Period of purple crying

Period of purple crying

What is PURPLE crying?

Contrary to what some might think... it is not a case of babies turning purple when they cry!

Dr Ronald Barr, a developmental paediatrician who researched infant crying extensively, developed the phrase ‘the period of PURPLE Crying’.

PURPLE stands for

P = Peak of Crying – usually around 2nd month of age

U = Unexpected crying – crying for no obvious reason

R = Resists soothing – may not stop crying no matter what you do

P = Pain-like face – they may appear like they are in pain even when they are not

L = Long lasting – can last as long as 5 hours a day or more

E = Evening – may cry more in the late afternoon and evening

The period of PURPLE crying begins around two weeks of age and continues until 3-4 months of age. Many parents may interpret the crying as their baby in discomfort or pain, and may feel quite helpless. While ‘colic’ is often diagnosed during this period, it is important to know all babies will go through this phase and it improves as they grow older.

As a General Practitioner, appropriate assessment and recognition of this challenging phase is important to reassure the worried parents. Some tips to sooth a crying baby may include carrying the baby in a carrier, using soothing sounds or white noise, and giving the baby a bath or massage.

At Women Wellness Team, we pride ourselves on providing guidance and support in all areas of parenting including baby settling to assist new parents in their journey through parenthood.