For most babies, teething can start anytime between 4 and 10 months and usually makes babies fussy and cranky. Recently, my 8-month old niece starts teething and she’s been on a “cranky streak” since her teeth started budding. I love my niece but it’s really hard to see she’s in pain when there’s not much you can do about it. Even though we know that we can’t blame our babies for being difficult during this phase, yet while we’re talking about taking a break, we won’t really get one if there’s a cranky baby who keeps crying. That’s why I started thinking how we can distract our babies when they get cranky. Here’re 3 ways that I have found worked.
1. Distract the cranky baby with a change in environment
One way to distract a cranky baby is to change the environment in which they’re in. I’ve found this to be extremely helpful – works EVERY time when my own girl was going through the same phase too! Whenever the baby starts being cranky, try changing the environment by bringing her out of the room. You can even bring her out of the house/restaurant for a change in scenery.
You see, since babies are inquisitive in nature, the change in environment can help to distract them from their crankiness by giving them new objects around them. They’ll be curious over the change in the objects around them and starts observing. This helps to calm them down a little.
2. Distract the cranky baby with her favourite toy/item
Another way to distract the cranky baby, if a change in environment is not possible, is to distract them with her favourite toy or item. At times when my niece gets cranky, it really helps when I pulled out one of her favourite toys. Almost immediately, she will tend to calm down and starts entertaining herself with the toy.
Recently, I started experimenting with other objects and found that she gets quite fascinated even by a piece of paper. This means that it doesn’t need to be limited to toys to keep a baby distracted from their crankiness. We can look for items around the house (as long they are not dangerous), and yes – even a piece of paper may go a long way.
3. Distract the cranky baby with her favourite person
At times, her favourite person can come in to distract the cranky baby. My niece enjoys hanging around her parents but she also enjoys the company of her grandmother. When she gets cranky and starts crying non-stop, I find that my grandmother’s presence helps a lot. For some reason, the way that they interact with each other helps to soothe her and distract her such that she no longer focuses on her discomfort.
In short, when our babies are cranky, it will help if we are able to find ways to distract the cranky baby while we solve the issue that’s causing the crankiness. It might be hunger; it might be fatigue. At times, like the case of my baby niece, it has been teething. As we interact with our babies, we’ll become experts with our own babies and know what’ll really help.