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Why the screaming?

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

I have a nine-week-old that loves to be held constantly and seems to enjoy being worn.  But when she wakes up in the carrier, she breaks my ear drums with her screams.  Frequently if I just jiggle her around, she falls right back asleep.  But I still worry that she's in pain.  She never screams like that when she wakes up from sleeping if she's not in the carrier.  Is this normal?  Does anyone have an explanation for why a baby would do this?

post #2 of 12

Can you post pictures or describe what carry and carrier you are using?

post #3 of 12
Thread Starter 

Thanks!  I don't have pictures, but it is a mei tai from Ellaroo.  I'm using the front carry with her facing in toward me.  I froggy her legs and check that her feet aren't being twisted.  Sorry for the brevity, I'm nursing while typing.

post #4 of 12

I just finished reading the Happiest Baby On the Block by Dr Harvey Karp and it could be that your little one is just extra sensitive to waking up. Some babies don't handle the transition between sleeping and waking as well as others. Does she cry upon waking at any other time or just in the carrier? The fact that jiggling calms her (one of the calming methods he recommends in the book) points to the fact that there may not be anything wrong with what you are doing.....it could very well be just a characteristic of your baby right now. She may also have a bit of insecurity upon waking.


If you are concerned, double check your hold and make sure she's very snug in the carrier; little ones love to be super-snug. I used a stretchy wrap when my babies were that age because I could cocoon them nice and tight. I personally prefer the mei tai for older babies. If you don't have the money to invest in a Moby wrap you can go to your local fabric store and buy five to six yards of stretchy material (cotton knit or poly knit work, with polyester knit being the more economical). Cut it in half down the middle and you have two slings.


I wore my babies constantly as well and even though my youngest in particular loved it she would still fuss in the carrier at times.


Hope some of this helps.



post #5 of 12
Thread Starter 

Thank you!  She does cry when waking generally, but not as loudly as when in the carrier.  Of course, she can then fall back asleep in the carrier, which she doesn't usually do if she's fallen asleep elsewhere.


I think you're right about the snugness. I have a moby but had not yet tried it because it looks so complicated.  After reading your suggestions, I tried using that, and she was snugger and seemed very happy.  So I'll give that a go for now.  Thanks again!

post #6 of 12

When you go to wrap with the Moby tie it to you very tight your body, think like a t-shirt that is very snug. If your using the hug hold carry your looking for it to stretch to accomodate baby vs putting baby into it and not having the fabric stretch either a little bit or not at all. The tighter the better as it offers the most support when it has to stretch a lot to hold baby.

Good luck and happy baby wearing!

post #7 of 12
Thread Starter 

Will do!  Thank you!

post #8 of 12

Actually, Ksenia, your baby is very likely signaling that she needs to use the bathroom and doesn't want to do it on your or in the sling. When sleeping on the bed, she might feel okay peeing in her diaper or might have a different signal, but most babies cue VERY clearly in the sling that they need *out* in order to do their business otherwhere's than in the sling, on you, on themselves. If you haven't heard about EC, perhaps check it out. Even if you ONLY offered your baby a potty opportunity when she wakes up in the sling, you could at least help her not feel that she needs to scream so loudly and could simultaneously take care of one of her needs. In the Elimination Communication (Infant Potty Training) world, what your baby is doing is (I'm 99% sure) telling you she needs to pee! : o ) (Babies are born with the instinct to not soil themselves, their caregivers, or their beds {/slings!}....your baby is still within a very sensitive-to-this-instinct window and if you wanted to start some form, even part-time of EC, now, it'd be a good time to experiment!)


A position you could try for a 9 week old: turn baby away from you and gently hold her little thighs in your hands, with her back resting on your torso (do not hold her away from your body in this position, it feels unsafe), give a verbal cue (the sound "pssss" or "ssss" is used around the world) as you are holding her in this position over a sink, toilet, or squat with her over the ground or shower, locking her in safely between your legs. Be sure she is warm and feels secure. Let me know if you need other thoughts on positioning, if you choose to try this out. :)


Hope this helps unravel one of the many mysteries that come with new little ones.....let me know what happens if you end up trying it out.


post #9 of 12
Thread Starter 

Wow, Andrea, that is fascinating!  I didn't know babies had that instinct, although I very clearly saw that instinct in action when my dog was a puppy.  I will go read up on EC.

post #10 of 12

Awesome! Glad to help! I haven't made any videos yet on what it looks like when a baby signals in a sling but you're inspiring me to film one. :) I'll be interested to hear what happens.....!

post #11 of 12

My DS used to do this all the time, scream when he woke up in a sling/wrap because he had to pee (he doesn't sleep when worn any more).

post #12 of 12
I don't know anything about EC, but that sounds fascinating.... Definitely worth investigating to see if that helps her.

I was thinking that maybe she cries more on waking in the carrier b/c she's waking upright instead of lying down, and she could be disoriented. DS used to do that when he was a baby. He'd be fine sleeping in his crib, wake crying but sootheable. If he fell asleep on me and then woke up there, he'd freak out.
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