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How To Deal With a Crying Baby
By Rose Smith

We are bombarded by faces of smiling, happy babies through newspapers, TV advertisements, and websites selling baby products. But the reality of it is... babies cry... and they can cry a lot! It's a frequent occurrence during the first few months of a newborn's life. They don't have any other way of communicating to us that something is wrong. Unfortunately, it can often bring a parent to their wits end because you often don't know what to do! It takes time to get to know this new little person in your life and to begin interpreting their signals. Until then, all you can do is be patient and try different things to figure out what may be wrong.

Here are some reasons and solutions to deal with a crying baby:

* Usually a baby will cry because he or she is hungry. Try feeding your child. If you know this isn't the case (as they've just eaten a short time ago), keep going down the list to figure out what else might be causing their distress.

* Check their diaper to see if it needs to be changed. Really, would you like to be stuck in a cold, clammy diaper that's probably irritating your skin?

* The baby may be too hot or too cold. Although you may be comfortable, your baby may not be. Try bundling your child up if they're not wearing much or removing some clothing, especially if it's a hot day out or the home is kept very warm. Newborns also like to be wrapped up like in a cocoon. Try bundling your baby in a receiving blanket. It makes them feel more secure.

* Your child may have a problem with gas that is distending his or her tummy, especially after eating. Try burping them and keeping them in an upright position, rather than laying down.

* Your baby may be overtired or possibly bored. He or she may want companionship. Contrary to popular belief, holding your baby often will not spoil him or her. Everyone needs companionship. To this little tyke, the world is an alien place full of loud noises and too much activity. They need to be held and comforted to feel secure.

Trying out the above solutions will often bring the crying to an end. Sometimes however, the problem is beyond the simple solutions above. Your child may have colic or may be edgy because they haven't adjusted to a sleeping pattern yet. In these cases, hold your baby either across your lap or up on your shoulder and rub their back or their stomach (if you suspect it might be colic) in a circular motion. This often lulls them down to a calmer state.

A newborn child also likes to suck; it's a comforting feeling to him or her. Try offering a pacifier. Rocking is also a great way to soothe a crying child.

Crying is a natural process for a young child as a way to communicate with us as parents. Allowing a baby to cry does not "strengthen their lungs" or is in any way healthy for them. If you don't respond to your baby's crying right away, it actually teaches them that nobody cares and increases feelings of insecurity, and increases your frustration level. Why put both of yourselves through that? The sooner you respond to your baby's crying, the sooner he or she will stop -- a wonderful feeling for both of you.

Rose Smith is the author and publisher of Baby-Care-4u.com. an online shopping and information resource for essential baby care products.

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