Study: Canada is a Bigger Country of Cry Babies on Average

This might be why your baby is crying, eh?

My first son was a great sleeper. After the initial first three months of waking every few hours, he became the dream baby. We would put him down at night, and he would wake ten hours later making sweet cooing sounds until we got him from his crib. He also napped twice a day like clockwork. I thought I was a really, really good parent, and I apologize to any new mothers I ever gave advice to, because it turns out I wasn’t this amazingly great parent who was a baby whisperer.

I was just really, really lucky.

Cue, baby No. 2: a baby who refused to sleep from day one. Literally. After he was born, this little scamper stayed awake for the next eight hours or so. Nurses came into our room to see this baby who was still awake and would make comments along the line of how newborns typically fall back to sleep quite soon after birth and they were surprised he was still awake. 

It was my first warning of things to come.

This sweet brown-eyed baby of mine slept for 30 minute stretches at a time, with his longest being about two hours late in the evening, and when he wasn’t trying to kill us through sleep deprivation, he was screaming. Google wasn’t really big back then, but if it had been, you can guarantee my search history would have contained the phrase, ‘why won’t my baby stop screaming’ in all caps.

Well, according to a study published in the Journal of Pediatrics, what was wrong is that he’s Canadian, eh?

Lead author of the study, Dieter Wolke from the University of Warwick, collected 28 studies from Australia, Canada, Europe, Japan and the United States to look at the behaviours of healthy infants in the first three months of life. Turns out, Canada is a country of cry-babies.

Average Canuck babies spend about 2.5 hours a day crying while overall, the average baby spent about 2 hours crying. And as any mother who has walked up and down a hallway late at night with an inconsolable infant knows, that half hour can make or break you. There were days when I survived purely on caffeine and hope.

Thankfully, at about four weeks, the waterworks dry up a bit and return to normal levels of fussiness.

So the next time your wee one is screaming up a storm, know you’re not alone. In the meantime, ear plugs help.

RELATED: This is (Probably) Why Your Baby is Crying