Crying of the newborn: this is what the tears tell us

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Catherine Le Nevez
@catherinelenevez
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Contents

  • 1 Newborn crying: the main causes
  • 2 The infant's cry of hunger
  • 3 Newborn crying from sleep and fatigue
  • 4 Newborn crying out of loneliness
  • 5 Newborn cry for temperature
  • 6 Newborn crying due to wet or dirty diaper
  • 7 Crying of the newborn for colic
  • 8 Crying of the newborn due to illness
  • 9 Do's (and don'ts) for the baby's crying

The baby cries, cries and cries. It is difficult to understand. It is stressful. And often the baby's crying becomes even unnerving. Especially for novice parents. If you then consider that in the first three months of life a newborn cries for an average of two hours a day and sometimes even more than three, then it is clear that the matter must be taken with due calm.



Those of you who can put yourself in the Zen position and repeat "ohm, ohm, ohm". But besides trying to relax, what can be done to understand babies crying? Understanding, yes, because crying is the way in which the little one, in the absence of words, communicates with us. And every cry is different. Here are some pointers for experiencing screams, screams, and tears with less anxiety.

Newborn crying: the main causes

The reasons why a newborn cries are various, but not infinite: hunger, sleep, thirst, loneliness, dirty or wet diaper, malaise are some of these. We adults seem almost "silly" reasons because obviously we are used to dealing with much more serious problems. But if you try with your imagination to put yourself in the shoes of the little ones, you will understand that it is a considerable stress. And crying is the only means of communication they currently know. How many emotions contain the tears of a newborn ...



The infant's cry of hunger

A child's cry of hunger is the culmination of a growing situation. The little one cries when, after having given some "alarm" signals, he can't take it anymore and he absolutely has to eat. If the baby is hungry, the "crisis" begins with a noise similar to coughing. The child becomes restless, sucks his lips, stretches his neck back and puts his little hands in his mouth. The need for him must be satisfied as soon as possible to prevent him from screaming. 

If, on the other hand, this happens, the solution is only one, that is to give him food as soon as possible, first of all to prevent him from ingesting too much air with the cry or being too nervous to suck and satiate. When a baby is not happy, even feeding becomes problematic. The advice is therefore to try to prevent desperate crying by responding to stimuli as soon as possible. 

Newborn crying from sleep and fatigue

If, on the other hand, sleep is the reason for babies crying, mum and dad will have to check for some clues: light moans, first loud crying, then a pause and tears again. In addition, the little one usually yawns, touches his face nervously, kicks, as if he couldn't find a position to fall asleep.

In this case, try to put it in a quiet environment, sing or let the sound of your voice be heard, rock it and caress it. Despite being so sleepy, he will hardly be able to fall asleep if he is too restless.


Crying of the newborn from loneliness

Another cause of babies crying is loneliness. Does it seem impossible to you? Far from it! A small child, who recently left his mother's belly where he spent nine months of his life cradled and pampered, needs physical contact, company and to be entertained. If this is the reason, the baby looks around for attention and the crying begins with small noises like “verses” that stop when he is picked up. But if you leave him alone he may cry quite loudly and at intervals, as if to say “Hey mom! I'm here too!". 


It happens that the newborn experiences a feeling of loneliness when he wakes up and finds himself alone, for example in his cot or in a room other than the one where his parents are. Its therefore a way to attract attention. According to some theories (somewhat questionable in our view) he should be left to cry until he falls asleep again (from exhaustion). If you are capable of it good for you, but honestly how would you feel in his place?

Newborn crying for the temperature

A further problem capable of triggering a baby's crying may be the body temperature: whether it is hot or cold. If it is the first case, you will see him moaning, wheezing and eager, as well as probably red in the face and sweaty. In the second case, however, the crying will be strong and the lower lip will tremble. 

In fact, understanding how much and how to cover a newborn is one of those things that send new mothers a bit into the ball. Yet there is a very simple way to know: to regulate exactly as on oneself. Children have almost the same perception of heat and cold as we do, so we can use the same yardstick. 


Newborn crying for wet or dirty diaper

Another reason for impatience in a child is a wet or dirty diaper. But can you imagine the annoyance? It must be huge. And the child will let you know without a shadow of a doubt, moaning and writhing. Usually this type of crying (which is not very strong, but gives more sense of discomfort) stops as soon as the diaper is changed and the baby washed and freshened. 

Crying of the newborn for colic

Here we come to one of the crying fits of newborns that are most difficult for parents to manage and understand: that of colic. A definition that has been found to be mostly incorrect, so much so that now the evening and distressed cry of the newborn within three months is called "inconsolable crying of the first trimester of life". And the name already says it all. 


These are high-pitched screams, which begin suddenly. The newborn stiffens, turns red, tends to bend his legs towards him and cries in despair. It can be the tension accumulated during the day, real fatigue. Or of pains that, as they arrive, just as magically disappear, leaving the newborn baby and the exhausted mum and dad a restful sleep. 

To pass the sleepless hours, you need to arm yourself with patience, find a comfortable position for the baby, perhaps with the belly on the forearm, giving a few taps on the bottom or doing some relaxing massage or, again, opening the diaper and leaving him a little naked . The only consolation? After the third month the colic passes, without any reason and regardless of the drugs used.

Crying of the newborn due to illness

Clearly a baby cries even when he is sick. Since he can't tell us what is causing him pain or where he feels it, the baby cries. However, it is a different type of cry from the others, for example from the strong one for hunger or the one at intervals to be picked up. So when it occurs, special attention should be paid to our child's condition.

When a child is unwell, he is often weak, with his eyes closed, sleepy. Crying is more of a lament. As a first step, take your temperature and, to be more calm, talk to the pediatrician. He will be able to reassure you and show you what is best to do. 

Do's (and don'ts) for the baby's crying

It seems easy to say and very difficult to implement, but the first thing to do if your baby is crying is to try to stay calm. A trifle, right ?, when you find yourself in the house with a screaming bundle that you can't calm down. We know that it is not easy, but it is really already half a solution to the problem.

Crying generates many feelings in parents: helplessness, bewilderment, anxiety, nervousness, sometimes even fear. The trouble is that what you feel, you also pass on to the little one. This creates a very dangerous vicious circle: he cries, you get agitated, he cries even louder. 

What to do then? First of all try to understand what is the cause that triggered the crying crisis and find a solution. Hunger? Off with the feed. Sleep? Go to a quiet room and rock the baby. Dirty diaper? Change on the fly. Colic takes longer and, consequently, patience. There are some medications (prescribed only by the pediatrician) that can help, as well as tummy rubs and a walk. Gradually you will find out what makes your puppy feel better. 

There is one very important thing to underline. If the child does not calm down in any way and you feel like you are losing control of the situation, get a helping hand. Involve your partner, pass the baby over to him, let him cradle a little, so you will have time to recover for a moment. Prolonged and continuous crying can be exasperating, don't be ashamed of this. But we must immediately take action to avoid making unreasonable gestures, such as shaking the baby. 

Article updated on May 31, 2022

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