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We all know how disturbing it is to hear a baby cry but there are really only nine main reasons why this happens, these are listed below.  The chart also gives some suggestions as to what can be done to ease the situation.

Hunger or Thirst                  Perhaps the baby has not had enough feed or he/she may just  want a drink, try cool boiled water.


Hot or Cold                           Although babies need to be kept warm, they can become  too hot.  Ensure their clothes and covers are suitable for the weather.


Wet/Dirty Nappy                   Always check to see if they need changing.


Tiredness                              Put baby to bed or rock to sleep in your arms.  This may be the only answer if they are over tired.


In need of comfort or reassurance Talk softly and make eye contact.


Colic Often babies have a restless period in the evening (often    between 6pm and 11pm - just when you want to sit down or you are trying to cook the evening meal). This can be due to colic which is sometimes caused by wind.  Burp baby by holding over shoulder and patting back lightly.

Or laying baby stomach down on your knee and stroking up the back towards the head.  Warm boiled water or gripe water can also help.  Colic nearly always disappears by the time baby is three months old.

I have received the following information and advice from a new mum which others may find of interest -

My son is five weeks old and has severe gas that started at two weeks ... it is tough for them, they ball up, kick, and scream -- sometimes inconsolably because of the pain. They may also do this at feeding time and arch or choke Spit up or vomit too, but not always) ... these symptoms can mean the gas is part of a larger problem... GER (severe acid reflux) This is very common in babies but has only recently been discovered, estimates say it can effect up to 50% of babies. It is caused by a missing flap at the bottom of the oesophagus which would normally keep acid from coming up as baby digests food. Good news moms, it will grow in usually within 13 weeks but can be up to 8 months -- in rare occasions to age two. Better news, symptoms can be controlled by medication to ease babies discomfort, so talk to your doctor. Also smithicone drops can relieve gas discomfort they are sold over the counter and are safe for infants (even newborns) because the medicine does is not absorbed by a babies system. Grip Water also used for gas or colic should not be used it is unregulated and some contain, charcoal -- which can interfere with the absorption of minerals and vitamins, alcohol, or baking soda, and all contain herbs know to be safe by the FDA, but they don't mention as the FDA advised me, they are known to be safe in adults only and not recommended for children. Mom's people will tell you fussiness is colic and there is nothing you can do but medical science has caught up and is uncovering the colic myth so talk with you doctors and do research, be your babies advocate and he will feel much better -- take it from me, last night my guy went down for 6 hours and has been sleeping all day ... something he had not done for week. Also helpful is "what to expect the first year" this book gives the latest info and is filled with advice, I look up my son's symptoms in the index and can read if it is normal or not, helps to advise when to call the doc or when you can ease things yourself and how.


Teething Rubbing baby's gums with a clean finger can soothe this problem.   Sometimes chewable foods, such as rusks can  help.

Suitable teething rings, which can be cooled in the fridge or a teething gel such as Bonjela may also ease some of the pain.


Boredom Even young babies need stimulation.  Playing games like peek-a-boo or "this little piggy" often helps.  All children     respond to attention.


Irritable   We all know this feeling. 

Try singing and rocking baby gently  in your arms or going out for a walk - good for both of you.    

If baby is still fractious try a gentle massage with baby lotion  (don't let your husband see though, he may get jealous).         

Background noise can sometimes help - vacuum cleaner,  radio, hair dryer etc.

If you are still awaiting baby's arrival you may find this guide useful and enlightening as it provides a glimpse into all you can anticipate with each passing week of your pregnancy,








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