Managing an unsettled baby

We appreciate that although having a baby is an exciting time, it can also be a time of anxiety and worry. Whether you were planning to breast or bottle feed, Salford clinicians have developed a dedicated pathway to help support and manage any symptoms you or your baby may be experiencing. This may be that you are worried that your baby is unsettled during or after feeding, seems to be in pain or you are concerned about your baby’s bowel habits.

Baby and mother

During the final stages of your pregnancy you may be introduced to your health visitor, who will be there to support you once your baby is born.

Pregnant woman's belly

Health visitors are specialist public health nurses who can support you with any concerns you may have with your baby. If you have any worries about the birth of your baby please contact your midwife.

Meanwhile please take a look at the following links which may answer some of your questions:

Once your baby is born your health visitor will be on hand to support you with any issues you may have.

If you are breastfeeding and feel you need further support please contact your midwife or health visitor.


Here are a couple of resources that you may find useful:

If you are bottle feeding and feel you need further support please contact your midwife or health visitor.

Baby being bottle fed

Learn about responsive bottle feeding.

If you are a dad and would like some extra support you can either contact your health visitor or you can access peer support by visiting

If concerned you can ask your health visitor to assess your baby’s symptoms and advise you on the best course of action. This may or may not involve a treatment plan. For some babies, a simple adjustment to their feeding/routine is sometimes all it takes.

Mother and baby

By getting the correct advice early from your health visitor will help quickly identify and hopefully resolve any issues that you and your baby may be experiencing.

Please contact your health visitor with any infant feeding concerns so that they can provide you with an individualised care plan.

Babies cry for all kinds of reasons, it is their way of communicating with you. Some cry more than others and is no way a reflection upon you.

Baby crying

Click the links below for possible reasons and how you may be able to help.

How to sooth a crying baby

If you are concerned that your baby appears to be unwell then the link below may provide some common explanations.

Baby check app

You can find more information as to why your baby might crying and advice for parents at ICON.

If you are concerned then please contact your health visitor or telephone 111 for advice. If you have urgent concerns about your baby’s health, you should telephone 999.

Being sick small amounts, called posseting is completely normal during or after a feed. Some babies can posset more than others. If your baby is otherwise settled then there is no need for you to be concerned.  If however, you are worried that your baby is vomiting a large amount then you should ring your health visitor or GP.


Please click here for information on spitting up vs vomitting

Some babies have what we call “gastric reflux” where the acid from your baby’s tummy may come back up again. This causes your baby to be restless and unsettled.

Read more about reflux in babies on the NHS website.

It is quite normal for some babies to appear a little unsettled during a bowel movement and is thought to be a reaction to the sensation your baby feels whilst having a poo.

If your baby’s poo is soft and easily passed then this is not constipation.

Baby wearing diaper and drinking milk

Alternatively, if your baby’s poo is hard and small and your baby is very unsettled then this may mean your baby is constipated. If you are formula feeding then it is important you follow the manufacturer’s instructions on how to make up your baby’s feeds. It is rare for exclusively breastfed babies to get constipation.

Baby’s bowel habits differ from one baby to another. If however, you are worried that your baby has loose stools or is constipated then please contact your health visitor for advice. Your health visitor will assess your baby’s symptoms and advise you on the best possible action.

Learn more about constipation in babies.