Nothing really prepares you for the sound of your own baby crying. Especially at 3am! If you are struggling to settle your bub, here are some things that really work to calm a screaming baby.
So you’ve checked their nappy, offered a feed and made sure they aren’t too hot or cold, but your bub is still screaming. It’s a horrible feeling. Try these tips to help calm the crying.
5 things that can calm a screaming baby
1. Get outdoors
There is something about getting into the fresh air that seems to calm a screaming baby. Maybe it’s the change in scenery or the new sounds and smells.
Even in the middle of the night taking a break outdoors can really reset things. Plus, the crying never seems quite as loud in the open!
2. Try a bath
Most babies love water and a bath can really settle a crying baby. It can also be a great sleep cue if you incorporate it into your night-time routine.
Make sure you have clothes and a towel ready to go when they get out, plus make the room nice and warm. No one likes to get out of a warm bath into a freezing cold room.
3. White noise
White noise is basically the sound you hear when a radio station is off-station. It’s like a wooshing sound and many babies find it very settling. The trick is to make it louder than babies screams, at least until they have calmed!
You can buy white-noise makers such as the baby susher or download white noise apps. Make sure you have your phone on airplane mode if you are using an app though. If you’re at home the sound of a hairdryer can work wonders too.
4. Use a baby carrier
Being close to mum (or dad) in a carrier is a great way to settle a crying baby. It’s particularly effective if bub is overtired or suffers from reflux. Strap bub in and get outdoors for a walk. The fresh air and motion will also help to settle them.
Check out our list of great baby carriers to find one that works for you.
5. Call in reinforcements
Sometimes a change of arms is helpful in settling a screaming baby. If you’ve been trying to settle bub for a while and are feeling frazzled and frustrated, try calling in some backup. Hand bub over to your partner, a friend or grandparent if you can.
If you don’t have anyone around that you can pass baby over to and you are feeling stressed, pop your baby in their cot or another safe space for a few minutes and go outside for some fresh air. Listening to a screaming baby is stressful and it is okay to take a break if you feel like you are losing your calm.
Remember – if in doubt, check it out
If your baby is inconsolable or they seem otherwise unwell, call health direct or speak to your GP. Sometimes there can be a medical reason that your baby is crying more than usual and it is always worth getting things checked.
For some more reassurance read this post from a midwife that explains that crying is quite normal.
Read Healthy Mummy founder Rhian’s story about how she rocked both her babies for 12 months.
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