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Different Baby Cries and What They Mean

Different Baby Cries and What They Mean

Crying is the only way a baby can let you know what they need1. Most of the time, you may not understand what your crying baby is trying to tell you. But if you pay close attention, you'll notice that your baby cries in numerous ways, and each one has a distinct meaning.

Why Do Babies Cry? 

A baby’s cry is vital to their development and well-being. They are a natural response to their basic requirements. The baby’s body is sending out messages with these initial tears. When these cues go unanswered, the wailing transforms into actual alarm calls due to unmet needs.  When the baby reaches five months old, their cries become more modulated and varied to express even more specialized requirements.

What Are Babies Trying to Say? 

The fact that every newborn speaks the same language from birth, regardless of mother tongue, is amazing. Their noises are a natural way for them to communicate their needs. They are not so much sobbing as they are needs signaling. Before the baby’s discomfort becomes too great, you may attend to his needs by listening to these early noises2

Priscilla Dunstan, based on extensive research, has identified baby cries and their meanings3

Nèh – I am hungry 

Baby's tongue clings to their palate as if to suckle, and they let out a "Neh" sound. 

Èh – I need to burp 

The larynx shuts, the diaphragm descends, and a very jerky and short attempt to exhale is made. Help burp the baby just after he stops making this noise.

Aoh – I am sleepy 

The mouth opens wide, and the tongue flattens and withdraws with a yawn. This is the alert to get straight to bed!

Éérh – My stomach hurts

The sound is extended, compressed, and raspy. A baby squirms when uncomfortable gases rip through its gut. Give them a massage to assist.

Hèh – I am uncomfortable 

In particular, the soft H is easily identifiable. The baby might be uncomfortable in their current position, they might be hot or cold, or they might need to change their diapers.

Guèn – I am teething

The baby’s gums seem to brush against one another as they make this sound and salivate. Give the baby a teething ring if you can.

Lelaol – I need company

Baby’s make this sound as an expression of their boredom and wanting companionship. Get ready to interact with the baby. 

Nah – I’m thirsty

Babies after six months might make this sound because they are thirsty. 

Ouin – Nothing is going right

The baby is tensed, and nothing seems to be going well. All you have to do to soothe the baby. 

Also Read: Five Ways to Stop Baby Crying

What Else to Look for? 

In addition to crying noises, Dunstan baby language suggests observing your infant's actions. Among them are:

  • Turning of the head. Your baby may be ready to go to sleep if they make this movement without wailing. Your baby is probably in pain or uncomfortable if they are sobbing and moving their head back and forth.
  • Clenching a fist. Clenching your fists is sometimes misinterpreted as anger or discomfort, but it might also indicate that your baby is hungry, or hangry.
  • Jerking the arms. This might indicate that your baby is afraid or startled.
  • Arching the back. Your baby may be in discomfort or merely uncomfortable if they curtail into a bow. A back-arched baby may be an indication of overfeeding or bloating. Babies who are more than two months old may also arch their backs when they are just uncomfortable or exhausted.
  • Extending the legs. Your baby may be experiencing colic or gas if she is elevating or bending her legs towards her tummy. Or maybe your baby just wants to play because they are happy!

In conclusion, Dunstan baby language might assist you in figuring out why your newborn is crying. While many parents anecdotally say that it works for them, it may not work for every parent. However, even if you and your baby don't speak the same language just yet, your baby can already express their feelings to you. You may let your baby know that you are there for them and that you get their message by placing your own words on theirs and giving them the proper attention. Your baby will be able to find solace and become calmer as a result. Just think of how reassuring it would be for your baby to know they are understood and heard.





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