Calming a crying newborn

Your newborn is crying, now what? Try these quick solutions to calm him or her down.

It can be scary to have a newborn who won't stop crying. Learning to read your baby's cues, along with having a few tricks in your toolbelt will go a long way toward making you and your baby feel safe and happy.

Hold your baby skin to skin

Skin to skin contact reduces stress levels for both mother and baby. When the baby is calm, then offer the breast

Let your baby suck

Offer a finger (or pacifier) for the baby to suck on for a minute or two. Sucking is a way babies sooth themselves.

Give a taste

Hand express milk from the nipple for the baby to taste. Or dribble milk over the nipple to entice him to the breast.

Provide motion

Pick the baby up, rock, walk, bounce or dance. Babies are used to constant motion while in the uterus. Providing motion reminds them of “home”.

Offer swaddling

Wrap the baby snuggly for a few minutes

Check baby's skin temperature

Feel your baby’s tummy and make sure he is not too hot or too cool.

Stay calm

Babies are sensitive to your stress level. Remain calm and your baby may follow suit.

Reduce the stimulation

Too much stimulation, for too long, can be over-whelming for babies Dim the lights, make no sounds and give the baby a break. Sometimes white noise like the sound of a hair dryer helps.

Burp your baby or bicycle their legs

Maybe there is a burp that needs to come up or gas that needs to go down.

Do something different

If none of these solutions work, distract your baby with something different. Blow in his face, sing or hum, hold him up over your head or give a bath.

Watch for feeding cues:

  • Waking up

  • Licking lips and sticking tongue out

  • Sucking sounds

  • Rooting

  • Hand to mouth activity

  • Generalized body movements

Feed the baby before the last feeding cue:

  • Crying

You won't spoil your baby by attending to their needs.