature to rule out a fever and be alert for other signs of illness.
Things to remember
When a baby cries, it triggers the release of the hormone prolactin (dubbed “the mothering hormone”) in moms, which creates an urge to pick up the baby and meet her needs. You’re hardwired to soothe your baby, and when that doesn’t happen, it can make you feel like a failure. But your baby’s fussiness is not a reflection on your parenting skills, and it’s completely normal for a baby to cry even when there doesn’t seem to be a direct cause. If you’re ever in doubt, however, don’t hesitate to call your pediatrician to make sure there isn’t an underlying problem.