What is Purple crying and why does it occur in Babies?

purple crying

What is Purple Crying?

Purple Crying or Colic is the name given, for the period where the babies cry continuously. This colic or persistent crying is not so serious situation. In case if the baby still does not calm down, even after a long time then it is essential to consult the doctor. Though not all the babies but most of them go through this phase. Parents need not get worried about this Colic as it is a simple phase in the life of babies. The researches and theories suggest that Colic is that phase for the babies where there is a brain development.

Is purple crying real?

crying baby

All the babies go through this stage. It is proved that purple crying is observed in almost every baby but with varying intensity. So, there are no researches that say purple crying is false. Though there are no specific reasons for this period of crying, still it is found in all the babies. There are programs to bring the awareness among the parents.

The intention behind the period of purple crying programs is to help the parents and their babies to find the ways of soothing. Babysitters or parents need not worry about this situation rather need to soothe them in a simpler way by talking while carrying them in hands. This type of soothing will definitely have positive results because the sense of touch gives them the responsibility. It helps in calming down the baby.

Purple crying symptoms:

The purple crying period is not like another crying where the babies are uncomfortable and want their parents to have a look at them. This crying occurs regularly up to 3months only the severity differs. In this period of crying, babies will cry without any reason but regularly that means daily in some cases.

According to some researches it is stated as the normal part of the development in the child life. The babies will be gradually growing out of this stage. Slowly, the crying reduces. It is much important for them to cry. It is also one of the important factors that help in the growth of the baby because it is the indication for feeding, nappy change or for carrying them.

In the period of purple crying, it is highly essential to remember that never shake the baby, rather try to soothe them. As there are no reasons besides this type of crying, so there are no medicines given to the children, unless and until something is wrong or serious. If the baby is crying more and a parent cannot tolerate, this cry then they need to just follow the below tips.

  • Put the baby in a cradle or in a safe place for some time or handle to someone who can take for few hours
  • Try to relax and come back in a little time
  • It is important to take care that no one should shake the baby while crying rather walk, talk or comfort them
  • This is just a period and will come to an end very soon.
  • The purple crying programs will help the parents.

Period of Purple Crying:


Parents of a newborn need to understand that colic is one phase which is much common in infants. The word ‘PURPLE’ specifically mention the time period of crying of the baby. The word period of ‘PURPLE’ means that it does not remain forever, but will be ending after the certain time frame. This word specifically means the period of crying along with the features observed during this purple crying period. So, purple Crying stands for:

P – It indicates Peak of Crying

U – It indicates Unexpected

R –It indicates Resists Soothing

P – It indicates Pain-like Face

L –It indicates Long Lasting

E – It indicates Evening

The Purple crying will be at the peak levels when the baby is in their two months of age and thereafter decreases from 3 to 5 months of age. Though all babies cry at this age the intensity of crying will vary from one baby to the other one. It means that some babies cry severely while others may not at the same age. So, parents need not get tensed in this stage by seeing the high intensity of crying.

Purple Crying Soothing:

Soothing is the most important thing that helps in comforting the baby when crying too extensively. Though Purple Crying is common in all babies, soothing in this period makes the baby calm down and have a good sleep for some time. There are various soothing methods people employ in order to stop the crying baby, each one may use their own methods of soothing.  In the period of Purple crying, sometimes it may be difficult to control them, how much ever a parent tries to soothe, still, there will not be any change. It does not mean that they are sick but it is just an unsoothable crying bout a baby is experiencing.

Whenever crying is intense, then even soothing does not solve the problem, rather at times the crying of the baby becomes even more. The parents need not worry about this situation of the babies, because they sense all the emotions of their parents or caretakers while shooting. The calmness of parents helps the babies to calm down easily rather than the angry or frustrated feelings.

Purple crying curve:

purple crying baby

The purple crying curve is the graph that indicates the time period of baby crying and the age at which they cry. This curve lets the parents know the age at which the infants are likely to cry more intensely and where they will be crying less. However, the purple crying will always differ from one baby to the other and will never be the same for two babies or even in siblings. The crying of the baby increases slowly in the first few days to the second month then reaches its peak level and slowly starts to decrease in the 3 to 5 months. Whenever the baby crying reaches its highest point it is an intolerable situation for the parents and make them more frustrated and get angry.

Even some babies reach their peak level of crying at end of two months that is 8 weeks of age, while others at 10 weeks of age. According to the crying curve, this is divided into three parts that are

  • Fusing
  • Crying
  • Inconsolable crying

The above is the crying curve of all the babies in general, where the crying time period in one day and from when it starts after the baby born till it ends. This is an example crying curve of the babies, categorising into high crier, average crier and low crier.

How long does the period of purple crying last?

The Period of Purple crying will not long last for several months. It continues to come to an end at the age of five months in most of the babies. However, it will be quite bothering situation whenever a baby cries continuously for more than 5 to 10 minutes. It is the time for the parents to be calm, relax and try to sooth the baby in all the possible ways they can. The most important thing is to remember that it will come to an end very soon.

The only solution is soothing them in all the best ways such as feeding, carrying, walking or changing of a nappy or any other. The best  thing is to take advice from the programs of the period of the purple crying.


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