Why is Baby Crying? Doctors and Scientists are trying to help children and their parents by exploring crying – a way for babies to communicate with their parents. We collected seven interesting facts.
On average, all babies cry about the same amount of time: about two hours a day in the first weeks of life. The peak falls in the sixth week when crying takes 2 hours 15 minutes a day. By the 12th week, babies cry much less: about 1 hour 10 minutes.
Baby crying and its definition
It is believed by scientists that by the cry of infants, their health status can be assessed. Children with neurological problems, autism, injuries give signals in the form of a different crying. For example, premature babies and infants exposed to lead or drugs cry at a higher variable rate than other babies. By crying, it is also possible to identify diseases of the respiratory system and other problems. In 2013, Brown University specialists developed a computer analyzer that can evaluate and classify a baby’s crying, indicating a possible medical problem. The system takes into account 80 parameters, each of which has tips about the health of the child. This study is rooted in the 1960s when cat scream syndrome was first described. So cry children with a rare genetic disorder caused by the absence of a fragment of the 5th chromosome.
When to see a doctor if the baby is crying
Call a doctor immediately if a sobbing baby:
- crying for more than two hours;
- has a temperature above 38 ℃;
- refuses food and drink or is sick;
- does not urinate or has traces of blood in the stool;
- does not respond to attempts to calm him.
Reasons for crying babies
The main causes of crying in infants are hunger, pain, anger, and fear. But it’s extremely difficult for parents to understand why their baby is crying and screaming. Researchers from Spain have decided to help in this matter and compiled a record of crying babies. The recognition of the emotions of the kids was helped by the study of facial expressions, eye movements and the dynamics of the cry, as well as an analysis of the manifestation of similar emotions in adults.
If the baby is angry, his eyes are usually half-closed or he looks away. The frequency of the scream gradually increases, the gesticulation of the baby intensifies.
Crying from hunger is usually the first thing parents assume. It is this reason that is always easy to recognize and eliminate, therefore, scientists have not considered this type of crying.
If the child cries with fear, then the scream immediately as strong as possible. Eyes are more often open, motionless and rounded.
If a child has something that hurts, he begins to cry sharply as loudly as he can. Eyes are often closed. This crying is usually stronger than other types of crying.
Mothers react to a baby crying
It is not easy for parents to quickly respond quickly to crying babies. Sometimes mothers are afraid to spoil their newborns and pause, not responding to their needs on time.
Scientists from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro conducted a study to find out which care strategy is right. They observed 260 mothers from the time they became pregnant until they reached six months of age. It turned out that babies whose mothers respond quickly, consistently and warmly to the baby’s crying have a healthier emotional development than babies whose mothers are less sensitive to their cries.
Massage your newborn babies
Massage for babies up to seven months can help them sleep better and cry less. This is evidenced by the results of nine studies on baby massage, covering a total of about 600 babies. After the massage, babies not only improved sleep and mood but also decreased levels of the stress hormone – cortisol – compared to babies who did not receive massage. It is clarified that the parents who were trained by medical personnel mainly massaged the children. If the massage is done by a person unfamiliar to the baby, perhaps there will be no positive effect.
No need to wake a crying baby
Crying babies in the middle of the night are the most painful and common problem for parents on earth. Scientists from Temple University in America conducted a study involving 1,200 infants from 6 to 36 months old and found that the best tactic, in this case, is not to wake the baby. When screaming at night, do not pick up the child in his arms, but give him the opportunity to calm down and sleep on his own.
Scientists explain that children, like adults, move from cycle to cycle every 2 hours, wake up and go back to sleep. At this moment, those who are not used to falling asleep on their own can toss and turn and cry, but if they help them all the time, they will not learn to sleep all night. The study found that about 70% of six-month-old children sleep all night or wake up one of the nights of the week. The remaining participants, who woke up every night at six months, began to sleep better by 15 months: they woke up 2 times a week at night, and by 24 months – 1 time per week. Among the poorly sleeping children, there were mainly breastfed boys.
Baby in different countries cry in different languages
Scientists from the University of Warwick conducted a study comparing the duration of crying for about 9,000 babies from different countries. Their behavior was monitored from birth until the 12th week. It turned out that children from the UK, Canada, Italy, and the Netherlands cry for longer. And less than others, parents from Denmark, Germany and Japan listen to the cries of newborns. Crying due to infantile colic, which usually lasts more than three consecutive hours and more than three days a week, was specifically measured. It turned out that 28% of British babies, 34% of Canadians, 21% of Italian suffer from them, but in Denmark and Germany, there were the lowest rates: colic bothered 5.5% of young Danes and 6.7% of German babies.
Your baby can sing
The mother’s tongue affects the intonation of the crying of the newborn. This is especially evident in tonal languages, where pitch and vibrations determine the meaning of words. Scientists from the University of Wurzburg as part of the study found that the crying of newborn children from China and Cameroon is different from the crying of European babies. The crying of babies from the Tikar people born in Cameroon is more like singing: it has raised and lowering tones and large intervals between high and low tones, as in the language of their mothers – lamnso. A slightly less pronounced, but also intonational cry is characteristic of the North Chinese language of Putonghua: children easily and quickly move from height to height compared to newborns from Germany. So recommendations to talk with your baby in the womb and sing songs are not an empty phrase. The baby really still perceives the mother’s speech in the stomach and begins to try to reproduce the native language from birth.