The early days of motherhood can unfurl like a perennial sob story if you’re not sure how to respond to your baby’s cries. As a new mommy, you may devise your own methods to soothe your baby; by cradling, self-wearing or gently rocking, perhaps. You should know that your baby’s cries aren’t just an outlandish form of baby babble. There’s more to why babies cry than you think. And through carefully observation, you may just be able to determine what’s got your little one so frazzled.
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Meet Dunstan Baby Language
Dunstan Baby Language, a theory presented by an Australian mommy way back in 2006, suggests that newborn babies across races, cultures and linguistic groups demonstrate five basic cries, each one a reflection of a unique need. The language hasn’t been scientifically validated or proven, but it makes for an entertaining hypothesis for your baby’s wails.
Dunstan’s premise rests exclusively on babies between 0 and 3 months old who are only just discovering sound reflexes. These reflexes or cries, Dunstan says, are usually precursors to full-blown hysterical cries, which your baby will resort to only if her preemptive cry isn’t being responded to. As your little one grows, these preliminary cries will be eclipsed by more busy babbling. But for now, take heart in knowing that you can ease your baby’s distress by taking note of these different baby cries.
While God forgot to include a tot tear manual, we’ve got you covered. Here goes.
When babies neh, they’re essentially telling you that they’re feeling peckish and would like some milk, please. The resultant sound is a product of a sucking reflex where the tongue pushes up against the top of the mouth.
The oww is your baby’s version of a yawn, a reflex that will evolve as your baby grows. Naturally then, this sound is a subtle nudge that your baby needs to be cradled to sleep.
Must Read: Baby Whining
The heh, which can be just as easily confused with neh, is a call for help. And if left unaddressed, could morph into an uncontrollable hissy fit. The heh, is a sign of uneasiness or discomfort, and is typically a result of feeling too cold, needing a new diaper or wanting to be picked up.
To Know More: About Baby Sleep Patterns
The eair, much like the word itself, is an indicator that your baby has gas trapped in the lower abdomen. Although the sound can sometimes be hard to recognise, you’ll notice that it comes along with certain distinguishable body gestures. Your baby may vacillate between pulling her knees up and extending her legs out horizontally.
When your baby eh’s you, it’s burp o’clock. Again, this sound may be easily confused with neh, heh and eair, so it’s important to pay close attention to the exact sound.
Embracing the facets of Dunstan Baby Language is a good way to navigate your baby’s cries and keep her happy and fulfilled. We’ve come across many millennial mommies who reflect back, wishing they could have understood their babies’ cries better.
If your baby is less than three months old, it’s not too late for you to begin observing her cries. After all, a happy baby makes a happy mommy. Didn’t you know?
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