What to do with baby that just will not be calmed?!(27 Posts)
I'm at the end of my tether with my almost 9 week old DS
He is horrendous. I've never known a baby like it. My DD was never like this and I'm at a loss as to what to do!!
He screams. Not just a bit of crying that escalates. I mean he goes from quiet content, to hysterical screaming that cannot be stopped within a millisecond. Evening are the worst. Tonight he's been screaming hysterically since around 6:30pm and is still going now. He is to the point where he's so exhausted he can't even cry properly!!
We know he has CMPA and reflux, but both of those issues are under control with medication and Neocate formula. So far we've tried:
- Lying down with him
- Walkingn around with him
- Putting him in his Moses basket
- Putting him in the sling
- Putting him in a bouncer
- Given calpol just in case
- Infant massage
I've heard about babies with colic before, but experiencing a baby who screams hysterically and will not be calmed by anything for hours on end is genuinely horrific.
Any ideas as to what else I can try? What I could be missing? Or is it just a case of letting him crack on until he's finished? I'm reluctant to do the latter, but in a way it's what we've done anyway, not out of choice but because he just screams and screams no matter what we do to try and soothe him
I already took him to the hospital a few weeks ago because of this. I was worried he was really ill or something, but the paediatric consultant checked him over and said other than the reflux, he's is medically 100% healthy!
My oldest DS was a terrible. colicky sleeper too. Things which helped were taking him for a drive, taking him for a walk in his buggy, feeding only at regular intervals with gaps of at least 4 hours in between because lots of small bitty feeds make the colic worse and half a spoonful of gripe water which occasionally worked. However, ultimately you have to have faith that they they will grow out of this stage and work your way through it the best way for you.
Hard though it is, your DS needs to learn to settle and go to sleep and you need to plan for plenty of sleep and regular breaks. Your DP needs to step up and I'd suggest you actively look for support from family and friends. Even an hour where someone takes your child out for a walk is an hour when you can sleep or relax because a constantly crying child is very stressful.
Try a white noise machine, fan or a heart beat machine and then just harden your heart, close the door and let him learn to settle himself. You need sleep too. I'd recommend a white noise machine for you too. As he is so young I'd suggest a midnight feed to help him go through until 5. Make sure you smile and look relaxed as you put him down. What you are looking to do is train him that when he hears the noise it is sleep time.
Do you have the head of his bed propped up with books or blocks under the legs to help with the reflux?
Your list is pretty comprehensive, one thing that stopped my ds crying was a battery operated baby swing, it seemed to work like magic for the first few weeks we had it, it powers did wear off after a while but it then just grew out of screaming anyway. That swing saved my sanity.
We had positive results from cranial osteopathy, ranitidine
and shit loads of crying from us too
Is his reflux medication effective? If he's still screaming does it need adjusted? Omeprazole 10mg a day was what worked for us where ranitidine etc didn't.
What about a dummy?
Have you tried a swaddle?
DS1 had colic and it was horrendous. We tried every single 'remedy' going. But in the end, he outgrew it. The endless screaming for hours was draining in every sense and there were times we had to leave him to cry upstairs and come down for a break and a breather to calm down before we could go back to him. Don't feel awful for doing this warm baths sometimes helped and a walk in the evenings. Maybe try those of you haven't already? Otherwise, sorry but only time will help! They say colic passes around 12/13 weeks so you're nearly there. Sending hugs, I know it's bloody tough listening to the screaming
It sounds like you might need reflux meds adjusting.
If your DS is breastfed, could it be something you're eating?
All of mine have been screamers. And all dairy intolerant.
Anyway, when they are mid scream we had several things that would fix it (untile the next time)
1 go outside with the baby. Don't wrap up warm just get outside - if it's going to work it's almost instant my obvious.
2. A bath. May start screaming again when you take them out, but may also not.
3. Skin to skin.
They were the only things that worked.
we used to do foot massage - stroke the soles of the feet from heal to toes.
I feel your pain op. Ds wasn't as bad as yours but he certainly pushes me right to my limit at times. Things that work for DS when he used to do the scream till I'm blue in the face game:
Little pocket fan blowing on his face.
Taking him outside in the cold air
Taking him for epically long walks
Getting in the bath with him and pouring water over his back.
Battery operated swing.
He's 6 month now and the best thing to stop him screaming is one of those irritating light up toy things you get at concerts. He just gets mesmerised by it and forgets to cry.
I've had two. Things that worked: omeprazole, ranitidine ( both very weight sensitive and need adjusting biweekly), spacing feeds, keeping upright for 30 min after a feed, books under cot to elevate, walking outside at night in the carrier, white noise app, dark bathroom with the shower going, trying to keep asleep as much as possible,
Sorry to hear you're going through this. My DS screamed all day every day for nearly six months, awful time. For what it's worth, the things that worked for us were white noise app on most of the day (industrial fan setting), full therapeutic dose omeprazole, gripe water (apparently contains sodium bicarbonate which soothes reflux), baby Gaviscon and constant motion (many many walks). On the plus side, let me tell you with all the stress and walking you will lose any baby weight in no time, which is what happened to me! Also the dummy brought comfort sometimes. Nothing solved it but things helped a bit. I had to leave him crying sometimes for my own sanity. Hang in there x X
Sounds like reflux isn't under control. My DS had it and crying like you're describing was pain crying for him. If I were you I'd take him back to GP. It was infant gaviscon that gave my DS some relief. In the meantime I'd try keeping him upright and still after feeds for 30 mins with minimal winding. If it is reflux you want to try not to jolt him about too much as it's the acid coming out of their stomach that causes the pain. Then gently lower him down into cot to sleep. You have my sympathies though, reflux crying is at another level. Poor you and poor him.
Oh has anyone mentioned ear defenders or ear plugs yet? They just take the edge off, which makes you calmer, so makes the baby easier to calm. Ish. But it helps you anyway! We did a lot of pacing up and down stairs and around the garden wearing industrial ear defenders
Re: his reflux - initially we were given gaviscon which did absolutely nothing. It got to the point where DS was vomiting so much that when we eventually saw the paeds consultant, he examined him and said the acid had caused a lot of damage to his oesophagus
The only reason we saw a consultant in the first place was because DS would cry because he was hungry, I tried to feed him, he would take two or three sucks of a bottle, then be screaming and arching in pain he didn't feed properly for 8 hours, so I rang my GP who said to take him straight to A&E to be seen. I got to the hospital, DS screaming and refusing feeds the entire time (about 3 hours waiting in a&e) and was eventually taken up to the children's ward. The first Dr I saw kept telling me it was the CMPA and he needed a different formula (was already on extensively hydrolysed prescription formula) and wouldn't listen to me when I described his reflux symptoms DS still hadn't fed and was still screaming 11 hours later, so I had a meltdown and refused to take him home until someone helped him That's when the paediatric consultant came in. I was attempting to feed DS again at that point, so the consultant got to observe his feeding behaviour and reflux symptoms for himself. He agreed with me that CMPA was part of DS problem, but the reflux was severe. He didn't hesitate to prescribe omeprazole and Neocate (amino-acid based formula). Since being on that combination, DS is like a different baby!! Feeds without any problems majority of the time, burps easily now, minimal amounts of posseting and no more horrendous screaming at feeding time.
The only time he has these episodes is in the evening, but even then he feeds fine which makes me think it's not the reflux that's causing it.
He does have a dummy, but when he gets going, it's as if he doesn't stop crying and close his mouth long enough to realise his dummy is in his mouth We also use white noise.
When the screaming stops (usually around 10pm), he sleeps like a dream during the night, only waking for feeds and straight back down again.
You poor thing OP. That sounds awful. And fair play to you for standing your ground in the hospital.
Do you think it could be lower level reflux problems. In my experience, my DS would feed OK, but then start crying 30-60 mins later and go straight from happy to serious pain crying instantly. From what I understood at the time this is when the stomach starts to digest the food and some acid can be pushed out (silent reflux). I kept him upright and still. Or put him in an upright position in the buggy and rocked it back and forth over a ridge between the porch and the lounge.
You'll find something that works for him. And at least nights aren't too bad. And the other thing to remember is they grow out of reflux when the sphincter on their stomach develops properly, so it won't last forever. For my DS it just stopped happening overnight at about 5 months old. Good luck OP.
Gosh that must be so stressful for you my ds1 was a screamer. The kitchen extractor fan helped us no end (white noise).
Later on it turned out that he had a milk allergy too so had I realised and changed my diet that might have helped. I will never know!
Best of luck and just keep thinking 'this, too, shall pass'!
That now sounds like overstimulation. Try having a really quiet boring day with a lot of time in a sling and see if that makes a difference?
My eldest was like that. I remember when DS2 was tiny finding it strange that he had a range of cries (DS1 went from nothing to full on screaming). I remember DH and I taking it in turns every evening walking him around the city in a sling from about 6-10/11pm. It was horrendous. It got better aged 4 months or so.
Put him in the Pam and go outside for a long walk. Sometimes it'll work.
Both of mine had this uncontrollable evening screaming. It was horrible. Bath followed by skin to skin in a dark room with white noise blasting directly into their ears would sometimes put a dent in it. If really bad, getting into the bath with them helped also. They were both breastfed so I'd stick a boob in as well, but you could add the dummy to bath plus skin to skin to cover all bases perhaps? What a PP said earlier as well about keeping him asleep as much as possible during the day - ensure he's never awake for longer than 45 minutes at a time.
Oh bless you this sounds awful for you all!
My DD has reflux... or had I'm not sure whether it's fully gone now (15months). We found omeprazole worked initially and we thought wow different baby...but then the symptoms returned and so we were swapped to max dose lanzoprezole which genuinely did worked and continued to do so for the best part of a year (we have tentatively stopped now). It could be worth asking to try that to see if it helps.
We had 2-4 hours of screaming every evening until I can't remember what age , several times I was close to taking her to the dr I was so worried. In the end the paeds we saw recommended probiotics. We used Biogaia which you buy online as that was what was recommended.
The crying stopped about a week later never to return. I am fully aware it could just be coincidence and that is when her colic or whatever it was wojld have stopped anyway but..... I will never know. We had tried literally everything you could possibly buy for colic and every remedy suggested... so maybe it did help!!!
I personally wouldn't leave a baby of that age to cry by himself and learn to settle. He's only tiny!!!
Hope you find something that helps xxxx
No fear - I will not be leaving him to cry!! He's 9 weeks old! I have never left my 19 month old DD to cry, and don't intend to do it with DS either
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