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A research project at Aarhus University provides a new insight into what can be defined as normal and excessive crying among infants, says the associate professor. – ScienceDaily

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If you are a novice parent who is more or less sleep deprived of google this question, the answer can reassure you.

Many popular Google hits will direct you to an old study that shows that the peak of a baby’s crying usually reaches about six weeks, after which it noticeably decreases and stabilizes at a low level after three months.

Commonly referred to as the “cry curve,” parents can expect their children to cry radically less after the initial peak. However, a new study conducted in Denmark challenges this picture of the “cry curve”, combining data from parents in 17 different countries.

“We have created two mathematical models that reasonably reflect the available data. None of them show that the duration of crying decreases so markedly after five weeks, which is otherwise seen in the graphs provided by parents. Available data show that crying still remains significant part of the repertoire of many babies after six months, ”says Christine Parsons, an associate professor of clinical medicine at Aarhus University.

The cry curve is widely used

Researchers collected data from 57 research papers from around the world in which parents recorded how much their children cry each day.

The usual crying model, the “crying curve,” now commonly referred to as parenting, is based on a 1962 U.S. study that focused only on the first twelve weeks of a child’s life.

This is a graph that new parents often present. If you google “baby crying,” you’ll see a lot of images of that particular graph. So we thought it would be interesting to simulate all the available data to find out what type of pattern best represents the data and check whether this corresponds to the original “cry curve”, – says Arno-Quentin Vermile, the first author of the article.

An important tool for clinicians

Crying is one of the first means of communication that babies use to get their parents ’attention. When parents respond appropriately to a child’s signals, the baby’s cognitive and emotional development is stimulated.

New parents often turn to the health care system for fear that their child is crying too much.

According to Christine Parsons, it is therefore important that both healthcare professionals and parents have a correct and accurate understanding of normal infant crying patterns.

“In particular, it is important for clinicians because their job is to help, support and reconcile the expectations of all concerned parents. It is important that clinicians have up-to-date data on what is normal for a baby’s crying so that they can “It’s best to support new parents. If parents think their child is crying too much, it could have negative consequences for both the parents and the child,” she said.

Crying patterns are very different

The definition of excessive crying or convulsions is widely used when a child cries for more than 3 hours a day, more than 3 days a week. It is estimated that in the first 6 weeks after birth colic affects 17 to 25% of infants.

Researchers from Aarhus University have developed two new models of baby crying. On one of them are visible peaks of baby crying after four weeks. Another shows that babies cry a lot and steadily during the first weeks, after which the level drops.

However, none of the models indicate a sharp decline, as is otherwise the case with the “original cry pattern”.

According to Christine Parsons, another important finding in the study is the extent to which different patterns of crying among infants – both within the country and abroad.

As an example, she mentions that the limited data available show that children from non-Western countries such as India, Mexico and South Korea pay less than children from English-speaking countries such as the US, UK and Canada.

Source of history:

Materials provided Aarhus University. The original was written by Jakob Binderup. Note: Content can be edited by style and length.

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