Infant crying and abuse
Child abuse and neglect are important causes of child morbidity and death. We assessed potentially detrimental parental actions induced by infant crying in 3259 infants aged 1-6 months, in the Netherlands. In infants aged 6 months, 5·6% (95% CI 4·2-7·0) of parents reported having smothered, slapped, or shaken their baby at least once because of its crying. The risks of detrimental actions were highest for parents from non-industrialised countries, those with either no job or a job with short working hours, and those who judged their infant's crying to be excessive. Clinicians should be aware of the risks of abuse in children known to cry a lot and should target interventions at parents to help them cope with this crying.
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Lancet, 364 (9442), 1340-1342