Take a Break, Never Shake: The Period of Purple Crying

Babies Cry. We know this.

What we aren’t always prepared for is the amount that some babies cry.  In fact, there is a stage of life where babies – yes, even healthy, happy babies -cry… A LOT.

This stage begins around two weeks of age, peaks at about two months of age and eventually, levels off by around four or five months of age.

This stage in the baby’s life is called the “Period of Purple Crying” and it is 100% normal.

So, what do we know about the Period of Purple Crying, besides that fact that it is 100% normal and NOT brought on by anything you are doing, or not doing properly as a parent or caregiver?

-It can come out of nowhere and is often very unexpected
-It usually peaks in the evenings
-During this period, the baby will not stop crying no matter what you try (old tips and tricks you may have heard from family or friends, or even ones that worked for other babies you’ve cared for may not work during this period)

But we also know that this period can be extremely difficult for a parent or caregiver, causing them to become overwhelmed, frustrated and upset.

We also know that this period of crying is the number one reason parents shake or hurt their babies.

That is why it is VERY important that we understand and prepare for the potential period of purple crying before the baby arrives and remember it once the baby is here.

So, what do you do if you and your baby are experiencing the Period of Purple Crying? The most important thing to do is TAKE A BREAK – NEVER SHAKE.

Put your baby in a safe place, like a crib, and take a few minutes to calm yourself, call a friend or ask someone to help you.

Remind yourself that this Period of Purple Crying is OK, and you and your baby will get through this, together.

If you have questions or need support about this or any other baby-related topics, please call our Healthy Growth & Development Team at 519-352-7270 EXT 2903.

It takes a village to raise a child and we are happy to be a part of yours.

We are CK Public Health.