In the first few days of your baby’s life, it may seem like he often cries for no reason. Over time, parents learn to identify different types of baby cries produced by their child. Some infants cry less, while others cry more.
All babies have the same basic needs. Identifying these needs would be easier once you recognise the reasons why your baby could be crying.
Types of baby cries: Hunger cry
This is usually the most common reason for a baby to cry. This type of cry lasts longer and the baby will also try to suck his/her finger or pacifier. Also, the baby could start fussing and tossing around. Once you pick him/her up, the baby tries to find the breast. Even if you have fed the baby recently, he might have already gotten hungry and needs more feeding. This type of cry will stop once the baby is fed.
Types of baby cries: Warning cry
With this cry, the baby is communicating to his parents that he is wet, too cold or too hot. This type of cry begins suddenly and then intensifies. Check if the baby is wet or if he is suffering from any other discomfort, such as tightness of clothing.
Types of baby cries: Tiredness cry
Sometimes a baby cries when he feels very tired. This type of cry is resonant, and the baby can also seem very agitated. The crying can be accompanied by rubbing of the eyes or moving arms and legs. Putting on some relaxing music can help the baby calm down. Also, being around many people can stress out an infant. Over-stimulation can tire out a baby very quickly. Make sure that not too many family members or friends crowd around your baby.
Types of baby cries: The need-for-affection cry
Babies need a lot of bonding with parents, thus crying when left alone is very common. This type of cry ceases as soon as you pick up your baby. This means that the baby just needs to feel the mother’s or father’s heartbeat and breath. Don’t worry about spoiling your baby by giving too much affection. This is what babies need most in their first years of life.
Types of baby cries: Cry of pain
When a baby cries due to pain, it is usually the loudest sound he or she can make. This is also a sudden cry with a deafening sound. Try to check if the baby is in an uncomfortable position, whether the arms or legs are caught somewhere. If the baby still does not stop crying, undress him or her and check for any other discomfort.
Types of baby cries: Sickness cry
Parents will usually know right away if the baby is sick. This type of crying will be much different from all others. It can be a much softer cry, accompanied by apathy or tiredness. If the baby is not eating as much as before, experiencing diarrhoea or vomiting, parents should contact a paediatrician right away.
Some baby cries can occur at certain fixed hours, such as night time. This could mean that the baby needs more feeding or is experiencing colic. It is good to check with your doctor if you are still unsure about your baby’s crying patterns.