Posts filed under ‘crying’

What Babies Mean When They Cry

We were flying to Charleston, SC and there were lots of families on the flight with babies or young children. Two toddlers got my complete attention because of how intense and long their cries were. Both were toddler boys and the one on the airplane cried for about 30-45 minutes – probably because his ears were popping as we descended. I felt so sorry for him and his mom. 

The other little boy was strapped in a stroller (at the airport) and none of his “kin” would take him out and soothe him. He was miserable!

I ❤️ watching children and their parents interact just because… Kids make parents earn their parent wings everyday because they are so unpredictable. Yet if you are in tune with your baby or very young child, you will be able to interpret what their crying means. 

Since babies and often young children can’t communicate in words we understand, their crying means different things at different times. A baby may cry if she’s too hot or cold, if she’s lonely, if she needs a change of scenery and wants to move around, or if she just needs to “let it all out.”

I suspect if the child in the airplane had been allowed to walk up and down the aisle, he would have settled down.

Here are several reasons that babies cry:

I’m hungry

Listen for: A low-pitched, rhythmic, repetitive cry, combined with other signals such as rooting for the breast, a sucking motion with her tongue, lip-smacking, or putting her fingers into her mouth.

My grandson does this and my daughter says to him “Oh you’re hungry huh?” They understand each other perfectly.

I’m tired or uncomfortable

Listen for: A whiny, nasal, continuous cry that builds in intensity is usually baby’s signal that she’s had enough (as in, “Nap, please!” — usually accompanied by yawns, eye-rubs or ear-tugs) or is otherwise uncomfortable (“I need a clean diaper” or “I can’t get comfortable in this car seat”). 

You will notice this in malls where Mom has been shopping and forgotten that her baby is on a schedule. The baby starts with a mild cry that builds in intensity. “Hurry up and take care of me Mom!

I’ve had enough

Listen for: Get ready for a fussy, whiny cry. She may try to turn her head or body away from over stimulating sights or sounds. 

This is a good time to change sceneries. If you are in a noisy place, move to a quieter area and rock the baby until he settles down.

This also happens when your baby or toddler is beyond tired. They are fighting sleep. You will have to settle them down, so that they can fall asleep.

Rub their back, say soothing things, or play relaxing music. There is a wonderful app by Calm that plays all kinds of music to help babies through adults relax.

I’m bored

Listen for: This cry starts out as coos (as baby tries to get a good interaction going), then turns into fussing (when the attention she’s craving isn’t coming), then builds to bursts of indignant crying (“Why are you ignoring me?”), alternating with whimpers (“C’mon, what’s a baby got to do to get a cuddle around here?”).

This is easy. Pick your child up; engage them; laugh and talk to them. It makes me crazy when people say “You spoil your child when you pick them up.” I guess at some point, you can spoil your child, but pick them up, talk and play with them, so that they are emotionally secure.

The power of touch and engagement is really important to a child’s emotional growth, self esteem and sense of security.

Go have fun with your child!

Interested in learning more about your family’s dynamics? Contact me – Ms. Parent Guru to receive information about my inspiring parenting programs for Aging Parents, Mothers and Daughters, Mothers and their Sons, Fathers and Daughters or Fathers and their Sons.

Click Here to become a part of my parenting community.

C. Lynn Williams, #MsParentguru

Family Dynamics Strategist, Author & Speaker

www.clynnwilliams.com

 

July 6, 2019 at 12:47 pm Leave a comment


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