Babies cry more in Britain, Canada and Italy, than the rest of the world 6 years ago

Babies cry more in Britain, Canada and Italy, than the rest of the world

Babies cry more in Britain, Canada and Italy, than the rest of the world according to new research by the University of Warwick.

Psychologists have created the world's first universal charts for normal amount of crying in babies during first three months and found that babies cry more in Britain, Canada, Italy and Netherlands than in other countries.

Professor Dieter Wolke in Warwick's Department of Psychology undertook a meta-analysis of studies involving almost 8,700 infants and calculated the average of how long babies fuss and cry per twenty-four hours across different cultures in the first twelve weeks of their lives.

He found that, on average, babies around the world cry for around two hours per day in the first two weeks, peak at two and a quarter hours mins at six weeks, and crying reduces to one hour and ten minutes by week twelve. However, some infants were found to cry for as little as thirty minutes, and others for over five hours, in twenty-four hours.

The highest levels of colic (defined as crying for more than three hours a day for at least three days a week in a baby) were found in the UK (28% of infants at one-two weeks), Canada (34.1% at three-four weeks of age) and Italy (20.9% at eight-nine weeks of age).

Good news for parents in Denmark, Germany and Japan though, who have the least amount of crying and fussing to deal with.


The current definitions for determining whether a baby is crying too much and suffering from colic, are the Wessel criteria, which were formulated in the 1950s.

Professor Wolke says that, as childcare and the family unit has largely transformed over the last half century and across different cultures, new universal guidelines were needed for modern parents and health professionals to assess normal and excessive levels of crying in babies:

"Babies are already very different in how much they cry in the first weeks of life - there are large but normal variations. We may learn more from looking at cultures where there is less crying and whether this may be due to parenting or other factors relating to pregnancy experiences or genetics.

The new chart of normal fuss/cry amounts in babies across industrialised countries will help health professionals to reassure parents whether a baby is crying within the normal expected range in the first three months or shows excessive crying which may require further evaluation and extra support for the parents."

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