Soothing Methods

Created: April 16, 2003. - Reviewed: January 23, 2016.

You have attended to your baby’s needs and still she cries.  When a baby cries the reason isn't always obvious, making it difficult to know what to do.  Check out our top tips for calming fussy and crying babies.

Soothing Methods
Rowena Bennett

Rowena Bennett

  • Registered Nurse
  • Registered Midwife
  • Child Health Nurse
  • Mental Health Nurse
  • IBCLC

Rowena over 20 years experience assisting parents to resolve well baby care problems.

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Soothing methods

 

When your baby continues to cry despite your best efforts to calm her, and you have already ruled out all obvious reasons for a crying baby, then in a quiet room with low lighting try...

 

  • Swaddling her.
  • Offering her a pacifier.
  • Rocking her in your arms, a pram or cradle.
  • Carrying her in a sling.
  • Lying her face down along your forearm with her head near your elbow and her arms hanging down either side of your arm. Your hand (of the arm she's lying on) supporting her diaper area. Once you feel you have a safe and secure hold of her, firmly (but gently) pat her diaper area with your free hand in a slow rhythmical pattern... Or hold her pacifier in place as you walk and sway at the same time.
  • Laying her on her tummy across your knees or on a bed and rub her back or pat her diaper area.
  • Offering her 1 oz of cooled boiled water.
  • A warm bath.
  • A relaxation massage.
  • Patting her as you lie with her on a bed.
  • Using white noise (from fan, vacuum cleaner, or hair dryer) to block out stimulation from other noises. Or try saying shush, shush, shush....

 

There will be times when nothing you do will calm her. If you are feeling tense or if you feel you can no longer cope.  Place her in her crib and give yourself a break.  Talk to someone.  If necessary call a family member or a friend and ask them to come over to provide support.

 

NEVER SHAKE YOUR BABY!!!  This can cause permanent brain damage or death.

 

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