Increased carrying reduces infant crying: Randomized control trial

Pediatrics (Impact Factor: 5.47). 06/1986; 77(5):641-8.
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT The crying pattern of normal infants in industrialized societies is characterized by an overall increase until 6 weeks of age followed by a decline until 4 months of age with a preponderance of evening crying. We hypothesized that this "normal" crying could be reduced by supplemental carrying, that is, increased carrying throughout the day in addition to that which occurs during feeding and in response to crying. In a randomized controlled trial, 99 mother-infant pairs were assigned to an increased carrying or control group. At the time of peak crying (6 weeks of age), infants who received supplemental carrying cried and fussed 43% less (1.23 v 2.16 h/d) overall, and 51% less (0.63 v 1.28 hours) during the evening hours (4 PM to midnight). Similar but smaller decreases occurred at 4, 8, and 12 weeks of age. Decreased crying and fussing were associated with increased contentment and feeding frequency but no change in feeding duration or sleep. We conclude that supplemental carrying modifies "normal" crying by reducing the duration and altering the typical pattern of crying and fussing in the first 3 months of life. The relative lack of carrying in our society may predispose to crying and colic in normal infants.

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    • "On average, women who received PREPP reported over two fewer bouts of fuss/cry per day. These results add support to previous findings that demonstrated that the use of specific infant care techniques is effective at reducing infant fuss/cry behavior (Hunziker and Barr 1986; Hiscock et al. 2014). Unlike Hiscock et al. (2014), who found that their intervention reduced crying problems only in babies classified as Bfrequent feeders,^ the current study found that the effects on maternal report of cry behavior were not limited to a subset of infants. "
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    ABSTRACT: Most interventions to prevent postpartum depression (PPD) focus on the mother rather than the mother-infant dyad. As strong relationships between infant sleep and cry behavior and maternal postpartum mood have been demonstrated by previous research, interventions targeted at the dyad may reduce symptoms of PPD. The goal of the current study was to examine the effectiveness of Practical Resources for Effective Postpartum Parenting (PREPP). PREPP is a new PPD prevention protocol that aims to treat women at risk for PPD by promoting maternally mediated behavioral changes in their infants, while also including mother-focused skills. Results of this randomized control trial (RCT) (n = 54) indicate that this novel, brief intervention was well tolerated and effective in reducing maternal symptoms of anxiety and depression, particularly at 6 weeks postpartum. Additionally, this study found that infants of mothers enrolled in PREPP had fewer bouts of fussing and crying at 6 weeks postpartum than those infants whose mothers were in the Enhanced TAU group. These preliminary results indicate that PREPP has the potential to reduce the incidence of PPD in women at risk and to directly impact the developing mother-child relationship, the mother's view of her child, and child outcomes.
    Archives of Women s Mental Health 08/2015; DOI:10.1007/s00737-015-0549-5 · 2.16 Impact Factor
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    • "Most have involved changes to diet or use of medication, with results mostly suggesting no effect over and above placebo and additionally, the methodological rigor of these trials has been questioned [45]. Increased carrying of the infant has been shown in one trial to prevent crying [46] but did not reduce established crying in another trial [47]. Keefe [48] has proposed a model to explain infant colic as a psychobiological disturbance in infant behaviour regulation due to increased sensitivity to the environment. "
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    ABSTRACT: Infant crying and sleep problems (e.g. frequent night waking, difficulties settling to sleep) each affect up to 30% of infants and often co-exist. They are costly to manage and associated with adverse outcomes including postnatal depression symptoms, early weaning from breast milk, and later child behaviour problems. Preventing such problems could improve these adverse outcomes and reduce costs to families and the health care system. Anticipatory guidance-i.e. providing parents with information about normal infant sleep and cry patterns, ways to encourage self-settling in infants, and ways to develop feeding and settling routines before the onset of problems-could prevent such problems. This paper outlines the protocol for our study which aims to test an anticipatory guidance approach. 750 families from four Local Government Areas in Melbourne, Australia have been randomised to receive the Baby Business program (intervention group) or usual care (control group) offered by health services. The Baby Business program provides parents with information about infant sleep and crying via a DVD and booklet (mailed soon after birth), telephone consultation (at infant age 6-8 weeks) and parent group session (at infant age 12 weeks). All English speaking parents of healthy newborn infants born at > 32 weeks gestation and referred by their maternal and child health nurse at their first post partum home visit (day 7-10 postpartum), are eligible. The primary outcome is parent report of infant night time sleep as a problem at four months of age and secondary outcomes include parent report of infant daytime sleep or crying as a problem, mean duration of infant sleep and crying/24 hours, parental depression symptoms, parent sleep quality and quantity and health service use. Data will be collected at two weeks (baseline), four months and six months of age. An economic evaluation using a cost-consequences approach will, from a societal perspective, compare costs and health outcomes between the intervention and control groups. To our knowledge this is the first randomised controlled trial of a program which aims to prevent both infant sleeping and crying problems and associated postnatal depression symptoms. If effective, it could offer an important public health prevention approach to these common, distressing problems.
    BMC Pediatrics 02/2012; 12(1):13. DOI:10.1186/1471-2431-12-13 · 1.93 Impact Factor
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    • "In an RCT of a community sample of infants, Hunziker and Barr (1986) assessed the effectiveness of the supplementary carrying of infants in an attempt to minimize crying. They found that despite the intervention group carrying infants for 50% more time than did the control group, there was no significant difference between the groups in the frequency of infant crying bouts; however, they did find that there was a 43% reduction in crying duration at the 6-week period. "
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    ABSTRACT: Colic, or excessive infant crying, occurs during the first 3 months in approximately 15 to 20% of infants and is the most common concern for which parents seek medical advice during an infant's first year. Various physiological and environmental causes have been investigated. Some researchers have proposed multifactorial causes while others have argued that it is simply the extreme end of the normal crying continuum. As the etiology of colic is not clear, definitions of colic have relied on behavioral descriptions, and the relative merits of specific behaviors in affording an accurate definition are debated. This lack of clarity has compounded difficulties in identifying effective interventions for colic. One point of agreement is that colic is extremely distressing for parents. Some have argued that the disruption to the infant-parent relationship can have long-term implications for development while others have argued that only if the crying persists beyond 3 months is there a risk of long-term implications. It is concluded that due to the incidence of colic and the immediate impact it has on family functioning, more research is required to further our understanding of colic. In addition, the identification of effective coping strategies and consoling methods to assist parents through this stressful period is required.
    Infant Mental Health Journal 09/2011; 32(5):526 - 541. DOI:10.1002/imhj.20308 · 0.61 Impact Factor
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