Why Is My Baby So Fussy?

By Temma Ehrenfeld @temmaehrenfeld
August 31, 2023
Why Is My Baby So Fussy?

If you’re tearing your hair out, thinking “Why is my baby so fussy?” — the answer could be several reasons. Here's what you should know about many of them.

Babies cry when they are hungry or wet, typically two to three hours a day. Meeting their needs can calm them. But what if you don’t see an obvious need to fill and your baby cries and cries?

About a fifth of babies develop colic. That term applies to any healthy well-fed baby who cries for longer than three hours a day, more than three days a week, or more than three weeks. In full-term babies, a colicky spell starts around the second week and usually disappears before the sixth month.


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Colic is one of the main reasons parents take infants to doctors. A doctor can rule out causes such as:

  • An infection
  • Acid reflux
  • Pressure or inflammation of the brain and nervous system
  • Eye trouble
  • An irregular heartbeat
  • An injury to bones or muscles

Colicky babies swallow air while crying and may end up passing more gas or burping. Their faces can turn red, and they may clench their fists and curl up their legs. But they’re not otherwise unhealthy. In fact, they may eat more and grow faster.

The reason your baby is fussy may be that she’s going through a growth spurt, a good thing (another sign of a growth spurt might be longer or more frequent nursing). Other possibilities are diaper rash, thrush, food sensitivities, and breastfeeding issues.



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August 31, 2023

Reviewed By:  

Janet O’Dell, RN