Crying, Age 3 and Younger (cont.)
IN THIS ARTICLE
Check Your Symptoms
Crying is a normal part of your child's life. Stay as calm as possible during crying episodes. There are many different ways to approach your child's crying, and over time you will understand your child's needs and know how to care for him or her.
It may be helpful to keep a record of your child's crying to see whether there is a pattern that you can discuss with your child's doctor.
Checklist of common reasons a child cries
Use this checklist to help you figure out the reason for your child's crying and take action to eliminate the cause of the crying. Remember that the crying may be normal for your child. Ask yourself whether your child:
Illness or injury that may cause a child to cry
Young children may turn red or purple in the face when crying. A sick child may have pale, blue, or spots of bluish (mottled) skin and may be listless, unusually sleepy, or irritable. A sick child's cry may be weak and feeble or (rarely) high-pitched and piercing. If you think your child may be sick or hurt:
If you do not find a reason for your child's crying, try comforting techniques. Many doctors recommend trying this easy-to-remember "5 Ss" (swaddling, side or stomach position in your arms, shushing, swinging, and sucking) method. Wrap (swaddle) your baby in a blanket, swing him or her gently while on the side or stomach in your arms, use the shushing sound, and give the baby something to suck. If your child continues to cry after you have tried home treatment, place him or her in a safe, quiet place and leave him or her alone for 15 to 20 minutes. Sometimes children can relax and soothe themselves. Be sure to stay close by.
Talk with your child's doctor before giving your child any nonprescription medicines or herbal remedies as a comfort measure. Products with alcohol or sugar in them are not recommended.
Do not get angry at your child for crying. Never shake or harm your child. Shaking a child in anger or playing rough, such as throwing a baby up into the air and catching him or her, can cause shaken baby syndrome. If you find that you are losing patience or are afraid that you may hurt your child:
Symptoms to Watch For During Home Treatment
Call your doctor if any of the following occur during home treatment:
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