The Best Tips for Dad to Soothe a Crying Baby
Sooner or later, new mums are going to have to venture out solo, to get your hair done, do some shopping, or just grab a quiet coffee with friends. Also, you may want to leave baby at home with Dad for a few hours, to give yourself a ‘break’ so to speak, and also to allow Dad to have some one on one time with baby.
But Dad’s, what are you going to do when invariably, the going gets tough! Baby starts to tear up, she starts to scream, and you’re getting stressed out because you’ve tried everything you know to stop the crying a repertoire which took the best part of a minute to complete).
Let’s add to that repertoire with these 11 tips!
1. Keep Calm, Stay Open
If one technique fails to yield a result, stay calm and move on to the next one. Trial and error and a little experimentation will be required, as each little baby is different will respond accordingly.
When all seems to be failing, colic could be the culprit, most common in babies between the ages of 3 to 12 weeks.
2. What’s the Problem?
“First, find the source of the pain,” says David Templeton, father of two in Branford, Connecticut. | www.babycenter.com
Logical, yes. Common, no. Try to figure out what exactly could be wrong. Hunger, dirty diaper, over stimulated, tired… look for the tell tale signs.
3. Pinky Hankering
I learnt this one in the hospital from one of the midwives. Baby’s crying out of control, with clean hands, allow your baby to suck on your knuckle or pinky finger. It’s a classic technique that for me at least, seems to work every time!
4. Time for a Beverage
Not for you.
If you’re solo with baby, of course you should have some formula or breast milk ready to roll. Give it a shot.
5. Cradle Rock
“Babies love movement — and who better to swing them around than Daddy? “When my daughter started to cry, I would swing her back and forth in her infant car seat,” says Eric Rimm, father of one in Boston. | www.babycenter.com
I like to gently swing and rock my baby in my arms, “shhhhing” and making soothing, white noise style sounds. The movement and sound will typically work most of the time.
6. Dorky Dad
No one around but baby? She’s the perfect critic for your personal stunt portfolio and physical comedy show!
“Bodily function noises. Horrific contorted faces. Spontaneous belly flops onto the nearest soft surface. Finally, there’s a positive outlet for the physical gags you’ve practiced since childhood. | www.babycenter.com
Whilst gently swaying baby, try singing softly to her and moving to the tune. I’d opt for slow tunes like “You are so beautiful” or anything by Ray Charles, and less from the likes of Ke$ha or Nicki Minaj.
8. Baby Wear
Whack on your front carrier and walk around.
“Between the warmth of your body, the rhythmic beating of your heart, the somniferous rise and fall of your breathing, and the gentle swaying motion as you walk, at least one of you should be asleep in minutes.” | www.babycenter.com
9. Midnight Run
When all else fails, hit the road, Jack.
Babies typically love the motion and bumps of a car ride, and go straight to sleep, resembling the bumpy and noisy environment in mom’s tummy. It’s a little bit of a mission, so keep it for a last resort.
10. Get some Fresh Air
When my little one in screaming, there is one absolute failsafe, particularly in the summer months. Just take her outside to get some fresh air on her face. She usually calms right down, at least for the immediate future.
11. Bath Time
Another soothing exercise. The warm water will hopefully be very soothing and distracting, and she gets a little clean at the same time. However, make sure you’re already solo bathing proficient before attempting this feat with no one else around.