Soothing Your Crying Baby!

By: Tara Wood, M.A.

One of the hardest things about being a parent of a newborn is dealing with a crying baby. As parents, the last thing we want to hear is our baby crying. But one of the amazing aspects about how God created these little ones is that He gave them the ability to communicate with us when they need something. The most common reasons for why a baby cries are: they're hungry, they need changing or to be burped, they feel over stimulated, they' re bored (need some stimulation), they desire a change in stimulation (to be held a different way, play with a new toy, sit up, lie down, etc.) or they need some good-old bonding time with caretaker (hold me, soothe me, let me know you're near).

Whenever your baby cries (and she will), first look into one of the above reasons for her distress. She may just be trying to communicate with you that she has a need that needs to be met. But also keep in mind that babies cry between 1-4 hours a day and will cry the most between 6 and 8 weeks. Babies often cry for no reason at all. Nervous systems are developing, lungs are developing, stress and energy need to be released.sometimes babies just cry.

When your baby cries, the number one rule is STAY CALM. Sometimes easier said than done, especially when it's two in the morning and you're sick with exhaustion. But babies feed off our energy level. If your stress level is rising, your baby will pick up on that, sense something must be wrong and likely increase their own stress level. Take deep breaths. Hold baby close and try to match your breathing to his. Begin counting out loud in a slow and low voice. Force yourself to talk softly to your baby. Talk about your day, where you would like to travel to someday and what you'd do there.anything. In many cases, you'll be amazed at how slowing down and calming yourself down will also calm down your little one. Whatever strategy you choose for calming yourself down, keep reminding yourself that it's OK that your baby is crying. Crying is part of how God created infants. All infants cry. Repeating this self-talk to yourself helps you remember that you are not alone. There are parents all over the world at this very moment dealing with their own crying babies.

Now that you are calm, here are 5 Strategies for soothing your baby if all else fails:

With any of these strategies, give them a chance to take effect before giving up on it. While one of these is sure to soothe a crying baby most of the time, don't necessarily expect instant results. It may take a few minutes for the baby to realize that she likes what she's experiencing.

God also provided us parents with some good intuition. If you sense something is really wrong with your baby, you could be right. Don't hesitate to call your healthcare provider if you feel your baby is inconsolable due to something serious such as an illness or injury.

Tara Wood, MA is the director of Family Nurturing for Xylem Family Resource, a nonprofit organization serving expecting couples and families within the Christian community. She supports and educates parents in skills that are developmentally appropriate for their children, including Baby & Me classes, baby sign language, and parenting workshops and consultations. For more information, visit or e-mail

Article Comments: Leave Comment

Other Articles In: Babies