• Shruti GOCHHWAL

13 Ways to Handle a Fussy Newborn

Handling a baby for the initial few months will be a challenging and tiresome job for the mother. The only mode of communication for a newborn is crying. But sometimes we will be clueless about why a baby cries. Here are a few reasons for a baby’s fussiness and we have also discussed some 13 ways on how to soothe a fussy newborn.

A Fussy Newborn

It is completely normal for a newborn to cry and fuss. Fussiness is a normal part of infancy. We must listen to our baby’s cry, find out the reason, and respond appropriately. It is estimated that standard infant fussiness may last for an average of 2 to 4 hours per day. As a newborn is approaching an entirely new world, the fussiness may start at 2 to 3 weeks, may peak at six weeks, and diminish for 3 to 4 months.

Fussiness tends to occur more commonly in the evening, especially right before your little one is going to have long stretches of sleep.

Some Reasons for Your Baby’s Cry

Some of the more common causes of fussiness in babies are hunger, oversupply syndrome, or providing too much milk, low milk supply, diaper rash, thrush, food sensitivities, and nipple confusion. Some of the other reasons for fussiness include fatigue, overtiredness, overstimulation, loneliness, and discomfort. When babies are going through growth spurts, they make fussy.

  1. Always keep track of their feeding time. Do not follow a strict schedule. When your child shows signs of hunger, feed her.

  2. Some babies may cry if they are uncomfortable with hot or cold weather. In such instances, dress them appropriately.

  3. Always change the diaper. Sometimes wet or soiled diapers may irritate them.

  4. When your baby is sick or has gastro esophageal reflux (GER), she may cry. Always notice the health issues and act accordingly.

13 Ways to Soothe a Fussy Newborn

Here are a few strategies you can try to calm your fussy newborn. Some may work for a few days. You have to keep discovering new ways as per your little one’s needs. Have patience.

  1. Touch

  2. Sounds

  3. Rocking

  4. Swaddling

  5. Burping

  6. Pacifier

  7. Dress

  8. Change in diet

  9. Do not overfeed

  10. Massaging

  11. Sleep

  12. Go outside

  13. Ask help

Touch

Mother soothing her baby

Mother soothing her baby, Credits: pexels


Some comforting touch like massages, bouncing; placing baby across your lap, giving a back rub, singing, or speaking softly can help to calm down your baby. Make eye contact and talk with her. Show her colored toys and objects.

Sounds

Babies are always familiar with sounds when they are inside the womb. It is believed that babies calm down to rhythmic whooshing sounds. You can turn on some soothing sounds like “white noise” (humming sound of a fan, vacuum cleaner, and dishwasher) or the recording of a heartbeat.

Rocking

You can gently do rocking motions to soothe her. This also gives a feel they are in the womb. If you are tired, you can use a rocking chair. Other options include putting your baby in a motorized baby swing, vibrating bouncy seat, or an automatic cradle.

Swaddling

Swaddling with a thin blanket may soothe her and provide her a feeling of comfort and secureness. It gives feel that they are in the mother’s womb.

Burping

Fussy newborn

Mother burping her baby, Credits: pexels


It is always a good practice to gently burp after every feed. This will help her in digestion and avoid crying due to uneasiness in the stomach.

Pacifier

Babies always like sucking. You can offer a pacifier to calm them. This nonnutritive sucking helps calm their nerves.

Dress

Always place your baby in a room that is neither too cold nor too hot. If they are uncomfortable with their dress, change it.

Change in Diet

Some babies may cry if they are sensitive to any kind of food. If you are breastfeeding, you can change your diet by avoiding dairy products and gassy foods. If you are giving formula milk to your baby, you can try changing the formula to a hypoallergenic one to avoid discomfort.

Do Not Overfeed

Do not overfeed your child. Sometimes this can also be a reason for her cry. Wait for 2 to 2.5 hours or until she shows signs of hunger.

Massaging

Massaging a baby can be a good soothing technique. You can use special lotion or massage oils.

Sleep

Good sleep provides the best calm and comfort to your baby. When they sleep, avoid flashy and bright lights and minimize the noise in the surrounding. Co-sleeping with your child will also reduce her fussiness.

Go Outside

Fussy newborn

A childseeing an outside environment, Credits: pexels


You can take your little one for a car ride. Take a walk with your baby in a stroller and show them some scenery. A change in sounds, air, lights, and temperature can certainly help change your baby’s mood.

Ask Help

Sometimes you may be physically tired and mentally exhausted from taking care of your child. Always ask for emotional support. Listen to music and calm down. De-stress yourself for a while and transfer the job to your partner. Once you are relaxed and back to form, resume the job.

Newborns can express their needs only through a cry. Always listen to their cues and act. Motivate yourself that you can handle your little one better and best all the time. This will strengthen your bond with your child. Happy parenting!

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