Baby's First Year · Breastfeeding

Why do babies cry?

Parent holding crying newborn baby in hands

It’s normal for babies to cry.  Did you know that babies cry an average of 2 to 2 1/2 hours a day?  Crying peaks at 2 months then gradually decreases by the 4th to 5th month.  Your baby may cry for long periods for no apparent reason.  This does not mean your baby has colic.

Most babies:

  • cry more at night, sometimes for an hour or longer
  • have one fussy period each day, often in the afternoon or evening
  • cry more at 6-8 weeks than at birth

Crying is a way for your baby to communicate to you before they learn to speak.  Figuring out why your baby cries may be difficult.

Some reasons that babies cry include:

  • hunger
  • need to be cuddled
  • tired or over stimulated
  • need a diaper change
  • pain or discomfort

Try to calm your baby by:

  • breastfeeding
  • holding your baby skin-to-skin
  • cuddling or rocking your baby
  • carrying your baby in a carrier
  • wrapping your baby loosely in a blanket
  • changing your baby’s diaper
  • giving your baby a bath
  • giving your baby a massage
  • taking your baby to a quiet room

Sometimes your baby will still cry even though you have tried everything to calm your baby.  This can be very stressful.  Call someone for help during these stressful times.

To speak with a Public Health Nurse, contact us at (416) 338-7600 or chat online.


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