We’re back and sharing more of our favorite tips for soothing fussy babies. If you missed our last post with the first six tips for soothing a baby you can find it here.
As a fine art Dallas newborn photographer and mother to three children, I have had the opportunity to soothe a lot of babies over the years. I’ve learned that all babies have different personalities, things they like and dislike, and preferred methods for being soothed. However, I have discovered a number of tools that are almost always universally helpful when soothing a fussy baby. I’m sharing my top tips for soothing babies learned over a decade of photographing newborns.7) Soother: Many babies can use a little extra help to settle. Whether they suck on their thumb or a soothie, they just require a little more comfort to fully settle. During a newborn session, we use soothies (pacifiers, dummies, soothies) on a very limited basis but they can definitely be helpful.
8) Rocking: Babies are used to the gentle rocking motion of their mother’s movements while in the womb. My babies would always inevitably awake as soon as I would lie down to sleep at night. If we have a baby who hasn’t settled using the above attempts we will sometimes rock them gently to help them settle. If I’ve already posed them I will hold their head in one hand and gently rock them while shushing and/or rubbing their forehead. This works like a charm.
9) Tucking Knees: When babies are gassy it often helps to tuck their little knees up against their chest. A lot of our poses involve this position which works out well.10) Patting Back: To help alleviate gas we will often stop to pat a baby’s back or bottom usually in combination with other methods like rocking or shushing.
11) Weighted Blanket: Recently we’ve begun using a weighted blanket especially designed for newborn sessions. While we do not recommend using blankets for a napping baby, we have found that the weighted blanket works similar to swaddling. The slight extra weight on their limbs keeps them from startling and helps them feel safe and comforted during their newborn session. We use the weighted blankets sparingly and baby is always under direct observation during their use, but it can be a helpful tool for helping comfort baby while they are drifting off to sleep. We found an article that warns about using weighted blankets regularly during nap time so would caution parents not to use them during nap time. They are helpful for the brief time a newborn photographer would use them though. You can read the article here.12) Be patient and stay calm: This is our top tip for both newborn photographers and new parents. Babies can sense our emotions. From the way we hold them to our heart rate, our mood can directly effect the babies we are near. If we get frustrated or anxious that can easily reflect back on your baby’s mood. So stay calm, try different methods and if they do not work try something new, then come back to the methods you have tried. You’ll figure it out. And most of all, enjoy those baby cuddles!
During our sessions, we follow baby’s lead and try to read the clues they are giving us to determine what it is they need. Every baby is different and part of the joy of photographing newborns is getting to know each new, tiny personality. By creating a soothing environment for your little one, we are then able to create those stunning, one of a kind fine art images that you will love.
We hope you enjoyed and learned from these top tips for soothing babies. To learn more about booking your fine art newborn session please contact us here. If you are an aspiring newborn photographer and would like more information on mentoring with us please email Lindsay at firstname.lastname@example.org.