How to Comfort a Crying Baby
July 2022  by

How to Comfort a Crying Baby

It wasn’t until my son was born that I wished he came with an instruction booklet—just like the neatly folded papers tucked into a box of new kitchen gadgets or Lego sets. Include some clever illustrations for those of us that have to see it to do it and it’s all the better.

After Nathan was born, the thing I wished I knew how to do the most was comforting him when he seemingly cried for no reason. If he was feed, diapers changed, and no apparent illness I felt like I was holding an alien whose language was indiscernible. “Take me to your leader,” I’d think as I began to cry, too.

One day, as a friend watched me struggle with my wiggling, wailing boy. She swooped in, snatched him from my arms, and seamlessly moved through a series of steps that resulted in my baby slumbering silently in her secure embrace. I had to know the secret. She introduced me to the 4-s’s to calm a crying baby. 1) Swaddle; 2) Sway; 3) Swoosh; and 4) Suck. Now, even as a grandmother these tried-and-true steps work like magic. No baby can resist their charm. Let me explain them to you one at a time.

1) Swaddle: This trick has been used by mother dating back to 4,000 B.C. Taking a thin blanket you basically make a baby burrito. Lay the baby on the center of a diagonally place blanket, Fold the bottom corner up. Tuck the left corner under the bottom of the child. Next pull the right corner snuggly around the back of the child. Voila! This warm cozy position calms the baby against their natural startle reflex which means they’ll sleep better. It also keeps their hands off their face which prevents scratching. Perhaps this is where we got the saying, “snug as a bug in a rug.”

2) Sway: Next pick the baby into your arms, preferably on their left side which aids in digestion because of the position of the stomach’s. Now it’s time to move in a swaying motion from side to side. This calming gesture reminds the baby of the rhythm of the womb. The rocking movement is mimicked throughout childhood whether in a chair or a swing. You may even observe your child self-sooth by swaying back and forth at nap time.

3) Swoosh: Now you add sound effects to your little piggy in a blanket. You can literally say, “swoosh, swoosh, swoosh.” My favorite noice is to sing softly. In a pinch, the white noise from a fan or dyer will do the trick. You may even purchase a stuffed animal with the recording of a heartbeat. All these sounds mimic the soundtrack of their mother’s womb. Familiar sounds put a baby at ease.

4) Suck: Sucking is vital to a baby’s survival. It begins in the womb as an infant discovers its thumb or finger because the womb’s soft walls deflect their hands toward their mouth. Did you know that a baby’s sucking lowers their heart rate and blood pressure which in turn lowers their stress levels? If your baby has been fed, it’s helpful to offer your finger, their thumb, or a pacifier. It will relax them enough to fall asleep.

Believe it or not, I’ve been the lady to swoop in on struggling mothers whether on planes, in supermarkets, and church services. I never give off judgment vibes. Just the calming assurance that when that baby is walked through the 4 S’s—comfort is on its way. Now it’s your turn. Whether you’re an aunty, babysitter, or new mother relax and follow the instructions. Parents will welcome the relief.

Explore more on: Motherhood

About the Author

Lenya Heitzig is an award-winning author and speaker whose passion for women, God’s Word, and worship influences others to recognize God’s miraculous hand in the midst of the mundane.

Read More from Lenya HeitzigBecome a Blog or Devo Contributor

Comments are closed.

Franchesca Bayne

Sheologie Director

Franchesca Bayne serves as Sheologie's program director by overseeing the daily operations of women's ministries and organizing and hosting programs/services such as prayer groups, connect groups, Bible study, retreats, outreach programs, and outbound communication. She also facilitates support services and/or performing community outreach to attract new members. Franchesca has an AS in accounting, BA in Christian Foundations, and MA in Christian Counseling.

She was born and raised in New Mexico, and is married to her best friend, pastor, and business partner. Together, they have two incredible teenagers, Maddie and Declan, who also serve in ministry. She has a heart for the people, the broken, the misunderstood, and the everyday people just like her. She loves to build community. Franchesca's spoken at many events and loves to share the light and love of Jesus in truth. Franchesca passionately lives to lead others to Christ as she follows Him and calls it "A Journey" as she lives out being a Christian in the many hats she wears: daughter, sister, auntie, mom, wife, pastors' wife, life coach, community leader, and friend. Her hobbies include, pick-up games of basketball, softball, canoeing, and international cooking styles. You can stop by her office anytime to say "Hi" and see what's next, or for prayer.

This will close in 0 seconds

Madison Newcomb

Sheologie Bible Study Coordinator

Madison was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico. She has a heart for both women's and children's ministry and loves seeing them eagerly pursue the gospel. Discipling those who God calls to her brings her pure joy. She is passionate about women finding their confidence and identity in Christ alone. Madison loves teaching kindergarteners in Calvary Kids on Sunday mornings, spending time with family and friends, gardening, and brunch.

This will close in 0 seconds

Brandi Mares

Special Events Coordinator

Brandi Mares was born in Albuquerque, NM. She has a heart to see women grow in the Word of God, and see it transform their lives. She was once a hopeless, lost young girl, but the Lord gave her a whole new life in Christ. She has a heart for praying with people God places in her path and seeing them restored. Her greatest blessings in life are her relationship with Christ, her husband, and her three beautiful children.

This will close in 0 seconds

Kayla Maria

Ministry/Digital Communications Coordinator

Kayla Maria was born and raised in Albuquerque, NM. She is creative, and delights in photography and social media because she gets to honor the Lord through her skills. Kayla has a heart for youth and women, especially those who feel purposeless, because she was once that girl who had no purpose. She believes in loving all the lost. She spends her free time rock climbing, traveling, and just hanging out with friends.

This will close in 0 seconds