How to Calm a Baby Down: A First Time Parent Guide

how to calm a baby down

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If you’re a first-time parent in search of how to calm a baby down, you know it’s one of the most challenging things to learn about the new realm of parenthood.

Between nonstop crying, fussing, and expressing anything other than tranquility, babies are a handful. While cute, they truly are stressful little beings, especially in their first few weeks of life.

And the stress continues to grow if you are unable to stop the crying, fussing, and other behaviors. It grows on you and wears on you. This can unfortunately lead to you not remaining calm.

The most important step in keeping a baby calm is keeping yourself calm. Ready to learn more? Just keep reading. 

Invest in Baby Toys – And Lots of Them

If you haven’t already, you should seriously consider investing in lots of baby toys that are proven to keep their attention for long periods of time. In terms of keeping a baby happy, calm, and quiet, baby toys are where it’s all at.

Some of these toys can even be sensory or stimulatory related!

For example, if you were to give your baby a Beanie bear, chances are they would remain engaged for so long that the tears would fade in due time. Also known as TY Beanie Babies, Beanie bears are furry and filled with beads.

Both of these textures are related to sensorimotor development in young children.

This is one way to end your Google searches for, “how to quiet a baby” – sensory toys can comfort an infant and guide them in regulating their discomfort, so it is worth looking into if you visualize it as a stable solution.

Play Soothing Sounds

Interestingly enough, infants can easily sink into a deep slumber or state of serenity just by hearing soothing sounds, such as white noise. For example, using a white noise machine at night time will help your baby get to sleep. 

If you think using white noise is a solid solution on how to calm a baby down, you can try it with your infant or newborn.

Just keep in mind that some children this age might not like the sound – if that’s the case, simply remove the white noise machine and try exposing them to gentle, softer sounds. These sounds can include:

  • Waves crashing
  • Rainfall in a forest
  • ASMR
  • Bird songs
  • Babbling brook
  • Crackling fireplace
  • Sounds that may happen frequently in your home (fan, humidifier, etc.)

If you’re not sure about using sleep sounds with your baby, try playing them as you are getting to sleep. See what kind of effect they have on you – do you feel peaceful and ready to sleep? Or are the sounds evoking other emotions?

Place the Crib Close to Your Bed

By placing your baby’s crib near your bed or investing in a bedside crib, such as ones that attach to or fit alongside your bed, your baby will naturally feel calm when it’s time to sleep.

Yes, infants develop spatial awareness and form bonds even at such a young age. It’s wild to consider, but so majorly important – and true!

Additional benefits of bedside cribs include:

  • Easier to tend to your baby for feeding, diapering, and calming if needed
  • A safer alternative to co-sleeping, also known as sleeping with your baby in the same bed
  • Comfortable for C-section parents who are in recovery

So, not only are cribs placed close to your bed good for your baby’s levels of peace, but they are good for other hugely important reasons. It is most definitely worth looking into if your baby becomes fussier around nighttime. 

Examine Your Baby’s Eating Habits

You read that right – overfeeding your baby, feeding at times when they aren’t hungry, and food sensitivity all contribute to how stressed (or not!) your baby is. That’s why part of how to calm a baby down is examining eating habits.

Beginning with overfeeding, it’s important to be wise in terms of what times you are feeding your child. For example, if you feed them at 11:00 a.m., you shouldn’t feed them again at 11:45 a.m. 

Overfeeding any baby has the potential to make them feel immense amounts of discomfort because they can’t digest all of the milk or formula they’ve had in such a close time frame.

Discomfort leads to fussiness, and that’s all we are trying to avoid when learning how to calm a baby down. 

Additionally, feeding at times when your baby isn’t hungry will lead to discomfort because they might feel fuller than their small stomachs can allow. When it isn’t feeding time, help your baby find their thumb or a pacifier.

Lastly, food sensitivity and allergies in infants are widely critical to consider when thinking about your baby’s eating habits.

Does your infant get particularly fussy or upset with a specific food? Does their face swell or do they break out in hives? These all may be signs of a food sensitivity or allergy. 

If you are a parent who breastfeeds, for example, you may notice your infant displaying some of the following symptoms after a feeding session:

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Spitting up excessively
  • Hives
  • Signs of pain in the abdomen (grunting, crying)
  • Eczema 
  • Wheezing or coughing
  • Watering eyes, runny nose, and/or stuffy nose
  • Swelling in the lips, throat, and/or tongue

Yikes! All of these sound pretty scary. However, infants cannot be allergic to breastmilk

If your baby is displaying these signs after breastfeeding, it is likely an allergic reaction to either proteins in the milk that the mother is drinking or proteins in a dairy-heavy food that she is eating.

How to Calm a Baby Down 101: You Passed!

Congrats, you’ve passed “How to Calm a Baby Down 101”! Now that you know all of the tips and tricks on how to make a baby happy, actually doing it will be the easiest breeze of your lifetime. 

As a first-time parent, calming your baby is a challenge. But when you introduce baby toys, play soothing sounds, invest in or consider a bedside crib, and examine the eating habits of your little one, it becomes calming for you!

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