Ah, a fussy baby. As a new parent, you’ll agonize over why your child is upset. A few months later and you’ll understand that fussiness is part of growing up. It doesn’t mean your child is unhealthy or upset, it just means he or she has a need for mom and dad to meet. Here are some reasons your child might be fussy.
1. She’s hungry – This is usually the most obvious solution and the easiest solved. Look out for signs that indicate your baby is hungry before she gets upset about it: lip smacking, rooting (turning her mouth to your hand if you touch her cheek), and gnawing on their own hands.
2. She’s tired – Again, this is one of the most common causes. Simple solution: put your kid to sleep. (If only it were that easy, right?) Look for the tired signs (eye-rubbing, yawning, unfocused gaze, and disinterest in her favorite things).
3. She’s wet/dirty – Sitting in one’s mess is uncomfortable, so it makes sense for your little one to complain about it. Some kids can stand a dirty diaper for a quite a while, but others want out right away.
4. She wants to be held – A baby who wants to be in your arms isn’t being needy. Babies don’t manipulate. If she wants to be held, it’s because she has an emotional need at that moment. Hold her close until she calms down or pulls way herself.
5. She’s teething – Some babies struggle with this more than others, but most children deal with it. If she’s constantly chewing on things, pulling at her ears, and acting cranky, she likely has some teeth putting pressure on her gums.
6. She’s overstimulated – While stimulation is usually good for learning, there is a limit. Lights, noises, and too much human interaction can overstimulate a baby and cause them to cry and eventually shut down. Move to a dark, quiet place and let your baby calm down.
7. She wants more stimulation – On the other hand, it’s common for babies to fuss when they’re bored. They want to see and hear new things, touch everything they see, and experience as much as possible. It can be tiring, but try to give them their fill.
8. She needs a burp – During feedings, some babies swallow too much air and need a post-meal burp. Usually by five to six months you don’t have to worry about this anymore.
9. She’s gassy – Gas pain is especially uncomfortable for your child because she lacks the necessary muscle strength and control to work it out herself. Bend her legs up over her belly a few times to try and work it out for her.
10. She’s ill– If you’ve met all the obvious needs, but baby is still upset, something deeper might be at cause. First, check her body for any obvious bruises or cuts. Then check her temperature. Always trust your instincts and call a doctor if you honestly feel something is wrong.
Written by Karen Barski, BSN, RN, Mother of five, Certified Infant Care Specialist & Instructor, & Inventor of the Woombie Baby Swaddle
Karen has been an RN for 18 years, and has worked in many different nursing roles. As a Certified Infant Care Specialist, Karen counsels thousands of families yearly on a multitude of issues relating to pregnancy and infancy. Also, as a mother of five, she has invaluable experience and tips to share.
Since 2007, Karen’s company, KB Designs, has invented a line of signature baby swaddle products that have helped parents easily transition their new babies from womb to home. There are multiple designs and sizes so that babies can enjoy the comfort and security of the Woombie up until the time they begin to roll.
Each product has been created and designed by Karen because of a need she identified in her life with her five children. With convenience, safety, and fashion in mind, KB Designs has helped over a half million babies and counting!
For more information, visit www.woombie.com.
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