Techniques We Use to Cope With Our Fussy Baby
Not every baby that is born into this world has an easy temperament. Within the first few weeks, we knew that we had a fussy baby. He had trouble settling down at all and cried a lot. Through trial and error we found solutions that helped us to help him adjust to life outside the womb.
Carrying Baby A Lot
I have spent countless hours carrying our baby between the kitchen and the living room. The motion seems to help calm him down. The sling carrier we got was perfect for this. I just pop him in it and start walking. In those early weeks, I often even let him sleep in the carrier I wore so that he would not wake up when I put him down. I can even sometimes get things done around the house when I have him in there.
There is nothing quite so effective at calming down our crying baby as running the vacuum cleaner. Our baby often has a hard time winding down enough to sleep. But when I sit in the rocking chair and turn on the vacuum, he calms down almost immediately. Sometimes it takes him awhile to calm down enough to sleep but the vacuum will always at least make our baby stop crying even if it does not put him to sleep. The sound of running water sometimes works to get our baby to stop crying too. My husband has also used the “shhh” sound to get him to stop crying and sleep. The trick of it is that whatever sound it is, it needs to be louder than his screams or it has no effect.
Modifying My Diet
I am breastfeeding our baby so what I eat he ends up eating. When I cut dairy products out of my diet, his fussiness decreased dramatically. From what we have read on the subject, some babies have a difficult time with dairy products. I also cut out all caffeine from my diet since some babies are more sensitive to that as well. I added in ginger and peppermint teas to my diet too. From what an herbalist told me, these can help settle his stomach and reduce crying.
Our baby’s startle reflex would sometimes cause him to wake up at night or from naps and start to fuss. His little arms would flail out to the sides and wake him up. When we swaddle our baby, he wakes up less often and seems to sleep more deeply. We use a large receiving blanket and just make sure that his arms are wrapped up tightly next to his body.
It can be tempting to give into the advice to just let a baby just cry it out but try to find ways to soothe your crying baby instead. We tried many different things before we found what worked for our baby. When I feel like I cannot take it anymore, I remind myself that our baby will only be this little once and that this stage will pass.