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Calming Techniques for a Crying Baby


How to calm a crying baby

Caring for a baby is hard work. That little baby may cry more than you ever expected. In fact, babies start to cry more frequently around two weeks of age. The crying increases and peaks in the second month of life. Some healthy, normal babies cry up to 4-5 hours a day.

It is normal for a baby to cry and it is normal to feel frustrated when he or she won’t stop. Sometimes, in that moment, you might feel like you are going to lose control. In that moment, do not shake the baby. As a parent or caregiver, you are human. You have limited energy, patience and tolerance. It's normal to feel overwhelmed, helpless and even angered by the constant demands of a baby. No matter how bad it gets or how tired and frustrated you feel, shaking the baby, putting the baby down roughly or throwing the baby is never the answer. Instead, calm yourself and calm your baby.

The crying will eventually end.

Why babies cry so much

Crying is how babies communicate. While it can be challenging to distinguish between the types of cries of a newborn baby, as babies get older, parents can sometimes differentiate an "I'm hungry" cry from an "I'm tired" cry.

Babies cry because they are:

  • Hungry
  • Uncomfortable
  • Frustrated
  • Tired
  • Lonely

Sometimes, cries can easily be satisfied with food or a diaper change. Always respond to your baby's cries. You cannot "spoil" babies by picking them up when they cry. Being held is reassuring and comforting when a baby cannot express herself any other way.

Although babies cry to communicate, this crying can continue for a long time for no apparent reason. Crying can be a mystery and it can stop as quickly as it began. Your baby is not mad at you nor is your baby trying to make you look like a bad parent. 

See tips on how to stop a newborn from crying and soothe a baby.