You know that dreadful “hour(s)” right before dinnertime with a newborn baby, and sometimes last up till 9 or 10pm, give or take? It is very common for your baby to be fussy during the evening hours. These are referred to the as the “witching hour”, which can last into “witching hours”, normally between 6-10pm at night. It may not last the entire time or can last a bit longer. Some babies may not even experience the witching hour, but most babies have a few weeks of it or a few weeks can turn into 6-9 weeks on average of the “witching hour(s)”.
The fussiness usually begins around the second to third week of life, and usually mellows out between 6-10 weeks (+/-). To ease the witching hour, and make it a little better for parents to handle these “hours”, here are a few things that could help.
Try cluster feeding in the evening. If you are on a 3 hr eat play sleep schedule, after the 4pm feed, add in a cluster feed at 6pm and 8pm and put straight to bed after the 8pm feed. Around that dinner “witching hour”, put baby in a sling or Ergo like carrier and make dinner or clean up the house with baby on you. If light outside, go for a walk around the neighborhood or try a warm bath for the baby and a nice baby massage at that witching hour before bedtime.
As much as the witching hour may frustrate you, don’t stress out about it. It is only a phase and wont be forever. This phase shall pass. And it may not be everyday, so don’t go crazy why going to bed was easy one night and the next night, it took forever for baby to go to sleep. You are not alone, and the “witching hour” phase shall pass. If you need more help, contact EatPlaySleep for more help.