Crying Time

Baby Crying Time / Witching Hour –  a contribution from Simone, childbirth educator and our guest author from Maternal Journey

The clock ticks 4pm and your contented wee newborn all of a sudden turns into an inconsolable, feeding incessantly, windy soul, who seems to have taken over the body of your peaceful baby!

You ask yourself, “What am I doing wrong”, “Surely you can’t be hungry again, if I keep feeding you and going with your ‘demands’ you will most certainly become one of those kids from the ‘super nanny’ show.  You seem tired to me, no hungry, no it’s wind!”

Welcome to the Witching Hours.  The hours in which your newborn knows no more of what she wants than you do.

One moment she is hungry, then she’s asleep, then awake screaming, then feeding again, asleep at last, no up again – it must be wind!

The night progresses along this path until eventually at 9, 10 or 12 your unsettled, windy, inconsolable baby, finally (you hope) plummets into a deep sleep.

You rack your brain about what foods you’ve eaten, what you’ll do differently tomorrow.

Parents have spoken of the ‘witching hours’ the hours in which parents just manage, do what they can to help their newborn and themselves through this challenging time.

There are many theories about why some baby’s experience this, some say over stimulation, wind, overtiredness, hungry or even an immature central nervous system.  It really is about going with your baby at this time

  • feed her when she asks for food
  • cuddle
  • rock
  • sway
  • pat her
  • sing
  • hold her in the ‘colic hold’ (baby on her belly across your forearm)
  • a warm bath and a massage before it starts
  • and making sure dinner or any other jobs are sorted earlier in the day so you can relax and go with it.

This is most certainly a newborn stage, your baby will pass through it.

Though when your children get older they will start whinging for food around this time anyway!