Solutions for excessive crying and colic

If you’ve gone through the checklist of hunger, sleep, nappy change, cuddles in our last article then you’re looking for something else to help them and chances are your baby is uncomfortable. Here are some solutions to help you:

  • Soother/pacifier –  It’s worth trying a soother/pacifier and see if they feel comforted by non-nutritive sucking. A lot of babies need to suck for more than food, they find comfort in sucking and it helps they’re digestive system, palate and tongue mobilisation. 
  • Position – Hold baby in a different position, the tiger in the tree hold often provides comfort for a baby or holding the baby face on your legs and rubbing their back. 
  • Movement – Move around while holding baby on your shoulder and upper body. Go for a walk with baby in a sling or pram, often the movement calms baby.
  • Timing – Try to attend to your baby when the crying starts – this can avoid the crying becoming extreme and so reducing their crying and helping baby feel secure.
  • Physical treatments – paediatric physical therapies, such as Craniosacral Therapy, Cranial Osteopathy and Chiropractic treatments, can help reduce discomfort by finding the root cause of the discomfort and gently releasing strains and tensions, allowing the body to move more freely and providing relief for the baby. 
  • If the crying persists and you’re concerned, speak to your health visitor or GP.

We are incredibly advanced in medicine now and often reach for medication to fix a problem. However, excessive crying and colic in young babies is an area that modern medicine doesn’t know enough about and there are no firm reasons for its cause and so no prescription medications to help solve it. A baby will usually grow out of excessive crying around 16 weeks old but it’s incredibly stressful for both parents, family members and the baby in the meantime! 

Regular excessive crying can have longer term consequences on the baby and parents/family members. A baby who persistently cries during the day and night for a number of weeks or months will be in fight or flight mode, provoking stress hormones making it hard for baby to calm easily and the high cortisol levels cause stress and anxiety and negatively impact the digestive system and growth. There is research that persistent crying through the first months and year of life can lead to behavioural and learning difficulties such as ADD, ADHD and anxiety. We know all parents want to give their baby the best start in life so we hope our suggestions help reduce your baby’s excessive crying. 

Remember that every baby is different, and what works for one may not work for another. Trust your instincts and ask for help when you need it – If you’re feeling overwhelmed or struggling to soothe your baby, seek support from family, friends, or healthcare professionals, we all need help every now and again. 

There is help and advice available at Cry-sis, NHS and if you want to find a Craniosacral Therapist, Paediatric Chiropractor or Osteopath click the links and read more in our article here . You can contact us at to see if we can help you find a specialist in your area.

23 February 2023