Simple Tricks to Comfort Your Baby

There is nothing worse than listening to the sound of your baby crying and feeling helpless to soothe him. Sometimes figuring out what exactly a newborn wants can be a challenge. If you have ruled out hunger and a dirty diaper as sources of the problem, then in all likelihood your baby just needs to be comforted. Fortunately there are some easy tricks you can use to comfort your baby.

Tone Down the Environment

A baby can become over-stimulated easily. Remember, he is used to the peace of the womb; noise, light and activity can all overwhelm him very quickly. Try turning off the TV, dimming the lights, and keeping other people out of the room while you try to calm your baby.

Swaddling

Used to the confines of the womb, newborns find it very comforting to be tightly wrapped in a blanket. It offers both warmth and a feeling of security, and can both calm your baby as well as help him to sleep better. Swaddling can be a bit tricky to learn at first; it’s a good idea to watch the nurses at the hospital when your baby is born to pick up their tricks, as they are professionals. If you weren’t quite in the state of mind to pick up such details during your hospital stay, you can still learn with a little practice. However, if you find it difficult or frustrating, you can pick up one of the various blankets designed to make swaddling easier.

White Noise

Many new mothers find it odd that their baby doesn’t seem at all disturbed by the sound of the vacuum. The sound made by a vacuum is white noise, and babies find this monotonous type of sound very soothing. The instinct to make a “Shhhhh” sound to soothe baby is a good one; though you may not realize it, you are creating white noise. There are a number of white noise machines on the market that you can purchase for the nursery; however, a simple fan will do the same job and using a fan in baby’s room was recently linked with a significant reduction of the risk of SIDS.

Gentle Motion

The image of a mother gently rocking her baby is well-known for a good reason. Gentle motion such as rocking and vibration are also soothing to newborns. The soft swaying may remind them of the motion inside the womb. An infant swing or rocking bassinet are also good options to provide the same comforting motion, but you may find it more effective if you hold baby and rock her yourself. There is nothing quite like being held in mom’s arms while gently rocking to calm an upset baby quickly.

When Nothing Seems to Work

If you have tried every trick in the book and your baby still won’t be comforted, there might be something else going on. You may have a colicky baby, which is not a dangerous condition although quite difficult for the new mom and dad to deal with. Or it could be that something else is bothering your baby, such as reflux. If your baby is crying for more than 3 hours at a time and you can’t seem to comfort her, or starts crying during feedings and seems to be in pain, it’s time to call your pediatrician. Follow your instincts; if you feel your baby’s crying is not normal, put a call into the doctor’s office.

All babies cry; it’s their main method of communication. Fortunately, most reasons for crying can be solved by ruling out obvious culprits and using these simple tricks to make baby feel safe, secure, and loved.

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