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While you’re thrilled with the addition of your latest family member, new problems might soon arise: that of communication, and understanding exactly what your little angel is asking for. After all, don’t all cries sound the same?

Not really. Babyspeak is its own type of language – so it’s not impossible for parents (who spend the most time with their babies) to get the hang of things with time.

Here’s a quick guide to communicate with your baby, broken down into their various areas of need.

Ma, I’m Hungry

Babies primarily cry to communicate a need they might have. And when they’re hungry, they tend to make specific sounds that are unlike other cries. Over time, with close attention and listening, you might be able to identify it.

If you struggle with identifying different cries, though, watch what your baby does. If they’re hungry, they’ll start sucking on fingers or their entire hand. They might turn their head in a certain direction with their mouth open, as if looking for something to latch onto. That should make it clear what they really want.

Feeling Windy (Or If The Diaper Is Soiled)

Ever felt bloated without finding relief? It can be quite uncomfortable – which is why your baby might seem distracted or unable to engage with the toy you’re dangling in front of them. And if the pain gets too much, it will show on your baby’s face.

If your baby’s diaper is soiled and wet, it should be easy to figure it out – especially if your baby hates the feeling of a soiled diaper. He won’t be in a playful mood, and might make uncomfortable sounds. Once they start squirming, you know it’s a soiled diaper – so pick them up and head off to the changing room!

Lonely… I’m So Lonely

When your baby is lonely or bored out of his mind, the signs to look out for are related to where he’s looking. If your baby looks right at you with wide eyes, it’s not a staring contest. Rather, it’s a way of communicating with you that he needs your company and some entertainment. An alternative is when your baby starts looking around at almost everything. Time to get the funny faces out!

If your baby’s a talker, he or she might start making little noises to call out to you, so keep your ears trained for it.

Time To Hit The Bed

When your baby is tired or in need of a good rest, it should be fairly obvious: her eyes will be unfocused, and maybe even half-closed by the time you notice. Sleepy babies won’t squirm so much, nor will they make a huge fuss, so just hold your little angel tight or put them back to bed. Don’t be so alarmed if your baby doesn’t respond to your words or funny faces. It might just be time to recharge for a bit.

When interacting with your baby, it’s important to pay close attention and watch them as you go through various activities with them. Observe how your newborn responds when you talk to them, play with them, or even change their diapers.

At first glance it might seem like all they do is cry for everything, but a closer look will tell you a different story. Babies can communicate, too, and it’s up to you to figure out what yours is asking for.

With time, you’ll be an expert at babyspeak with your child.

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