6 Strange Ways to Soothe My 5-Month-Old’s Colic Cries

Image via Devan McGuinness

Post originally ran May 21, 2014.

I can't believe it, but my fourth child is already 5-months-old, and it's been quite the ride! He was a challenge to get pregnant with, we had a challenging pregnancy, and his newborn and infant stages had some unique-to-us challenges as well.

I know baby colic is not unusual, but it's a new experience for us! My older three children didn't have a tendency to cry for hours each night with no apparent cause, so soothing baby Silver has been all about trial and error. I asked friends of mine for their been-there-done-that tips on helping ease the colic, and while they had some amazing suggestions, Silver apparently likes to do things his own way.

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When I say I was trying everything I could think of , I mean it. I have discovered that in doing so, I've found some weird, yet effective ways to help soothe my 5-month-old's cries. They're not all suggestions I would have found in a parenting book, and they don't necessarily make sense, but they work.

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Image via Flickr/ Uriel 1998

Play Minecraft

OK, so Silver isn't crying because he wants to play Minecraft, and I'm not one for the game either, but every time my oldest son plays the game, or even watches a tutorial on YouTube, Silver forgets about crying and is happy to watch. I don't know if it's the movement on the screen, the sound of the game, or the fact that his older brother talks constantly while playing, but it works.

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Image via Flickr/ lovelihood

Wipe his face with a baby wipe

We use cloth wipes for his diaper changes, so finding this trick took a little longer to discover. But now that we have discovered it, we rely on it a lot. If Silver is crying, all we need to do is take one of the disposable wipes (organic, chemical-free cotton because he has very sensitive skin) and gently stroke his face. I wipe it across his eyes, down his cheeks, and across his forehead, and in no time, he's back to calm. It's really sweet to see how well it works for him.

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Image via Flickr/ exfordy

Turn on the bathroom fan

Ah, white noise–a wonderful thing for crying babies! We have tried a lot of different sounds, but it seems like combining the white-noise fan sound with moving to a bathroom with a mirror so he can stare at himself equals gold. Well, it equals a quieter, happier baby, really.

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Image via Flickr/ andrechinn

Put him in the bathtub

Silver loves water–like for real; love that I've never seen before because my older three kids still scream and put up a fight when it's time to shower. Not Silver, though. This little man loves his splash-in-water time, and I swear he'd be the happiest person ever if he lived in a pool.

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Image via Flickr/ Nathan & Jenny

“Air it out” time

Although he would live in water forever, it's not always the most practical to give him a bath. And in those moments I can't, all I do is the next best thing, which is give him his “air it out” time. I take everything off him, including his diaper, and lay him on his changing pad (on the floor), and he's as happy as can be. I don't know if it's the cool air, the freeness you get being in your birthday suit, or what, but it will nearly always calm a colic fit.

{ MORE: Treating Colic With Technology }

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Image via author/ Devan McGuinness

Just start laughing

Like really. If I just start laughing or ask one of my kids to, it shocks Silver, as he tries to figure out what that sound is, and then he stops crying. Sometimes, if we're lucky, he will start laughing, too–the big benefit of having older kids who the baby just adores.

: What unusual things have you found to soothe your child? :

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6 Strange Ways to Soothe My 5-Month-Old’s Colic Cries

Devan McGuinness is the founder of the online resource Unspoken Grief, which is dedicated to breaking the silence of perinatal grief for those directly and indirectly affected by miscarriage, stillbirth and neonatal death. Using her own experience of surviving 12 miscarriages, Devan has been actively supporting and encouraging others who are wading through the challenges associated with perinatal and neonatal loss. Winner of the 2012 Bloganthropy Award and named one of Babble's “25 bloggers wh ... More

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4 comments

  1. Adah says:

    My breastfeeding little one had severe colic and gas issues. He was on Zantac but it didn’t work too much and still my baby had colic symptoms. Finally, put him on babies magic tea, a natural herbal formula and within a couple of days he was a super happy baby.

  2. Angie says:

    Love it! Ditto! My son loves to watch me play Sonic Hedgehog games & watch BabyFirst tv. He calms down when I mimick his sounds with a high-pitched “ooooo” or whatnot & he loves laughs too. But if we are in an unfamiliar place & he wakes from a nap, nothing will soothe him except to nurse.

  3. Aubrey says:

    My (now 2yo) had 2 songs that would get him to calm down and often fall asleep. LMFAO’s Sexy and I Know It (had to watch the video as well) and Evanescence, My Immortal. I swear, those were all we listened to for months.

    • Kids are so funny! My oldest son, when he was a young baby, would only calm down to the Pussycat Dolls songs. Glad to know I’m not the only parent who resorted to listening to songs on repeat! 🙂

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