A baby's cry is often a source of concern for young parents. In the vast majority of cases, however, this is a completely normal manifestation. Do you have trouble understanding your baby's crying spells yourself? Do you think your child is crying abnormally? Our experts give you several keys to understand why your baby is crying and help you deal with this situation.
Why is baby crying?
As they cannot yet speak, crying is one of the child's only means of expression. This primitive means of expression makes it possible to express that he is hungry, badly or bored. Parents must therefore strive to understand crying, interpret it and respond to it. It is therefore a form of communication between baby and parents.
A normal phenomenon to put into perspective
Most parents have already felt helpless in the face of their little one's repeated crying fits. However, although the incessant crying of a baby may seem disturbing, it should be remembered that this phenomenon is normal in the vast majority of cases: until the acquisition of language, crying is the only way for the child to of expression at his disposal (it is estimated that less than 5% of infant crying has a medical origin).
A crying baby is therefore a child who seeks above all to communicate! And this can last several months without this meaning that the infant suffers from any pathology - the crying is more frequent and more intense during the first 3 months of the child's life, with a peak around 6/8 weeks (between 2 and 3 hours of crying per day), then decrease until the 12th week. However, don't worry if your baby does not respect this "crying curve" highlighted in many studies: very many babies cry very frequently during their first year or even their second. Pediatricians also consider crying to be part of the normal development of a child (a child who does not cry at all may seem much more worrying to them than a child who cries a lot). To find out more about baby awakening, click here.
Causes of baby crying
While baby crying is a normal phenomenon, it doesn't mean that your child always tries to cry for no reason. Very often, her crying spells are a way to mean something to you.
- Baby is hungry
Most infants start crying when they feel hungry or thirsty. Crying can occur immediately after the meal (as he has not eaten enough, baby cries just after the bottle) or after a long period without eating (which corresponds to 2 or 3 hours for babies). During the first months of life, hunger is relatively easy to detect in children: still having the reflex of the cardinal points, baby will turn his head and start suckling if you caress or stimulate his mouth.
- Baby has a digestive problem
In many cases, food is the cause of infant crying. A poorly adapted diet will indeed cause small digestive problems (bloating, gas, colic, irritation, etc.) in young children. Babybio is now developing recipes specifically to meet the needs and digestive capacity of infants. Our formulas and our infant milks are all made with delicious products from organic farming. Also, avoid offering your baby overly large meals before sleeping, and laying him down immediately after eating to avoid regurgitation. Find several tips online to limit the problems of digestive discomfort in infants.
- Baby is sleepy
A sleep deprived child is usually prone to crying. To find out if this is the case with your little one, put him to bed in his room or in a calm environment that is familiar to him as soon as he seems to be crying from fatigue. He will then sleep very quickly if he is sleepy.
- Baby wants to be changed
A child with a dirty diaper may start crying to show his discomfort to his parents. To make changing babies easier, Babybio offers you a range of certified organic products, including a liniment with an original formula and washable “Carré Doudou” wipes in organic cotton. As a reminder, a child needs to be changed 6 to 10 times a day during the first months of life – find here several tips for changing babies.
- Baby is poorly positioned
An infant who has been placed on a bed or swing in an awkward position may also start crying. Consider this if you're struggling to find the cause of baby crying.
- Baby is in pain somewhere or has a fever
Your child may also cry in case of pain or fever. Pain can be caused by several causes – digestive discomfort, headache, teething… To find the reasons for this pain, it is recommended to seek advice from your pediatrician. Remember, however, that infant crying is not often due to a medical problem – and that, very often, digestive discomfort is simply caused by an ill-adapted diet or a small problem of stomach maturation which will resolve itself quickly when of the child's growth. Pain in the abdomen can also be caused by an unsuitable bottle. Discover our advice for choosing a bottle that corresponds to your child's age and sucking abilities.
- Baby just needs hugs
An infant may also cry to be picked up by mom or dad. Beware of received ideas. Until the child is 3 years old, it is not a question of whims - your little one is then unable to simulate -, but simply of the need to feel the affection of his parents and to seek their comfort. This also explains why a baby may start crying as soon as you put it down.
And the famous “infant colic”?
Some babies (about 25% of infants would be affected) are subject to recurrent crying attacks at the end of the day or at nightfall. During this episode, the child seems inconsolable – some health professionals speak of inconsolable infant crying. These crying attacks, which have often been called "infant colic", are still poorly understood: no medical cause has been clearly identified to date. Experts sometimes believe that these cries are linked to the immaturity of the baby's digestive system or an imbalance in the intestinal flora, some also perceive them as a simple way to evacuate the tensions accumulated during the day. If your child suffers from infant colic, do not hesitate to test different infant milks, taking care to discuss this with your pediatrician beforehand.
If your child goes through this phase (a child is considered prone to infant colic when he cries for more than 3 hours a day continuously for at least 3 days out of 7),
Why does baby cry in his sleep?
Does your child wake you up several times a night crying? Until the fourth/sixth month of the child, this is part of the normal development of an infant: baby does not yet know how to distinguish day from night. After this age, your child may continue to cry at night because he is hungry or needs reassurance.
Good to know: If several reasons can be at the origin of infant crying, it is important to remember that some crying cannot always be explained: many pediatricians consider that these are often psychosomatic manifestations used by the child. child to communicate, and therefore it is not always necessary to put intentionality in these tears.
How to calm a crying baby?
If some crying spells seem inconsolable, it is fortunately possible to manage to soothe your child when he cries. When you manage to precisely identify the cause of the crying (hunger, cold, poor posture, etc.), you can act quickly and put an end to the problem in a concrete way (give the child something to eat, for example, add a layer of clothing or changing it, for example).
However, it is also possible to calm your little one when no cause seems identifiable. Several methods can work depending on the child. For example, you can take baby in your arms, rock him and talk to him in a soft voice, addressing him reassuring little words. A trick is then often very effective: walk gently by making small rocking movements (using a baby carrier can also work very well).
If baby is in his bed, you can also touch his feet, caress his cheek, talk to him in a low voice and massage his little belly - in case of gas and bloating, massaging the abdomen can do a lot for him. good. Some parents have also worked miracles by cradling their little one with a car trip, a stroll in a stroller or by giving him a bath. The most important thing is to succeed in reassuring your child and providing him with a reassuring presence – it is also essential that the parents take turns in order not to give in to stress (which would only make the child's discomfort worse ).
Finally, offering your baby quality food, adapted to his age and needs, can also allow you to relieve his crying in the long term. Babybio has used all its know-how to develop tasty recipes capable of providing babies with everything they need to grow and develop in accordance with regulations.
Should we let baby cry?
Several years ago, it could sometimes be recommended to let a baby cry (at night, in particular) when we had already met his primary needs (eating, drinking, changing...). This method is no longer recommended by pediatricians and the medical profession (at least until the first year of the child). On the contrary, early childhood professionals today insist on the importance of meeting the needs of the child and succeeding in reassuring him when he cries. Only in this way will he be able to establish a relationship of trust with his parents and will feel completely safe.