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how to soothe babyNaturally, babies cry a lot. It's the only way they can tell you when they need something. Most of the time these fits are easy to solve, but often parents can struggle to discern the cause. This is especially true for new parents. Fortunately, our little ones are usually rather simple and you can use these steps to calm your fussy baby.

1. Meet baby's need.

It goes without saying that if your child is crying, he probably wants something. Infants don’t cry to spite you and they shouldn’t be allowed to cry indefinitely. When the crying starts, quick check the diaper for wetness, give a change if necessary, and then offer a feeding. Sometimes baby just wants a little love.

2. Sway or rock your baby.

When your child was in the womb, he was constantly being rocked to sleep. Even when you were still, baby could feel your breathing. Movement is soothing to him, so pick him up and rock him a bit in your arms, or put him in a swing. Even laying him in the car seat or stroller and rocking it with your foot should quiet baby right down.

3. Turn on a soothing sound.

A white noise machine is a worthwhile investment. For the same reason a swaddle makes your baby feel secure, so does a little bit of noise. He heard all sorts of external and internal sounds when he was in the womb, so silence can be uncomfortable. If you don’t have a machine, turn on some music or whisper softly until your baby calms down.

4. Keep a diary.

This is especially helpful if a number of people care for your child throughout the week. If your time with your baby is limited, it might take a while to recognize a pattern of fussiness. Keep a diary (nothing fancy, just a notebook page will do) that records the time your baby was cranky and how you solved it. Your may find that your baby finds something especially irritating.

5. Keep yourself calm.

Children (even infants) can pick up when mom and dad are stressed. The worst thing you can do is get frustrated and begin arguing with your significant other. Take deep breaths and speak soothingly so your baby picks up on your calmness and relaxes.

6. Offer the "mute" button.

While long-term pacifier use isn’t something you want to get in the habit of, they have their uses, like when you’re out in public and you really need your kid to quiet down. Carry at least one around with you all the time (a few, maybe, in case baby throws it on the ground) even if your child doesn’t normally use it.

7. Swaddle your baby.

The swaddle is an excellent tool, even when your child isn’t going to sleep. The instant comfort, safety and security they feel usually calms them right down. The effect may even be strong enough to make your baby drowsy. Any blanket will do, but a specially made swaddle is best.

8. Use an online tool for help.

If you’ve tried everything you can think of and nothing is working, The Fussy Baby Site is a great source of guidance for cranky and colicky babies. They offer all sort of tips for moms dealing with agitated little ones.

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baby headrestGuest Blog by Alicia Overby - Founder & President of Baby Elephant Ears

Alicia is wife, mother, and creator of Baby Elephant Ears. Baby Elephant Ears was created out of parental concern, not financial desire. In 2005, when their second child was an infant, he cried all the time and just couldn't seem to get comfortable.

After seeking advice and suggestion from the medical community and alternative medicine, they eventually ended up in the chiropractors office where their baby was successfully treated for asubluxation, discomfort most likely the result of the strain during labor, which was now being exacerbated by the normal lack of infant neck strength. Only proper neck, head, and back alignment would offer him relief. When they couldn't find a product to give their baby the necessary support, Alicia took matters into her own hands and crafted her own infant support pillow. The first Baby Elephant Ears was born!

For more information, visit www.babyelephantears.com.

Interested in writing a guest blog for Babee Talk? Send your topic idea to media@babeetalk.com.

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