8 GUARANTEED WAYS TO CALM A CRYING NEWBORN BABY
Anyone else wonder if it was this easy for every parent to leave the hospital with a baby? Surely there’s a screening process, a written test, an on the job test + they should really send at least one (maybe two) nurses home with you for at least one (maybe two) weeks until you get the hang of it, right?
I know every new parent feels this way when a baby is handed over to them + they are sent on their merry way to fend for themselves. They trust *me* to take care of this tiny human?!?
It was extremely overwhelming when I brought my first baby home. There was so much that I wasn’t prepared for. Why is she peeing every dang time I change her diaper? Why is her poop leaking out onto every outfit I put on her? Why does she sleep all day like an angel + cry at night when I try to set her down? Why does she appear to be hungry all. the. time.?!?! And not just hungry, HANGRY. Why is she spitting up? Does she have gas? Is she crying in pain? Why did her eyes just roll in the back of her head? Should I take her to the hospital? IS SHE DYING?
These are real thoughts that went through my head. Along with other ones such as, I’ll never sleep again, my boobs are food, so much for being cool, my vagina will never be the same.
Don’t get me wrong, I loved being a mom + I was beyond thrilled to call that little girl mine. But man, it is EXHAUSTING.
I found myself scouring the internet looking for any tips, tricks + miracle hacks that other moms suggested. I tried some, laughed at some, shook my head at some + swore by some that worked for me. I also started to figure out my own hacks that helped my baby. Every single baby is different, so what worked for one mom might not work for another. I have three kids and all three of them were different as babies and had different preferences. There are some things that work for almost every baby though. I still remember those first weeks at home with my baby as a new mom + I cringe at the thought of how clueless I was.
So I want to share with other moms some things that I WISH someone would’ve told me before I had my first baby. I hope these will help you navigate life as a new mommy!
#1. Newborns are used to being packed tightly in your belly with little room to move. That’s why the nurses in the hospital always swaddle them so tightly. It helps simulate the womb. So many people stop swaddling once they get home. Why!?! There’s really no excuse now with all the swaddle blankets + sleep sacks out there now! You don’t even have to do the work–the blanket does it for you! It is so important to hold your baby on your chest, close to you, to help them feel more secure + start to bond with you. There is no truth at all to the saying, “You’re going to spoil that baby by holding it all the time!” Newborns don’t remember what happened an hour ago. They’re not going to remember that yesterday you held them more than today. Hold that baby tight. Bond with them. Get all the snuggles you can in because they won’t be this little for long.
#2. Newborns are also used to having a muffled, constant sound always going while in the womb (aka white noise, similar to a vacuum cleaner, hairdryer, etc.). White noise is without a doubt the most important thing you can have as a parent to a newborn. It helps them sleep, calms them down, drowns out other noises, etc. When I discovered white noise as a first time parent, it was a game changer. Anytime she would cry, I would turn on the app on my phone + play white noise + she would instantly calm down. You’re going to want to buy a sound machine to play when for naptime + bedtime. This also helps establish the time they’re supposed to be asleep as opposed to being awake. They’ll start to hear that noise as a cue that it is time to go to sleep.
#3. Car rides are your friend (assuming your baby doesn’t scream bloody murder every time). Cars put babies to sleep. It’s science. Go for a ride. Have nowhere to go? Who cares. Your baby is screaming + you’re pulling your hair out: go. for. the ride. Even if they are screaming at first, odds are they will fall asleep + stay asleep as long as you keep driving. You get a moment’s peace + they get some rest!
#4. Newborns like movement. Again, they have been in your belly, moving around with you. They will feel most at home when you move them. Sometimes it’s as simple as bouncing them on your lap or patting them on the booty. Other times, you have to get up + walk around with them. My first two definitely required me to get up + walk around with them to get them calmed down. It might seem like an inconvenience at the time, but it’s worth it!
#5. Newborns are pretty much always going to seem hungry!! So even if they are sucking on their hands two seconds after they ate, it doesn’t necessarily mean they are ready to eat again. With my first two, that’s what i thought + it was exhausting just feeding them all the time. Then I finally figured out with my third that they just love that comfort of sucking. I gave my third a pacifier + she was golden. Now I know they say not to give it to a newborn if they’re not latching properly, but if they are + have no problems eating, there is nothing wrong with giving them a paci for comfort.
#6. Newborns sometimes cry because they need to be changed. Some of them don’t like being wet or dirty. Check their diaper. They might just need a change + they’ll be all good after that.
#7. Sometimes newborns need to be burped because they’re a little gassy. If they’re not content laying down, try sitting them up + patting them on the back to see if they need to burp. If they are burping + passing gas a lot, you might try some Gripe water. It’s supposed to help relieve gas in newborns + they like taking it.
#8. Sometimes they might cry because they are just tired + need to sleep. In this case, I would recommend doing any of the above to calm them down. If they’re calm, they’ll most likely fall asleep. Try the white noise, walking around with them, giving them the paci, swaddling them, or bouncing them to get them to sleep.
What are some other ways you figured out calmed your newborn down? Let me know in the comments or email me! + let’s be friends! Life is so much better when we do it with others! Sign up for my email list below!
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*I am not a medical professional. These are solely my opinions from my own experiences.*