My first baby was a month premature and spent 6 days in the NICU. The baby was healthy, but NOT happy. When you walked into the NICU, you could hear her screaming (not crying, SCREAMING), louder than any of the other babies. And it kept on. And kept on. And kept on. For 6 months. We did everything. Tried it all. Including standing on our heads singing the national anthem. And we learned that there’re really only 5 Things to Try If Your Baby Won’t Stop Crying. And you know what? They’re the only things that work if the crying just goes on and on and on and on.
5 Things to Try If Your Baby Won’t Stop Crying
- Start by seeing a doctor. If you’ve seen one and heard “well, babies just cry” (like my doctor #2)–try another doctor. Clearly that one isn’t helping you. I was on doctor #4 when they found me an answer (in 2 seconds flat). And it was doctor #3 that told me “no, we can’t be having that–go see this specialist” (which is the doctor that had me an answer). Doctor. That’s a good start.
- Change baby’s diet. And if you’re breastfeeding, change your diet to match. I tried EVERY formula on the market and nothing seemed to help. Even if it did seem to drop the screaming a notch, there was nothing I could find that made it stop. So, I changed my diet, based on the recommendation of that final, fourth doctor. No dairy, no soy–for either of us. Which meant a really expensive formula for her and a pain in the butt for me. But worth it. Because the screaming stopped.
- Change what baby’s wearing. Yeah, you read that right. You might not think it’s too tight, but that cute set of baby leggings–some kiddos just can’t stand that little bit of tension on their thighs. Kind of a favorite, silly saying in our family “it’s binding”. Maybe baby’s clothes are too tight. Or itchy. Find something else for them to wear–or let them wear nothing at all, just to see if it’s that…even the diaper.
- Adjust the straps in baby’s car seat. I kid you not, imagine wearing a bra (that fits badly, COME ON), and it’s pulling down on you for any amount of time. Gives you a headache, right? And maybe makes your back hurt? Straps in the baby’s car seat could be affecting her in the same way. You might want to try that. It worked for our second baby–all I did was adjust those straps and we were suddenly a very happy baby.
- Check baby for lumps. Babies aren’t supposed to be lumpy. We learned this with baby #2 (little Donut! Eep!). Because, apparently, she had a hernia. And at 3 months she had to have it repaired, because it was all sorts of painful for her. And the lump was almost imperceptible to the naked eye. I had to feel for it by giving her a little bit of a massage. And I panicked–took her to the doctor. And she was in surgery in a couple of days. Scary, but necessary. And the crying when she was sitting up? Gone.
Without a doubt, the first 6 months of being a new mom to this screaming, yelling baby was the hardest time of my life. She was hurting and I was clueless. It was hard. Hard. Hard. Hard. She cried so much that she was hoarse sometimes. And I cried with her. So, please take my advice if you’re facing the same challenge. I know it’s hard. But it’s not like you can give up. They’re your baby and they’re not going away anytime soon. Just take a deep breath and start with #1. Because you will make it through.
P.S. The reason I wrote this is because I was literally searching this exact title from about the time she was a month old–and I found nothing helpful. So, I’m trying to be helpful. Take it for what it is. And know you’re not alone, my lovelies. You’re not alone.