The following tips may help you care for
your child and lessen the amount he or she cries.
Recognize and respond to your child's
cry and other signals (whimpering, wiggling, and facial expressions). Do not
worry about spoiling your child. Young children cry for a reason and are not
trying to manipulate parents or caregivers. It is harder to find the cause of
crying and takes longer to soothe your child when he or she has been crying for
a long time. Babies younger than 6 months use crying as their way to
communicate. As a young child learns other ways to communicate, he or she may
use crying for attention. If you think your child's crying is related to
behavior problems, many parenting books and classes offer suggestions for
behavior modification in these situations.
Keep a regular routine
for your child's meals, naps, and play times. This will prevent your child from
overtired or overstimulated.
child in your arms or in a soft pouch infant carrier so your child is close to
your chest. Studies have shown that young children carried for about 3 hours
each day cry much less than those who are carried less. Being carried gives
your child the pleasure of physical closeness and may help you be more in tune
with his or her needs.
If you breast-feed your child, watch how your own
diet affects your child's behavior. For example, does your child have gas or
cry more after you have eaten certain foods? The medicines you take can pass in
your breast milk to your child and affect him or her. If you smoke cigarettes
or chew tobacco, the nicotine can pass through your breast milk and may make
your child fussy or irritable.
Make sure your child is getting
enough to eat but is not overfed. Make sure the nipple
opening of the bottle is not too large or too small.
If your baby gulps during bottle feedings,
the nipple hole may be too large, causing your baby to swallow air when
If your baby struggles with the bottle during feedings,
the nipple hole may be too small, causing air to be swallowed when sucking.
When a baby struggles for nourishment, he or she may become frustrated and may
even stop eating before being satisfied.
Burp your child
often during feedings. Adding solid foods to your baby's diet at a young age
(unless you have been told to do so by your doctor) may cause problems. Solid
foods are harder for a young child to digest and may cause a
food intolerance. This might make you think your baby
food allergy when he or she does not. You may be able
to avoid some food intolerances if you wait to add solid foods until your baby
is 6 months old.
Make sure your child's sucking
needs are satisfied. Sucking can help a child relieve stress without crying.
Some young children need to suck as much as 2 hours a day. If feedings are not
enough to satisfy sucking, use a
If you think the formula may be
the problem, talk to your child's doctor before changing formulas or brands of