I’ve been practicing pediatrician (child care specialists) for almost three years. But mind you, when it comes to motherhood I am just like any other first-time mom. Round-the-clock newborn care can turn your life upside down. It can bring a whirlwind experience. It is tiring but very exciting.
A crying baby is trying to tell you something. Your job is to figure out why your baby is crying and what—if anything—you can do about it.
The top most reason why babies usually cry is because they are hungry. Most newborns eat every few hours round-the-clock. Some are small frequent feeders; others are not. Babies become frantic when hunger strikes. Trust me, they are, and will always be. To avoid such outbursts, respond to early signs of hunger.
For some babies, a wet or soiled diaper is a surefire way to trigger tears. Check your baby’s diaper often to make sure it’s clean and dry.
Tired babies are often fussy—and your baby might need more sleep than you think. Newborns often sleep up to 16 hours a day. Some newborns sleep even more. I strongly suggest that you sleep when the baby sleeps.
Sometimes a rocking session or walk through the house is enough to soothe a crying baby. In other cases, a change of position is all that’s needed. Stroll for a ride. A moving car is a trusted way of putting your little one to sleep.
A baby who’s too hot is likely to be uncomfortable. Get some fresh air. Open the windows of the room. The same goes for a baby who’s too cold. Add or remove a layer of clothing as needed.
For many babies, sucking a pacifier is a comforting, soothing activity.
Too much noise, movement or visual stimulation might drive your baby to tears. Move to a calmer environment or place your baby in the crib. Dim your lights in the room.
Sometimes simply seeing you, hearing your voice or being cuddled can stop the tears. Gentle massage or light pats on the back might soothe a crying baby, too.
If you’ve tried everything and your baby is still upset, consider letting your baby cry it out. Crying won’t hurt your baby—and sometimes the only way to stop a crying spell is to let it run its course.
Good luck to all new moms out there!