Caring for a crying baby can be a challenge, especially when you’re unsure of the best way to provide comfort. Babies cry to express their needs, whether it’s hunger, fatigue, discomfort, or illness. Understanding that crying is their primary mode of communication is essential. They might be signaling hunger, thirst, a wet diaper, exhaustion, or discomfort, possibly due to reflux or sensory issues. While crying is a natural part of babyhood, it can be emotionally taxing for parents. This blog offers quick and effective tips to soothe your baby and provide the comfort they need during those early weeks.
Tip #1: Soothe Your Baby with Baby Wearing
Moms everywhere agree that babies who are worn cry less than babies who aren’t. Babies love the closeness, the motion, and the interaction with you that wearing in a soft cloth carrier provides.
Tip #2: Use White Noise To Help Soothe Your Baby
The womb is a fairly loud place, and babies enjoy hearing a similar level of soothing noise outside the womb. You can buy a white noise machine or just use a household fan (my baby loved the stove vent fan), vacuum cleaner, running water, hair dryer, clothes dryer… or download a white noise app to your smartphone.
Tip #3: Soothing With Sucking
Babies love to suck. It ís a pleasure and comfort to them. Try the winning combo of swaddling (or keeping everything in midline)/shushing (white noise) and sucking (pacifier or breast) – most babies usually love this trio!
Tip #4: The Power of Essential Oils To Soothe
Try a drop of essential oil – my favorites are lavender, frankincense, Peace & Calming, and Roman Chamomile. Mix one drop with a teaspoon of carrier oil and rub it on the baby’s feet or back. And guess what, lavender can also be great for teething discomfort. If you don’t feel comfortable putting the essential oil on your baby’s skin, then put the drop on your neck and hold your baby close. Or try rubbing a drop of undiluted oil onto their pajamas.
Tip #5: Get Outside
Babies love the great outdoors. It provides sunshine, fresh air, a change of scenery, and many babies calm right down with a walk outside.
Tip #6: Co-Regulation To Soothe Your Baby
Babies can sense a parent’s stress. It’s important to take a few deep breaths yourself and exude a quiet, calm confidence. You’re the leader of the pack and baby needs to sense that you’re comfortable being in charge. Some of my favorite ways to calm down are humming, singing, and of course, using my oils (Peace & Calming is my FAVORITE oil of all time, and I use it daily!).
Tip #7: Breastfeed on Demand
Babies nurse for many reasons other than hunger, and they are all legitimate. It is perfectly ok for a young baby to use mom as a pacifier. Frequent nursing ensures a hearty milk supply and floods baby’s – AND mom’s. Nursing helps both mom and baby’s body feel good and also release the bonding and love hormones, specifically oxytocin (which is also the hormone that helps combat cortisol, the stress hormone).
Tip #8: Warm Bath
Some babies love their bath. A warm bath, especially with a drop of lavender essential oil added, is just the ticket to distract the baby from her fussing, tire her out and ready her for la-la land.
Tip #9: Cuddles or Choruses (a.k.a Humming or Singing)
Babies need a lot of touch. Try holding the baby and rocking him or her, or have Dad cuddle the baby and sing. Babies love the deeper tone and vibration of Dad’s voice.
Tip #10: Sound Therapy To Soothe The Soul
I love using my Tibetan singing bowl with fussy babies, and this is one of my ‘must-have’ pieces of equipment when I run my in-person (or virtual) Babies @ Play mom & baby classes.
These tips may be helpful but it is important for us mamas to keep in mind that our baby needs to know that we are present.
That’s their ultimate comfort.
I hope these tips will be helpful to you and your little ones. There will be times that it will be hard for us to understand how they communicate but trust your mama instincts always. Let them feel that you are there for them. We will get through this!
If you need additional support on your mama journey, you can join a group of other Mamas just like you in my free group Sleep Deprived Mama’s Holistic + Heart Centered Support. Let’s do this together!