Why Do Babies Cry?

Asking why babies cry is like asking why the sun shines. The plain and simple fact of the matter is that babies are going to cry. In fact, crying is very often an important tool that babies have, and often the only way to communicate a need. If a baby did not cry, parents and caregivers would have to spend a lot more time examining their baby for problems, and keeping strict records of things like bowel movements and feedings. it is estimated that a healthy newborn will cry at least an hour a day, maybe as much as three hours a day.

Crying is a baby’s way of communicating something to you. As such, the common reasons babies cry usually have to do with a felt need. For example, one of the most common reasons babise cry is because they are hungry. The younger the baby is, the more likely it is that crying means that the baby is hungry. If your baby is crying but has already been fed, or does not take a bottle or breast when it is offered, there may be another reason the baby is crying.

A second common reason babies cry is because they are uncomfortable. Very often, it means that their diaper is full. Some babies will cry with a wet diaper; other babies won’t cry unless they have had a bowel movement. Other babies don’t seem to mind a full diaper. Checking to see if your baby’s diaper is full is generally the next step when trying to figure out why a baby is crying.

Being too cold or too hot is another common reason babies cry. Babies need to be warm. When a baby is a newborn especially a baby may not be used to feeling the air on their skin, and might prefer to be wrapped up nice and warm. Babies need to typically be one “layer” of clothing warmer than you are. If you are in jeans and a t-shirt, the baby probably needs to be in heavier pants and a sweatshirt-type of a top, or at least covered up with a blanket.

There are other common reasons babies cry, as well. Some babies may cry if they need to be cuddled or if they need to be reassured. Many babies need that close physical touch from you, and may just need to see your face. Other babies may cry when they are sleepy, or overstimulated. Most babies will also cry when they don’t feel well, such as when they have been injured or if they have a cold or illness.