Dr. Robert Hamilton is a well-loved pediatrician at Pacific Ocean Pediatrics in Santa Monica, California. Hamilton says it’s been a joy to work with newborns and infants throughout the last thirty years, during which he’s developed what he calls “The Hold,” a technique that calms a crying baby.
Those first few days and months of life can be a little overwhelming, to say the least, for parents and infants. If you’ve ever tried to bring a tiny baby to a doctor’s visit, you know how stressful and, well, how loud it can be. Hamilton also adds that it can be challenging for doctors to successfully relay important caretaking information to new parents when their sweet one is crying loudly or is difficult to soothe.
For example, the babies in this video have just been given their shots and are less than happy afterward. Hamilton uses this opportunity to show the babies’ parents the four steps he uses to quiet the little ones.
First, Dr. Hamilton folds the baby’s right arm across his chest, then the left arm follows. Next, the good doctor secures both arms with his hand as he cradles the baby’s chin. His other hand gently holds the baby’s diaper area and rocks and shifts the baby just slightly.
Lastly, Hamilton points out that infants this young need to be held somewhat forward; he recommends a 45-degree angle so that the person holding the baby can be sure to stabilize the baby’s head gently.
Parents watch in awe as the veteran pediatrician can calm each crying little one almost immediately.
The Hold is a technique worth passing on to parents with new babies. At the end of his demonstration, Dr. Hamilton mentions that this can help get parents through the first three months, but after that three-month mark, most babies usually get too big to use this technique safely.