A baby’s cry can be upsetting and frustrating. It is designed to get your attention and you may be worried that something is wrong with your baby.
Your baby may start to cry more frequently at about 2 weeks of age. The crying may get more frequent and last longer during the next few weeks, hitting a peak at about 6 to 8 weeks.
Every baby is different but, after about 8 weeks, babies start to cry less and less each week.
Some common reasons why your baby may be crying are:
There are lots of things that you can do to help your baby when they are crying:
Always start by checking baby’s basic needs:
Comforting your baby:
If you’ve checked all these needs, and your baby is still crying, try some simple calming techniques. Comfort methods can sometimes soothe the baby and the crying will stop:
These techniques may not always work. It may take a combination or more than one attempt to soothe your baby.
If your baby’s crying seems different in any way – such as being very high-pitched, or a whimper – or you think that there is something wrong with your baby, or the crying won’t stop, then speak to your GP, Midwife or Health Visitor. If you are worried that your baby is unwell, call NHS 111. Trust your instincts – you know your baby best!
Not every baby is easy to calm, but that doesn’t mean that you are doing anything wrong.
Don’t get angry with your baby or yourself. Instead, put your baby in a safe place and walk away so that you can calm yourself down.
It is normal for parents to get stressed, especially by crying. Put some time aside for yourself and take care of your own needs, as well as baby’s, to help you cope.
Remember – This phase will stop! Be an ICON for your baby and cope with their crying. The ICON website has useful information and videos to support you.
What not to do:
Handling a baby roughly will make them more upset. Shouting or getting angry with your baby will only make things worse.
Sometimes parents and people looking after babies get so angry and frustrated with a baby’s cry that they lose control.
They act on impulse and shake their baby.
After a few minutes, when you are calm, go back and check on the baby.