Hi, we have a one month old baby who's amazing, but we're struggling a bit with the amount she cries. She's having a crying fit at the moment and is just inconsolable. I tried feeding her and she does feed but half-heartedly and then starts up crying again. I'm worried it's the dreaded reflux but part of me is still hoping it's just "normal" baby crying. I know it varies but how much does your baby cry and does she/he have crying sessions where they just can't be soothed? Ours can go on for hours at its worst and it's really hard to know if it's just standard baby behaviour or not!
Is she getting enough sleep? One month olds generally need so much sleep - mine were more asleep than awake.
When is the crying?
When they're massively overtired, they switch very quickly to inconsolable crying. Cuddling in a pitch black room with music or white noise very loud was the answer once they were in that state. Before that, bedtime was the minimum - change into pjs then feed. No bath etc as far too stimulating. Also I kept them in the sling pretty much all day.
Is it at a particular time of the day?
Both of mine went through weeks of screaming for hours every evening. It's called colic but whether it is abdominal pain, discomfort, over-tiredness or something else, who knows?
They were both hysterical and totally inconsolable, even unresponsive while it was happening but it stopped after a few weeks with both girls and never came back.
My first was extremely sensitive to overheating. Literally as the room temp reached 20 deg she would start screaming.
Colic normally gets worse in the evenings.
My second had silent reflux, Health visitor diagnosed at 6 weeks so worth talking to them?
My ds would have an unsettled period each evening at that age, about 5:30 for about an hour. I still have no idea what caused it. My poor dh would arrive home each evening in the midst of it, looking forward to seeing his son & getting screamed at till bedtime. He was convinced ds was grumpy till he got passed it, whereas he was a lovely baby otherwise.
I'd love it if it was something I could fix like being overtired or overheated. It happens at different times of day - mid morning, some point during the evening, during the night - so not sure it can be colic as it isn't like clockwork every evening. I'm
terrified worried it could be silent reflux as she does make a coughing/choking type sound quite often and she does stick her tongue out a lot. Really don't want to have her on meds as she's so small but I read reflux can last ages whereas I'm hoping it's something that will get easier.
She does sleep quite a bit, I try and get her to sleep as much as possible. Some people say babies do just cry but then you hear people say their babies are easy and chilled out. What amount of crying is normal though?! So hard to know when it's your first and so hard not to get upset when she's crying her eyes out!
Is it worse after feeding?
Dc has reflux and would feed normally for a short period then arch back and scream while feeding off and on for hours. It might be worth investigating as dc seemed to scream and be upset a lot of the day and night and it was only when I went for my 6wk check that my concerns were taken seriously I.e the fact dc breath smelt acidic and dc was eating so much constantly to try and soothe the burning and then throwing up due to overeating.
Obviously I can't diagnose over the Internet and there are a number of reasons babies cry but I personally am in the camp that they do so for a reason and get frustrated by doctors and people saying that it's colic...what is colic? In my experience it's where nobody knows why a baby is crying. Sorry if that is upsetting for anyone and as I explained I was told dc had colic when in fact dc needed medication which like you I was reluctant to give, but dc was instantly a happier baby and no more screaming
Plus as a side note don't be fobbed off as a first time mum, dc is my first and I think it was this that meant doctors dismissed my concerns as me not knowing what I was doing. "Be calm and your baby will be calm" was all I got told which is so patronising when you know something is wrong. You know your baby best and I say follow your instincts even if it means getting second opinions.
sounds like it could be. I assume you're bf? The other possibility is tongue tie which can manifest as silent reflux.
I am BF and was so pleased it was going well after the first sore couple of weeks, so am not sure about tongue tie as she seems to be doing it properly. Really hate the idea of putting her on meds for reflux but last night was the toughest night (cried from 11pm-4am) so I'm feeling at my wits end!
It would all be ok if I could tell myself this is just normal newborn crying or linked to a growth spurt. Do you think there's any hope?!
At one month I wouldn't normally expect crying for 5hrs solid unless something was going on. What were you doing when the crying was happening?
I really think that going to see your gp or speak to your Hvisitor. What concerns you about the meds if it was reflux? You can look into other ways of helping such as keeping dc upright for 30mins after feeds, making sure you've winded sufficiently or if you are breastfeeding it may be something you're eating, e.g lactose intolerance.
These are just some suggestions however and in no means can anyone diagnose over the Internet.
I hope you manage to get help as I know how truly soul destroying relentless crying can be.
My first did the five hors straight thing - similar hours too! That was the worst night for us. He had reflux (silent). It was a combination of that and overtiredness which resulted in the 5 hour screaming fits. We would result to sticking him in the sling and going for a walk in the early hours!!!! It would usually send him to sleep in about ten (achingly long) minutes!
Do rule out tongue tie before speaking to the GP about medication. However the first few months with reflux are pretty hairy so take the medication if that's the diagnosis.
It really is, feel like it's a struggle not to be really down about it. I'm googling reflux posts and it's depressing reading, sounds like it can go on for ages I've just fed her and she's sleepy but already looking uncomfortable and making coughing noises and wriggling. Last night we tried everything to soothe her and nothing worked, she was so distressed.
With the meds, I'm just not keen on giving her drugs that might have long term effects etc, she's so small. I'm a bit like that anyway - I rarely even take paracetamol myself! I'm thinking maybe I should wait it out a bit to see if it settles naturally and log how often the crying fits happen but at the same time don't want to suffering.
Maybe I'll see how tonight goes - praying it's a better night!
Cross post greathunt - when did the reflux get better for you?
I hope it's better for you tonight, if it seems like it's after feeds then you may want to think about reflux medication if your doctor suggests. Dc had acid reflux and would throw up all day and night disturbing sleep and wanting to eat relentlessly but after a week of zantac (ranitidine) there was less screaming and pain as it stops acid production. I was very reluctant to give medication as well but after sitting crying every day for over a month with a screaming dc waking every half an hour I was pleased of the solution. Also the effects on the throat from acid burning repeatedly was another deciding factor but there are different types of medication and even things such as thickener to stop it that way. It's something to consider.
Another thing perhaps you could look into is wrapping up your baby as this is meant to help, I know some people don't agree with swaddling however you can get zip up swaddle sacks or wraps with velcro that would mean no chance of them putting a blanket over their head.
Keep going though, 4weeks is so tiny and they really do improve as time goes on. Dc is now 6 months and reflux issues almost clear.
Mmmmm from about 6 months. 4-5 months was dreadful.
I didn't like giving them meds (I don't take pain relief for headaches!) but had to. Ds had a choking incidence where acid came up his nose and he couldn't breath. He also used to bring up acid - which flicked me in the eye once and was painful!
With dd I managed it myself as had done it before. Basically I:
- held her upright for 30 mins post feeding. I would use a bouncy chair otherwise
- wind her after each feed. Even if this took 20 mins there would always always be a burp in there (but she also had tongue tie and took down air).
- wind by rubbing and only patting gently
- no tight waistbands and nappies loosely fastened. Dd lived in sleepsuits and dungarees until 9 months or so
- didnt lie flat within 30 mins of a feed
- no pram only a sling. She would scream if she'd just been fed as it would pressure her tummy. Usually a dummy would help. I tried many many dummies until she settled on a nuk soother
- kept her in the sling almost all day for the first 3 months.
- got out of the house every day
- white noise and blackout blinds for her room so when she needed settling, I could take her in there
- take help when needed but ignore those who's advice was ill informed!
- cut out dairy and soya as these made dd and da text via my BM. God the reaction after I had soya was something to be seen I made sure I had supplements to compensate for the lost calcium and vit B as I got very run down with my first.
I also found a routine helped. Get up with DH, shower while he looks after baby, go out in the morning while baby napped in sling. Have lunch - occasionally i got lucky and ds/dd would nap if tightly swaddled in the Moses basket and I could eat lunch. Otherwise they'd stay in the sling while I ate.
Afternoon try and get out or do stuff around the house with baby in sling and get them to nap (at around 3 months they liked looking around so would have to walk by a busy road or block their view to get them to sleep). If I was at home, I'd nap with them on my chest.
Try and let your DH take baby in the sling after they've fed eg at the weekend. sometimes you feel like you're the only one who knows your baby but this is something he can do quite easily.
I also had some success With a loose routine. Basically before 3 months or so I made sure they could nap within 45 mins of being awake. With dd (which I didn't do with ds), I realised that she was ready for bed at around 6pm so made sure feeds from then were in the dark. She settled down into night/days much much more quickly than ds did. With him I made the mistake of thinking he wanted a nap in the evenings around 5/6pm, he'd wake after 45 mins then wouldn't settle again until hours and hours later. Once I clocked what he needed, it got a lot easier!
I propped up the head end of their cots with blocks under the legs as well.
Phew - long post - I hope that's enough for now!!! Am happy to pm you and do keep posting as there are many of us who've been through this.
I have two beautiful children now (4&2) and its all a memory. So you can get through it x
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