A fussy baby can wreck a new mom’s sleep and peace!
The first cry of your baby, undoubtedly, is a thrilling experience. But when your baby cries incessantly and without any apparent cause, it becomes frustrating as new parents. Sometimes, you may not fully comprehend the reason behind his crying and you are unable to find the solution to simplify the process. To help you understand we have compiled few effective “baby-whisperer” tactics in this article for you.
Most Common Reasons For Being A Fussy Baby:
Everything is new to your baby. After the warmth of the womb, the physical world as we live in it may feel strange and cold for him and some babies might take a long time to get adjusted. This is but one of the reasons your baby can be fussy about his sleep or meal times. Here are a few common fussy baby causes:
Gas is a common problem with babies, as their primary nutrition is milk. Hence, it is very important after every feed to make your baby burp. If he does not burp, it can cause gas in his stomach making him feel uncomfortable. If you observe your darling suffering from gas, try the following steps:
- Gently lay your baby over your stretched legs on his stomach and lightly rub his back.
- Lay him back and move his legs in bicycle motion.
- You can also give him some medicinal drops that can relieve his trapped gas (as advised by your pediatrician).
Sometimes colic can be the reason for incessant crying. Colic is observed in around one-fifth of babies, usually around 2 weeks to 4 months in age. Colic babies will cry non-stop for three hours or more in a day for several days in a week. If your child is colicky, lay your baby in your arms and cradle him close to you and swing him back and forth. The condition normally settles by itself in about three months. If not, please see a doctor as soon as possible.
3. By Nature:
Some kids are by nature fidgety and prone to fussiness. If your child belongs to this group, take a deep breath! There is nothing much you can do about it, except be very patient and gentle with them (and on yourself!) and make sure they are comfortable at all times. Do not lose your temper, and make sure you always soothe your fussy baby, in spite of her cranky behavior! Have faith, as this too shall pass. Your kid will soon grow bigger and your temperament will most probably change for the better.
There are times, when your baby’s little tummy is not full and he is crying out of hunger. This especially happens when you are out for a long time and your baby has got exhausted and may be feeling hungry. So check with him, if you are breastfeeding, offer breast feed or the formula milk (if he is on formula feed). If you have difficult following a scheduled invest in a “baby diet” journal or notebook, and note down his feed times. There are also online applications that you can download on your phone, which can help you track your baby-feed time. Such as this –
5. Diaper Issues:
You must make it a habit to check your baby’s diaper whenever he is crying continuously. Your baby’s urine, combined with the bacteria in her stools, could lead to nappy rash, which might be the cause of his fussiness. In general, experts advise a baby’s diaper to be changed every 2-3 hours (even if it is clean). For best results, use cloth diapers during the day, which can be easily changed, washed and reused.
Tips To Handle A Fussy Baby:
1. Wrap With Love:
You must learn to cuddle and swaddle your baby in such a way that it falsely lulls the infant in thinking that he is now in a cosy womb. Keep his arms inside the wrap to restrict movement and let him feel cozy in the warmth of the blanket or your arms for a few minutes. This will do wonders for your fussy baby. But do make sure you learn to swaddle the right way, so that you don’t do any unintentional harm to your child!
Sometimes some babies are more comfortable in their dad’s strong arms as his arms can rock him more quickly and swaddle him more tightly. So, give yourself a break and take your husband’s help in calming down your fussy newborn.
2. Get Some Sound:
When your little one was in your womb, he was constantly listening to the sounds of your heartbeat. In a typical sleeping environment, babies are made to sleep in a silent room. While it works for many, it may not be ideal for other “sound-loving” babies. If your baby falls in this category, try the following methods:
- Gentle, melodious baby rhymes in low volume during nap time.
- Whirring fans can be a soothing music for some naughty little ones.
- White noise like sounds of waves on a beach or sound of gentle rainfall.
[ Read: Baby Not Sleeping ]
3. Take A Walk:
If your baby is fussy and heading to a crying bout, take him out for a walk which can distract him and calm him. Some babies will find walking comfortable as it serves as fodder to their observation skills and help them enjoy the surroundings. They can even fall to sleep while walking!
A pram will be comfortable in such times, while a baby sling can offer that much-needed body warmth to your fussy infant. A park is the best place to walk by; avoid roads and walking under the hot sun. Make sure you take everything needed for a walk with your baby, including a fully-charged phone.
4. Baby Massage:
A baby massage is a wonderful way to calm your baby. Massaging will help relieve his body muscles and increase blood circulation in his body. Your baby will enjoy body massages as it helps to sleep calmly. Keep your phone on silent mode before making him sleep and give him a peace environment.
If possible, make this a regular practice in your baby’s schedule, as baby massages are supposed to have lasting benefits in a child’s well being. You can administer the massage yourself, or ask an experienced elder or even hire a professional nanny to do it.
5. Check His Comfort:
Often, a child’s fussiness may be indicative of some discomfort in his body or surroundings. Check his clothes, if they are too tight, that can also be the reason behind his fussiness. Make sure the baby does not wear ill-fitted clothes. In a tropical country like India, loose cotton clothes are always preferable.
Also make sure your baby is not allergic to any of the clothes covering him. Check for any insects or uneven bumps on the mattress.
Obviously, when your baby is fussy, it will make you frustrated, but remember it’s not easy to be parents! Growing your child comes with big responsibilities, so you must be patient. We also encourage you to talk to the elders and other mothers in your family or friends’ circle, to ease your panic, and hope the above discussed ideas will help you in taking care of issues with your baby’s fussiness. If your baby still continues to be fussy, in spite of all these measures, it is best to consult your pediatrician.
Do share your experiences or tips on how to calm a fussy baby with us.
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