What Can Your Baby's Cries Tell You?


Don’t you wish you could distinguish between your newborn’s cries? If you could tell the “I'm hungry" cry apart from the “I need to be changed” cry or the “I don’t want to be in this sink without my comfy Blooming Bath bathtub" cry.

Researchers are currently studying how to tell the difference between those different types of cries (well at least the first two). Scientists from Brown University and the Women & Infant Hospital in Providence have created a computer program that analyzes a baby’s cries.

The program takes into account up to 80 different factors including pitch and volume of the cries. Researchers are working to track patterns in the sounds, which they hope could one day help doctors catch medical conditions a newborn might have so it can be treated earlier.

While it’s too soon in the research to be able to determine specific medical issues from different cries alone, right now researchers are able to get information on whether cries mean something with a baby’s nervous system is amiss and, if a cry is pain or non-pain related.

The pitch of a cry is controlled by nerves in the brain and babies who have very high-pitched cries could be signaling that the nervous system is stressed or over stimulated. Down the road, researchers think they may be able to use what they find in the hospital setting as a screening for doctors and nurses.

So, until there is a computer program you can access to decode your baby’s cries at home, we advise picking up a Blooming Bath for babies for bath time. It’s shown to significantly limit the amount of crying that takes place at bath time.


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