Why is the newborn crying?

Why is the newborn crying?

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Newborn and small babies cry mainly from hunger. Did you hear that sentence too? It turns out that it is the cause of many problems. Among other things, a learned reaction to give a breast or a bottle to him whenever a small child shows dissatisfaction. Completely forgetting that there can be many more reasons for crying. It is not always hunger. Why is the newborn crying?

Why is the newborn crying?

Already a few to several hours after delivery, a newly baked mother can distinguish her baby's crying from the whimping of other newborns. He also learns very quickly how to guess the cause of a baby's crying, assessing it on the basis of facial expressions, body movements, behavior of the newborn and the youngest infant, as well as taking into account the last time of feeding or changing. You can learn a lot by analyzing the way a child cries.

However, if you are a mother of a newborn or younger infant and you often have doubts about why the baby is crying, do not worry. The reason for crying cannot always be easily identified. The following descriptions can help you with this.

Crying in pain

A newborn baby doesn't cry just from hunger. It can be a cry of pain. Then it resembles short high shouts, interrupted by apnea. A baby crying with pain is hard to comfort, the baby remains restless on his arms, his torso is tight, his legs and arms are curled up, and the face looks tired.

How to know what hurts a newborn baby? Unfortunately, this is not easy. For obvious reasons, a toddler will not say that he is suffering from something. You have to play detective and watch the child carefully ...

A newborn baby may cry because of the discomfort caused by burning his butt (see if relief comes from taking the diaper and venting the butt), throat infection, runny nose (the baby may suck restlessly because of stuffy nose and sore throat). Colic may also be the cause.

Cry from fatigue

Crying from fatigue begins with a gentle whimper, whining, after a while, if the child does not know peace and is not separated from excessive stimuli, he turns into a terrifying scream.

The toddler calms down after hugging, putting him to bed, taking a walk or other procedures that allow him to fall asleep.

Cry of hunger

The newborn gives unambiguous signals that indicate that he is crying because of hunger. The older he is, the weaker these symptoms may be. Most often it is: moving the head from side to side in search of the breast or bottle, sucking surrounding objects. The newborn is crying intermittently, as if waiting for the reactions of the environment. He is quite persistent and tenacious, but he does not cry in such high tones as when crying in pain.

Whether it was crying from hunger is easy to know by watching a child who gets milk. If he was hungry, he could suck greedily, sometimes slower but steadily, focused on the breast or bottle. Only when it satisfies its first hunger can it slow down and take breaks. A completely different reaction will be if the child is not crying from hunger. Then he sucks the breast for a moment, then breaks off and starts whining again.

Crying out of boredom

The child looks around, cries briefly, interrupting, looking for a way to meet his own need for interaction. His eyes are open, but without expression, he is quiet when he hears an interesting sound. It clearly calms down when it is taken on your hands, it stops when you look at it and turn your attention to it.

He raises his legs, puts fists in his mouth, but this solution does not satisfy him. He urges his parent to come and offer him something interesting to play with. Interestingly, high need babies cry mainly from boredom. It is they who receive insufficient stimulation as much as lack of food. This relationship is highlighted by lactation advisor Dr. Pamela Douglas.

And although many parents avoid stimulating the youngest babies up to 4 months old, it turns out that this is not always effective. Because the most demanding children do not appreciate peace, they protest against lack of stimulation. For them - a lot has to happen so that their development needs are met. Because:

  • wear baby
  • swing,
  • talk to him, let me see your face,
  • go for walks,
  • do not be afraid of contacts with other people, family visits or playing with older siblings or cousins.


Thomas B. Brazelton, an American pediatrician, also points to another reason for crying, which is often confused with colic. It is a crying that relaxes the emotions that the child experienced during the day. The child cries in the evening, his whining can be cyclical. The child calms down a bit while carrying it, rocking, but soon he starts crying again. The toddler frowns a little but relaxes immediately. Parental treatments to calm the child are effective for a while. The toddler just calms down when he falls asleep.

Read - how to react to crying babies


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