Times have changed but the needs of a baby remain the same. Full tummy, dry bum, love and warmth.
Yet pleasing an infant can seem like an impossible task at times, especially at 1.00am when you have tried everything. The truth is these little bundles really only require a few things and once you have these things under control you will be closer to returning peace in your home.
Newborns try to communicate their needs to us but all we hear is ‘Wah Wah Wah’..
Eventually we can pick up on the slight variations in their cries. The tired cry, the hungry cry, the dirty bum cry, the sore tummy cry and the “I need a hug” cry. Sometimes you will go through all of these, fix everything and the little bundle is still crying. Baby has pooped in the mean time.
Sounds simple really … if only it was. Any one of these problems can be unresolved and we will never know what it is.
There are a few tricks and habits that may help calm a crying baby and get the whole household into better habits..
1. Watch your baby
When a baby is getting tired, it will start to grizzle and not want to engage with you. This may be a good time to try to get them off to sleep.
2. Have a Night Routine
Try to have different habits for day and night. Make day feeds, baths and interaction more energetic. Nights feeds should be calmer. Speak soothingly to the baby and maybe incorporate a light massage to the nappy change. A combination of these as well as dimming the lights may make all the difference to you and the baby. It will set you up for a more relaxed evening.
One of the best tips that I ever received was to have background noise in the nursery always. Have your iPod or a radio on just enough to absorb any noises that happen in the rest of the house. Your baby has been travelling around in your tummy with you for months and it is not very quiet in there even at night. In the evenings you can put on something more relaxing and start conditioning your baby for sleep.
Again, your baby has been travelling around with you and is used to sleeping with some movement. A lot of babies are unsettled by the stillness of a cot and find is hard at first. This is why they love to be rocked in your arms and enjoy those absurd jaunts in the car in the middle of the night. Eventually they will get used to a stationary place to sleep but in the meantime do what works for you and your family.
A newborn has been tucked up safely in a tight space for a while by the time it is born and some can struggle with their new freedom. So wrapping them up firmly and placing them on their back to sleep can be a huge comfort. As soon as they are rolling onto their side this practice should be abandoned.