Once your little one is born and you have stepped into the journey of motherhood, crying is something you will come across day in day out almost each day of the year. It is very stressful to hear a baby cry but at the same time it is also important to understand why the baby is crying. All babies cry and letting baby cry is not a solution. What you can do is help your baby and soothe him by understanding why he is crying. Here are a few common reasons why babies cry. The reasons given here are the common and researched ones but your little one could be crying for reasons apart from these too.
- Hunger: Why do newborns cry so much? Hunger is the commonest reason why babies cry. Crying is the only language known to them to communicate hunger, sleep and any kind of discomfort. There are some signs that your baby is hungry. The most reliable sign is the rooting reflex that is turning the head to one side when the cheek is touched and looking to be fed. Fussiness can be noticed in smaller babies. Many times children put their thumbs in the mouth and begin sucking it. All these indicators when present with crying will tell you that the child is hungry. Feeding baby can help you soothe them and makes them fall asleep.
- Sleep: Babies cry to sleep and this is very commonly noticed. Once sleepy they do not know what to do next or how to fall asleep so they begin to cry. Rubbing the eyes and pulling at the ears are signs that the baby is ready to sleep. As a parent, your job is to identify these signs early on and put the child to bed after the first yawn. If you fail to do so and the child gets over stimulated, then he may have trouble in falling asleep and may cry a lot. Many times gas troubles are confused with sleep. Notice the times your baby sleeps and the time interval between two naps to get an idea whether the crying is for sleep. Why do newborns cry more at night? In the early weeks, the body’s circardian rhythm is not yet established and so they wake up every two hours whether its day or night. When your baby is crying a lot, hold him close and comfort him with gentle rocking motions and soon he will fall asleep.
- Dirty Diaper: If your baby feels wet in her bottom due to a soiled diaper, she will definitely cry. The discomfort has to be taken care of as most babies cry whenever they feel uncomfortable. It could be due to a wet diaper or just a tight diaper or onesis. When your little one is crying a lot, the best thing is to do a diaper check and rule out a soiled diaper as the cause of the crying. Then you can look for other probable causes like sleepy or hungry. It is advisable to change the diaper frequently so that the dampness does not cause discomfort and rashes to the baby. Keeping the baby in a soiled diaper can lead to sever diaper rashes, especially after the age of 6 months when the baby has been started on solids. The stool of the baby on solids tends to be acidic and more capable of causing a rash.
- Wants to be Held: Babies begin to recognize their mothers since a very young age and they love seeing their mothers faces and being close to them. Many a times crying is a way of communicating that he wants to be close to you. The sense of security that the baby gets when he is close to his mother can be what he is crying for. In unknown surroundings the baby may get over stimulated and begin crying. Once you hold him close, you will see that he immediately becomes quite.
- Feeling Uncomfortable: If the child is feeling too hot or to cold they he may show his discomfort by crying. If you touch him and feel that he is warm, and the weather outside is hot too then you must change him into lighter clothes. In colder days, try to keep the baby covered in long onesis and pyjamas. This crying will be different from the others because it will be mild. Children cry out loud when they are hungry or sleepy and at other times, the cry will be consolable and less intense.
- Pain: Pain is a sensation that babies understand very well but at times as parents it gets difficult for use to pin point the cause as pain. The pain could be arising out of tight elastic of the clothes or a strand of hair wound around any part of the body that could be blocking the circulation. Some babies are extra sensitive to the tags of cloths, labels and designs of sequins. They will tend to pull at the clothes and indicate the discomfort they are feeling. Notice these simple signs and check what is bothering them and you are sure to make your baby happy.
- Teething: Teething can cause pain in the ears and itching in the gums when the tooth is about to break open from the gums. The child will be unnecessarily cranky and keep rubbing his ears. The fussiness will vary from one baby to the other. The most common sign that the baby is teething is a tendency to put everything in the mouth. The itching gums urge the child to bite and chew at everything that he can find around him. So you must be careful that the child doesn’t get hold of dirty things like slippers while crawling in the house. This is the commonest cause of baby fussy at night.
8. Over-Stimulation: When you take your baby out in the middle of crowds or a supermarket for the first time you may notice that an irritable and screaming baby. It is because some babies find these sights and sounds too overwhelming for them and cannot handle it. So babies cry. Other babies may take it well and enjoy themselves. If you notice that your little one prefers quite and known environments then take him to a quite spot and hold him close to make him feel comfortable.Another thing that can be tried for very small babies is swaddling. In the first month of life, babies find the outside world too much to handle and can get startled easily by loud sounds. Swaddling makes them feel secure and provides them the sense of comfort that they felt when in their mothers’ womb. It is also known to help them sleep better.
9. Feeling Unwell: If you normally happy baby is suddenly crying a lot especially in the middle of the night, then it could be because of an illness or baby colic. Many a times, ear ache or a tummy pain could be upsetting your little one. Make sure there are no associated symptoms like a cold that could give rise to ear pain. Check the stool, if there is diarrhea or constipation then that could be the cause of tummy ache. Colic in babies is most commonly seen between 3 and 9 months of age.
These are the commonest causes for babies to cry. However there may be other reasons or at times no reason at all. Once you’ve ruled out the hunger, sleep and diaper check all you can do is simply reassure the baby by holding him close. Playing soft music, swaddling, rocking and walking with the baby in your arms are some soothing baby tips that you could try.