The Happiest Baby On The Block Method

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The “Happiest Baby On The Block” Method is a way of helping to comfort a baby with colic that is based on the research of Dr. Harvey Karp.  The “Happiest Baby On The Block” Method relies on five specific principles that parents can use to help their baby.  Dr. Karp has based his The “Happiest Baby On The Block” method on scientific research combined with an examination of how various cultures have approached the issue of colic in the past.  The “Happiest Baby On The Block” Method works to create a calming reflex in the baby with colic.

There are five different components to the “Happiest Baby On The Block” Method.  Conveniently, each of the components starts with an “S”, and they are often referred to as the “five S’s.”  These are swaddling, side/stomach position, shushing, swinging, and sucking.

  1. Swaddling refers to a way to wrap a baby in a blanket such that the baby has continual touching, and can resemble the feeling that the baby had when he or she was in the womb.  You can use a regular blanket to swaddle, or you can use a specially designed swaddling blanket or safety blanket.
  2. Side/Stomach position refers to the idea that, while holding your baby, you should hold him or her on the left side to help with digestion.  Alternatively, you can hold him or her on the stomach to help provide reassurance.  Make certain, however, to reduce the risks of SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome), that you place your baby on his or her back to sleep.
  3. Shushing refers to shushing sounds.  Shushing sounds typically take the form of white noise, such as with a vacuum or a fan.  You can use a white noise CD for this purpose.
  4. Swinging, which is relatively self-explanatory, suggests that swinging will help your baby feel the sort of motion that he or she felt in the womb.  Rocking or car rides are good ways to create this swinging.
  5. Finally, a baby needs to suck.  This can happen by feeding, such as with a bottle or breastfeeding, or using a pacifier.

While this brief overview of the “Happiest Baby On The Block” Method may be helpful, many parents have found it useful to explore some of Dr. Karp’s books, videos, and other products in order to really implement the method.

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This entry was posted in Colic.


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