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#1 of 58 Old 03-17-2011, 07:36 PM - Thread Starter
 
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We just brought our daughter home last week :) She is now 5 weeks old. The first couple of days she mostly slept, but starting on day 3 or so the crying started... she seems worse at night but is starting to fuss alot during the daytime hours as well. Holding doesn't seem to help, nor does putting her in a sling or wrap. I know her basic needs are met (food, diaper, right temp, etc) but I am at a loss as to what to do next.

 

Does anyone else out there have a baby that cries a lot? What do you do? Any tips? Support? Thank you!


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#2 of 58 Old 03-17-2011, 08:07 PM
 
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Congrats!

 

My DD is very high needs and literally cried (screamed really) for 4+ hrs a day for like 6 months. It was absolute hell. Nothing made her stop screaming--nothing. All I could do was keep holding her, wearing her, and nursing her. I just survived through it. We were a unique case though b/c it turned out it was all a reactions to vaccines...but I did go on an elimination diet to see if it would help. Just cut out the basics like dairy and soy all hidden as well. See if that helps at all after a few weeks. Are her poops normal looking?


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#3 of 58 Old 03-17-2011, 09:46 PM
 
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I would try The Happiest Baby on the Block! Worked like a charm for us.

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#4 of 58 Old 03-18-2011, 12:06 PM
 
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what was the reason for you only bringing her home last week? was she in the NICU?

 

 

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#5 of 58 Old 03-18-2011, 12:26 PM
 
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what was the reason for you only bringing her home last week? was she in the NICU?

 

 


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#6 of 58 Old 03-18-2011, 03:43 PM
 
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Yes, our ds cried a lot in the beginning, many times he was inconsolable. Some things that seemed to help (after all the usual things) were going in the bathroom with the loud shower on, taking him onto our front porch and watching loud traffic go by, bouncing on excercise ball and watching television, and holding him skin to fur with our dog...we are so lucky to have the most patient and trustworthy dog ever!

Try not to take the crying personally. I know that it is hard not to, but I am sure you are a great parent. It's okay to pass her off when you reach your limits. My husband and I had nights when we would go back and forth with him every few minutes. And if there is no one around put her somewhere safe and take a minute to breathe!

I remember being so frustrated when ds was a few weeks old by strangers that all said "enjoy him now" when we were seriously struggling. Also, I feel like all my friends have easy babies, so I wasn't really expecting it to be so difficult. You will get through it though. And you will look back at all the sweet pictures of your newborn baby sleeping and miss the days when they were so tiny. Congrats on bringing her home smile.gif
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#7 of 58 Old 03-18-2011, 03:58 PM
 
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My DS was a miserable infant. He cried for four months, and it was awful. What we've figured out, in hindsight, is that he wasn't sleeping enough, especially during the day. He was horribly overtired, almost all the time, because he could only sleep on my body, and I had another baby (his twin) and a two year old. So he wasn't getting enough sleep. The other thing we realized is that he's just an intense child--- even now, he's my most needy child. He's sensitive, he's easily startled, he needs a lot more physical contact and affection and attention, and things just upset him more. I think we were seeing that intensity manifest itself right from the beginning.

I would think about sleep first of all, honestly. So often newborn fussiness seems to be related to an overwhelmed, overtired infant. Have you tried a sleep routine? That's not a schedule, and it's not cry-it-out or anything-- it just means that 60 to 90 minutes after baby wakes, you start trying for another nap-- however you normally get baby to sleep. You're trying for no more than 90 minutes awake at a time, with one longer period of about two hours, late in the day, especially as baby nears four months old. It made a huge difference for us, once we figured it out.

Another thing that helped us was reducing daytime stimulation. Have you tried wearing baby early in the day, before the fussing even starts? It can really help, especially if you're on your feet and moving around during that time. Long, steady walks outdoors, in a carrier, early in the day, was our best solution. The more they sleep, and spend soothed, early in the day, the less likely they are to finish the day a miserable mess. In fact, the outdoors was our solution to most fussiness-- one of my best strategies was to take DS for long walks after dinner, in the fresh air, before bedtime. He calmed down a lot outdoors.

And hug2.gif because living with a fussy infant can be so hard. Hang in there-- it does get better quickly. The peak of infant fussiness is about six weeks, and for non-colicky babies it declines quickly after that. For "colicky" babies, the situation seems to improve late in the third month. So though it seems like an eternity now, it really does go so fast.
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#8 of 58 Old 03-18-2011, 04:57 PM - Thread Starter
 
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thankyou SO MUCH everyone for the encouraging words and support. With this baby girl I almost feel like a first time mom again instead of a third time mom! LOL!

 

Dd was born early but only spent a couple of weeks in the nicu. We are an adoptive family, which explains the delay in her coming home. It also explains why she is formula/bottle fed, which adds another complication in the mix as to whether she is tolerating her formula well and/if we should switch to something else dizzy.gif

 

the crying started in the evenings about 3 days after she came home, and every day it has been increasing in intensity, and going on during the day as well. She seems to be generally unhappy during the time she is awake if she is not eating. Going for walks (usually in a wrap but I have even tried a stroller) does help but she will cry for the first ten minutes or so, and then again when I get back home and stop walking. I was worried about her, so I took her to our pediatrician today and his best idea was colic; he said she might have reflux but it doesn't seem as likely as colic. We are also going to try a lactose free formula to see if it helps.

 

Its tough; I waited so long for this precious little one and now that she is home she seems so unhappy :(


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#9 of 58 Old 03-18-2011, 05:01 PM
 
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I have some experience with reflux with my daughter. Hers was "silent reflux," as she didn't spit up, but I could hear her burping up and swallowing milk back down. Anyway, what helped was:

 

  • Only feeding at an incline, no flat laying
  • Wearing her upright after eating (this helped her burp too)
  • Sleeping at an incline. Again, no flat laying

 

Hopefully that will help your girl too! And again, I would check out "The Happiest Baby on the Block;" even if it's not colic, the tips in the book can really help!


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#10 of 58 Old 03-18-2011, 05:38 PM
 
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Originally Posted by sesa70 View Post

thankyou SO MUCH everyone for the encouraging words and support. With this baby girl I almost feel like a first time mom again instead of a third time mom! LOL!

 

Dd was born early but only spent a couple of weeks in the nicu. We are an adoptive family, which explains the delay in her coming home. It also explains why she is formula/bottle fed, which adds another complication in the mix as to whether she is tolerating her formula well and/if we should switch to something else dizzy.gif

 

the crying started in the evenings about 3 days after she came home, and every day it has been increasing in intensity, and going on during the day as well. She seems to be generally unhappy during the time she is awake if she is not eating. Going for walks (usually in a wrap but I have even tried a stroller) does help but she will cry for the first ten minutes or so, and then again when I get back home and stop walking. I was worried about her, so I took her to our pediatrician today and his best idea was colic; he said she might have reflux but it doesn't seem as likely as colic. We are also going to try a lactose free formula to see if it helps.

 

Its tough; I waited so long for this precious little one and now that she is home she seems so unhappy :(



I gave birth to my DD but she was still ABSOLUTELY MISERABLE the first 6 months of her life! I am sure you are doing great! Try not to worry!

 

As far as bottles go have you tried those insert things to stop gas or w/e my friend FF and swears by those.


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#11 of 58 Old 03-19-2011, 08:07 AM
 
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My LO just turned 6 weeks and at 5 weeks she started with the fussing and crying. Guess what... IT GETS BETTER, YAY!!. It's the 6 week fussiness peak. It just means that your baby is becoming more alert and it overwhelms them at about 5-6 weeks. My LO started this peak with unconsolable crying for 5 hours that ended with us at the ER because I was sooo sure something was wrong. She turned out to be fine and about 10 days later the fussiness turned off as fast as it had come on. I've heard it described as their alertness going from wearing sunglasses at night to watching and IMAX movie and it just takes a little while for them to get use to. I'm sure they might even get headaches and just feel all around stressed. But like I said it gets better. Good luck!


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#12 of 58 Old 03-19-2011, 10:36 AM
 
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We have had lots of bouts of fussines and crying too, we are at 5 weeks now.

 

Here is what helped us;

 

I avoid dairy, so the food thing really seems to make a difference, maybe a different formula will help.

 

Keeping her upright, carrying her over my shoulder, bouncing her. Sometimes when she is fussy at night I lay in bed with my knees up and lay her on my thighs (so she is sitting upright) and kind of bounce and jiggle my hips while holding her there.

 

Really spending a lot of effort to get her burped after eating!

 

She also loves her baby swing, it took several attempts before she learned to like it, but now it is a sure fire bet to calm her down if you can get her into it before she falls off the deep end of crying.

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#13 of 58 Old 03-20-2011, 04:44 PM
 
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We have had lots of bouts of fussines and crying too, we are at 5 weeks now.

 

Here is what helped us;

 

I avoid dairy, so the food thing really seems to make a difference, maybe a different formula will help.

 

Keeping her upright, carrying her over my shoulder, bouncing her. Sometimes when she is fussy at night I lay in bed with my knees up and lay her on my thighs (so she is sitting upright) and kind of bounce and jiggle my hips while holding her there.

 

Really spending a lot of effort to get her burped after eating!

 

She also loves her baby swing, it took several attempts before she learned to like it, but now it is a sure fire bet to calm her down if you can get her into it before she falls off the deep end of crying.

 

I agree with the good amount of burping helps and also over-the-shoulder. That seems to help with fussiness or as we call it...the end of the day blues (or the morning blues, or the I just woke up blues...haha).
 

 


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#14 of 58 Old 03-21-2011, 05:38 AM
 
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OP- J/W do you know anything about who birthed her? Was she on drugs or smoked? The withdrawal can cause immense fussiness. Not saying her fussiness isn't completely normal b/c I think it is, but am just saying that could make it worse and she may settle down in a few more weeks.


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#15 of 58 Old 03-21-2011, 05:58 AM
 
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hug.gif. Definitely get her on a lactose- or maybe even dairy-free formula and see if that helps.

Otherwise it could just be normal colic. My baby was also a colic baby. It is so, so hard! I know the helplessness and frustration and heartbreak when there's nothing that will comfort them. I think the best thing I can tell you is just hang in there, it WILL get better and one day it'll be totally gone. With my DS it took about four months. He's still pretty high needs, but that newborn screaming phase did indeed end.

Also what helped us was cutting back on stimulation. We spent most of the summer (he was born late May) in a dark room just rocking him. It did seem to help a little to just keep everything cool, calm and quiet. The only place we went was on walks until he was about 3.5 months. I know that's not practical when you've got other kids, but as much as possible I would not bring her out and about yet.

Remember: this will pass!

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#16 of 58 Old 03-21-2011, 06:09 AM
 
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My daughter is 5 weeks today and has been a very fussy baby as well. I took her to the ped last week and it turns out she was suffering from reflux. She would just scream, and she was obviously in pain...just a gut wrenching screech. The ped confirmed reflux and she's been on zantac since Thursday...completely different baby! I've also made a few changes to my diet (breastfeeding), and that's helped some with her tummy. Hope you get her situated soon, and congrats!!


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#17 of 58 Old 03-21-2011, 07:39 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you everyone for the support. This has been a really hard road. After the ped on friday we tried the lactose free milk, and some of the behaviors seemed to have changed. They hysterical crying seems to have gone for the most part; she will cry like that when in her carseat or last night for about 10 minutes before a bowl movement. generally the screaming cry seems more appropriate instead of constant. But now, instead we are seeing a general underlying miserable-ness that is constant. She is never happy, never content. Always wiggly, restless, thrashing, flailing, scrunching up her legs, crying (but not the hysterical crying more of a low level whiney cry if that makes sense) sort of always on the verge behaviors. Even when she is content (ish!) like in a carrier or on my lap, she will suddenly move an arm or \scrunch up and get upset again. I think these behaviors were always there, just hidden under the more obvious \crying.

 

It has been really hard on all of us, and I am having scary flashbacks to my older dd who has severe special needs and was the most miserable infant on the planet. My mommy intuition is screaming that something is wrong here, and i am hoping and praying that it is nothing serious/severe because I don't think our family could take another child with those kinds of needs. I am really nervous/terrified here, and I have this knot in the pit of my stomach. I don't know what is going on but I do feel something is wrong, and I am more than a little freaked out right now.

 

ETA: Her birthmother was healthy, and took very good care of herself the entire pregnancy.


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#18 of 58 Old 03-21-2011, 09:20 AM
 
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My DS was not an easy baby, but he was happy tucked in a certain spot under my chin while I was walking.  Anyone or anything else and he was not happy.  For us, eliminating dairy made a HUGE difference. 

 

Also, EC was important to him - he was very aware of when he needed to go to the bathroom and he was frustrated and then upset if he had to go and we didn't get him to the potty- I know for a lot of people that sounds odd, but I can mention it on MDC, right? :) 

 

Lastly - it was either 6 or 8 weeks that is supposed to be the peak of newborn fussiness - I don't remember.  I DO remember that it was soo sooo true for him.  I thought my brain was going to explode and then he got past that age and things were better enough to handle.

 

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#19 of 58 Old 03-21-2011, 09:21 AM
 
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Don't change the formula at this point. You really don't have enough to go on. Was she drug exposed? Alcohol exposed? What does your pediatrician say?

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#20 of 58 Old 03-21-2011, 09:31 AM
 
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You may need to think about at some point cutting out ALL dairy, not just lactose/milk.  Also, has she been seen by a chiropractor and/or craniosacral therapist?  Those could help also.


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#21 of 58 Old 03-21-2011, 09:31 AM - Thread Starter
 
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No drugs, no alcohol. No other risk factors... basically bmom took very good care of herself during pregnancy. She was born early, estimated 32-34 weeks (one hospital document says 36 weeks, so basically we don't know for sure)

 

Our pediatrician thought colic was most likely, possibly reflux. She is just not fitting the pattern for either. With colic, her miserableness is constant, not just at certain points throughout the day. Any time she is awake, she is like that. Its not just screaming crying either, its the restless uncomfortableness I mentioned in my last post :( Really I am at a loss.

 

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Don't change the formula at this point. You really don't have enough to go on. Was she drug exposed? Alcohol exposed? What does your pediatrician say?



 


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#22 of 58 Old 03-21-2011, 09:32 AM - Thread Starter
 
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How could I do that with a ff baby? Go to a soy based milk? I have heard so many bad things about soy...

 

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You may need to think about at some point cutting out ALL dairy, not just lactose/milk.  Also, has she been seen by a chiropractor and/or craniosacral therapist?  Those could help also.



 


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#23 of 58 Old 03-21-2011, 09:45 AM
 
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 She is never happy, never content. Always wiggly, restless, thrashing, flailing, scrunching up her legs, crying (but not the hysterical crying more of a low level whiney cry if that makes sense) sort of always on the verge behaviors. Even when she is content (ish!) like in a carrier or on my lap, she will suddenly move an arm or \scrunch up and get upset again. I think these behaviors were always there, just hidden under the more obvious \crying.

My kids did this if they weren't swaddled tightly.  We swaddled for a really long time....

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#24 of 58 Old 03-21-2011, 10:11 AM
 
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Sesa70, have you thought of using the colic advice in "The Happiest Baby on the Block"? The 5 S's in that book are really life savers for fussy babies. Sometimes a combination of just a couple works well for some babies, for others they need all 5, but with a little trial-and-error, they can be really, really helpful.


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#25 of 58 Old 03-21-2011, 10:53 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I have never read/watched the happiest baby on the block, but I am going to go to the library this afternoon and pick it up.

 

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Sesa70, have you thought of using the colic advice in "The Happiest Baby on the Block"? The 5 S's in that book are really life savers for fussy babies. Sometimes a combination of just a couple works well for some babies, for others they need all 5, but with a little trial-and-error, they can be really, really helpful.



 


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#26 of 58 Old 03-21-2011, 12:39 PM
 
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sorry mama! hugs ((())) to you!  knowing your baby is not content is soo frustrating!  have you considered getting an adjustment from a chiropractor?  or doing craniosacral work for her?  these were both recommended to me by my midwives and other mamas.  i think doing both helped with my ds--sometimes the birth process is hard on their nervous systems--chirpractic can help.  it is very subtle--ds is now almost 4 months and i take him about 1x-2x/month.  the craniosacral helps also--sometimes babies cranial bones can give them headaches or their entire body just is out of whack and wants/longs to be back in the cozy comfort of the womb....the website icpa4kids.org was useful for me.  also i took an infant massage class while pg---lovingtouch.com....i also find baths are very soothing at calming the baby  and i've been using a homeopathic colic/gripe water formula that seems to help.  www.coliccalm.com

 

 

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#27 of 58 Old 03-21-2011, 01:53 PM
 
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My DD1 was pretty much like what you're describing - 'a miserable uncomfortableness'.  She was *never* happy as a baby.  I rarely saw her smile and she pretty much never laughed.  Mostly just crying - sometimes screaming, sometimes just fussing.  I tried all the usual tricks, and, sorry to say, didn't find a single thing that really helped.

 

The only thing that did help was time.  LOTS of time.  Now at 3 she's much happier.  Still an intense and spirited kid, but much much more comfortable in herself.  We theorised that she was just miserable as a baby.  She really badly wanted to be able to do more - and as time went by and she achieved more and more milestones she gradually relaxed into herself a bit more.  The more she was able to do, the better she seemed to feel.  And she was *driven* to achieve those milestones as early as possible - rolling over both ways at just a few weeks, full on crawling at 4 months, pulling up to stand before 6 months, cruising at 7 months and walking just before 9 months.  Around about a year I noticed that she had turned a corner in terms of happiness - she had baby signs to communicate, and was able to do most of the physical things she wanted to do, so she settled down a lot.

 

So, that's just something else to consider.  Definitely try all the other tricks being suggested, but it could just be her personality.  (BTW - is there a possibility she could be gifted? Any gifties in her birth family?  I've heard that behaviour like that is sometimes connected to giftedness, and with our DD it might be the case.  Could it be with yours too?)

 

But if your gut instinct is telling you that something's wrong then follow that too - bring her to the doc, have her evaluated and take it from there.

 

:hug  It's really hard to have a miserable baby, but you aren't doing anything wrong. :hug


Lisa - mama to Eleanor Rose 01/08 and Saoirse Lily 09/10
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#28 of 58 Old 03-21-2011, 02:23 PM
 
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posting to come back later-- my son is/was v. fussy (no, I did not take drugs during pregnancy). There was nothing wrong with him... just demanding. will post more later.


Texmati-- Knitter, Hindu, vegetarian, WOHM. Wife to superdadsuperhero.gif and mom to DS babyf.gif24 months, and DD boc.gif 8 months! .

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#29 of 58 Old 03-21-2011, 04:16 PM
 
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A few things (as a fellow adoptive mother of a newborn... and foster mother to several others  :)  ).

 

Unless you knew the mother personally and were involved with her during her pregnancy--I really wouldn't rule ANYthing out.  Honestly.

 

You're right to be concerned about switching to soy formula because 80-85% of the babies that react to dairy protein will also negatively react to soy.  That leaves you with Alimentum or Nutramigen; and for kids who have more serious intolerance, Neocate or Elicare (I think Elicare is the other--we always used Neocate for those babies).  If there is mucous in her diaper, that's a pretty significant indication of food reaction--but absence of mucous (or blood) in the dipe doesn't mean that it's NOT a food issue.  Once you start any new formula, you're likely to see improvement for the first few days.  Don't assume that means that formula is okay.  The crime is that it could take 2 weeks for them to show their true colors on that formula and then you have another week of enduring it just to make sure it's related to formula.  One of the babies we had was an absolute nightmare with this (I felt so horrible for her).

 

If the baby was premature (and it sounds like that's possible) then all of the natural things that we do with new babies could be significantly overstimulating her.  All that lovey looking into the faces, etc.... music, lights, etc.  These could all be REALLY upsetting and unfortunately--a day of that pretty much guarantees a miserable night as they try to unwind.

 

Last, not every baby enjoys, or even tolerates swaddling or babywearing.  And you'll have to try to find out.  My own bioson couldn't tolerate swaddling if his arms were inside, but was great from underarms down.  

 

CONGRATULATIONS!!!!  My ad is now 2-1/2yo and pulling onions out of my fridge as I type.  :) 


Heather - Wife , Mommy  & Health & Wellness Educator, Speaker & Consultant 
 
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#30 of 58 Old 03-21-2011, 05:19 PM
 
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My guess is NICU/prematurity angle. My now 11 yo spent a few weeks in NICU and he was such a miserable, unhappy, inconsolable baby unless he was eating until about 4 mos of age. He cried A LOT A LOT A LOT. I know that doesn't help you much, but just know that it will get better!

 

With him, I found less was more. All the 'things' I tried to calm/soothe him just seemed to ratchet him up. I think it was overstimulation of his partly preemie nervous system. My son was born at what the doc though was 36-38w but the NICU said he acted more like a 32-34 weeker. Keeping the house calm, quiet, and low lights helped. Feeding, holding, and a little rocking. Happiest baby on the block (I am familiar with it) would not have helped my ds as it would have been too much noise/movement. The one thing (other than eating) that did calm him a bit was a realllly vibraty bouncy seat. He also really, really enjoyed water--shower or bath. And he's a big water kid still! He can spend hour upon hour in the lake/pool/sprinkler.

 

So, it's not just you! You can birth a fussy, unhappy baby too! Get support, get away from her a few moments each day so you can decompress.


~Mama to my boys~ to a teen, a tween & a toddler and surro-mama to twins and their sister

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