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Q&A: How to know what baby wants?

How will I know what my baby wants and needs?

Re: How will I know what my baby wants and needs?

The Bump Expert

This is one of the biggest questions I get, and the answer is... you just will. Parents worry so much about how they'll know if the baby is happy or sick or whatever else. Dads especially are so nervous -- they assume the mom will just know, that the instinct is delivered with the placenta or something.

It never ceases to amaze me what these same parents say when they come in at the one month visit. They tell me exactly what their baby likes, what it doesn't like, how it likes to be held, and so on. It just cracks me up, how this "helpless” baby that can't even talk is so completely able to communicate exactly what it wants. Somehow, it just works.

Dr. Vicki Papadeas

Q&A: How to know what baby wants?

I find the answer "You just will" to be complete and total BS. I am still confused as to what my son wants when he is crying. If other parents do, congrats to you. All I do know is that I love him.

hijoi |

Q&A: How to know what baby wants?

Right now at one month, I couldn't agree with you more. I can't even see straight and know what I want, let alone know what he wants.

bebetulips |

Q&A: How to know what baby wants?

my son is 4 months old, I still have no idea what he wants, he cries when I hold him when I feed him , when I put him down etc, etc, etc.

reibermom |

Q&A: How to know what baby wants?

The best advice I got was to remember that babies don't know what they want. When they're overtired they will fight sleep. When they're cranky from gas or, again, they're tired, they'll act hungry. Don't feel bad if you're confused too, just cover your bases and tell yourself over and over that it's just a few more months until they can tell you what they want :)

ready123 |

Q&A: How to know what baby wants?

The only time I really know what she wants is when she is hungry. She has a distinct hungry cry and hungry actions and then she has random cries when she's in the carseat, getting a bath, laying on her back/tummy, getting dressed or undressed. My DD is 1 month old today.

Dannyswifey10 |

Q&A: How to know what baby wants?

It took me about a month & a half to figure out my baby. The biggest help was when I read an article in American Baby magazine about sleep,,, it talked about babies being extremely cranky when over-tired, it said from 0-3 months the MAX amount of time a baby should be awake is 2 hours, and no more than 3 hours at 3 months. Also they should sleep a minimum of 45 minutes for a nap. It said that parents often try any number of things when an over-tired baby starts to fuss which makes it worse as you further over-stimulate your child. At that point I realized that my baby wanted to see everything around her so much so that it was hurting her happiness. Even now at 3 & 1/2 months I can almost set a clock to her time awake. At an hour and a half she loses it. Now I can identify when she is sleepy by her actions, but I will definately say 9 out of 10 times if my baby is crying its because she's tired. The other people I've passed this on to are having a lot of success with their babies too :-)

LauBaker |

Q&A: How to know what baby wants?

My baby is a month old and I can say that I know what he wants. I can tell when he is hungry or he wants me to change him or even if he wants to hear my heart beat. To the mothers that don't know trust me I think you guys do. You just may be a little unsure. It will come to you.

Wyss2526 |

Q&A: How to know what baby wants?

Along the lines of baby doesn't know what they want, and baby needs sleep... sometimes they just need "me time". One of the things my SIL did with her babies that I fully plan on doing with my little one, is "shutting down their world". Everything is new to them, which means they are constantly absorbing, learning, growing... which can be exhausting! Think of the first few days of attending a new school or job.... learning peoples names, the new places to eat, how computer systems work, how to unlock your locker... its not tough work, but at the end of those days you're exhausted and just "done". Well, that's every waking moment for a baby. Sometimes they just want to sit and stare at a blank wall, with no noises or distractions and relax. My sister used to tent a blanket over their strollers and walk them around when they would fuss uncontrollably. Within minutes they'd be silent. They wouldn't necessarily fall asleep, but just sit there and be content. Same goes for their crib, she made it calming and simple. No fancy patterns, mobiles, mirrors.. it was where they went to sleep & rest. All three gals became great sleepers and "waker upers", smiling and cooing when they woke up not screaming and crying. Also, shutting down their world became a STAPLE at busy restaurants. It buys you that extra 30 minutes you may need to finish a meal and pay the bill. Give it a shot the next time you just can't seem to console your little one... stand facing a quiet corner of the room, even dim the lights a bit and see if they calm down. Once their calm, then you can try other things.. feedings, diaper changes, naps, burping.

mziegenhein |

Q&A: How to know what baby wants?

My son in 4 weeks old today and I know when he is hungry, cause he smacks his lips the certain way, I know when he needs to be burped cause he moves his arms and legs and i can see that he is uncomortable.. i think paying attention to signals will help to determine his needs or trial and error, try one thing and if it does not work try another thing.. but one thing for sure i am keeping my eyes open for his sleepy signals and make sure that he goes to sleep on time otherwise he is cranky and has a hard time falling asleep..

rastasha |

Q&A: How to know what baby wants?

I actually have to say that I do ''just know'' what my baby wants. She is only 3 weeks old & I can already distinguish her ''feed me'' cry from her ''hold me'' cry and ''change me'' cry. I have only heard her ''ouch'' cry at the hospital, so it might have changed...but I think its a good thing she hasn't cried like that at home =)

Leigh1225 |

Q&A: How to know what baby wants?

babies seem to love me for some reason. ive helped raise my nine month old neice so far and learned that there is body language and a distinct cry for everything they want. my son is the same way and hes only a month old. my best advice to the moms that think they "dont know" is to watch there body language and listen closely to their cries. for example i have somewhat of a schedule with my son. he eats at almost the same times every day. pay close attention to the way your child moves and sounds when you know its time to feed. if they are fussy afterwards and you have a hard time burping sometimes like i do, now is the best time to be giving your undivided attention. they may have a gas bubble. which means dont stop till you get a burp. and sometimes the best way to do that is switching positions such as from shoulder to holding them in a sitting position. pretty soon you too will be able to say, i "just know" what they want because you will "just know" their patterns. hope this helps

jonathanryansmommy |

Q&A: How to know what baby wants?

My DD is 9 days old and I could tell from day 1 the difference between her cries. Some just know right from the start , and some need to work at it a bit . In the end your baby knows you'll give them everything they need and want .

rahrah92 |

Q&A: How to know what baby wants?

My daughter is 3 1/2 weeks old and I can tell when she is going to spit up because she makes this certain "cooing" noise and within the next 10 seconds she's spitting up. I'm slowly getting to know her different cries and body signs as to what she wants. She will do this little wimper cry when she's starting to get uncomfortable or even bored but I still haven't quite gotten her "change me" cry or "hold me" cry figured out. Eventually you will figure out different patterns and you will know in the ballpark of what your baby wants/needs.

snshyne52 |

Q&A: How to know what baby wants?

I am a mother of 5 boy's..ages 26 24 10 and 4..my newest son is 1 months old and i feel you on that not knowing the cry's....But if u listen close to his or her cry you can tell if its a dirty or wet diaper and change it..u can tell if its gas by listening to the cry if it has little air pockets or sounds like he or she is gasping for air or brings the legs up to its chest as if to take a shit lol....the i am tired cry is always followed by a yawn...the hungry cry is followed by chewing on the hands.turning to suck on your kneck or chest....every baby is different..my 1 month old he dont cry he makes thease noises...and each grunt and groan is different i just know by watching his body language....u can go to the library or even on internet look up baby body language...it tells you what to look for..and how to communicate.with your baby all babys use sign language and body language to communicate..its so cool..

Jcutiev39 |

Q&A: How to know what baby wants?

Im a first time mom and my baby is two weeks and 1 hr 40 minutes old. I dont know anything when he cries. I have watch him and see if he's hungry, in pain, need diaper change or whatever and even then I'm confused.

philliejean |

Q&A: How to know what baby wants?

My son is just over a month old. I honestly do "just know" what he wants or need. I had to work at it a little bit in the very beginning but by the time we left the hospital we had a pretty good connection and schedule with each other. Just recently he started this crying and fussing between 6pm and 8pm and would not stop. I realized that he was really tired (as he is up more often during the day now) So I started to walk with him and that would calm him down. Mom's who say they don't know, give yourself some credit. It is hard adjusting to a life with a baby and you will figure it out. Just give it time and be confident that you are doing everything right!!!

MsMommaMathison |

Q&A: How to know what baby wants?

It seems to just be a learning process. One night she was screaming her head off, and I am thinking she has gotten too frustrated to eat but she is still hungry. So I'm trying to calm her, then trying to get her to latch on. Finally my husband gets up and suggests changing her diaper. Now I know, she absolutely HATES being wet. Poopie diapers she will never tell you about, but a wet diaper is just not to be ignored.

Theresa Miguel |

Q&A: How to know what baby wants?

Secrets of the Baby Whisperer by Tracey Hogg definitely helped me out. You have to sift through the book and figure out what works for your own family, but her basic E.A.S.Y. (Eat, Activity, Sleep, You time) format of scheduling really illuminated how to address my daughter's cries. I observed her and noticed she put herself on the schedule and that in itself helped to identify why she was crying. All I had to do was think about where she was at in the "schedule". Was she tired? Hungry? etc. I understand that things such as a growth spurt and teething to throw a monkey wrench to make it a little tougher to decipher, but in the general sense, it was really helpful! It is definitely a process, but take heart! It doesn't last forever and eventually your baby's cries will get easier to figure out.

grady&aisha |

Q&A: How to know what baby wants?

"Just knowing" doesn't necessarily mean you know the exact thing your baby needs at the moment they begin to cry, but rather it means you've learned strategies to figure out what will soothe baby. Some babies do have a distinct cry for their different needs, but not all babies do. Just because you can't say, "I know what he wants right this minute," doesn't mean you don't know the needs of your child. If you're not sure what's causing the crankiness, just take a second to calm yourself down and problem solve. Does he need to be changed? When did he last eat and could he be hungry? Is he gassy? Is he tired? It might take a little time to go through the list and figure out the problem, but you'll get there. And if you remain calm and in control your less likely to get baby more worked up.

Joibubble05 |

Q&A: How to know what baby wants?

My DD is 6 weeks and I am now starting to understand her. All her cries pretty much sound the same (accept for her "I am tired mommy" cry) but the way she gets the massage across to me is signs. If she is hungry she sucks on her fingers, or lips smacks. If she is getting tired she will rub her eyes and yawn. She is really good about too. As a new time mom it is all very new a frustrating in the beginning, but if you really pay attention you will get to know your babies signs and life will just be that much easier with them. Best of luck with all you new time mom's <3

Sblaauwbroek |

Q&A: How to know what baby wants?

i haven't had my son yet, but I have been a bit worried that I wouldn't understand my son's signals/needs to make him able to cope in this new world. However, one person commented on here and I believe I may try it. "mziegenhein" was the person who said "Shut down their World"... I believe that may be a great way to calm a baby - not completely of course as ever child is different, but reducing the amount of stimulation in their area around them, may be a good idea... But as I said, I've not yet had my son, I'm only at 39 wks, but I am trying to do a little research on newborn care... I really do appreciate all the wonderful suggestions by everyone - I do read them all and I find that getting another person's experience can be quite helpful. Anyway, if my son is over-stimulated, I may just try "Shutting down his world" when he needs his rest. Nice idea. Plus it wont harm the child.

KathrynFN87 |