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The Happiest Baby on the Block; Fully Revised and Updated Second Edition: The New Way to Calm Crying and Help Your Newborn Baby Sleep Longer Paperback – October 6, 2015
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"Enlightenment Now: The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress"
Is the world really falling apart? Is the ideal of progress obsolete? Cognitive scientist and public intellectual Steven Pinker urges us to step back from the gory headlines and prophecies of doom, and instead, follow the data: In seventy-five jaw-dropping graphs, Pinker shows that life, health, prosperity, safety, peace, knowledge, and happiness are on the rise. Learn more
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Praise for The Happiest Baby on the Block
“Dr. Karp’s book is fascinating and will guide new parents for years to come.”—Julius Richmond, M.D., Harvard Medical School, former Surgeon General of the United States
“The Happiest Baby on the Block is fun and convincing. I highly recommend it.”—Elisabeth Bing, co-founder of Lamaze International
“Will fascinate anyone who wants to know how babies experience the world, and wants to answer their cries lovingly and effectively.”—The San Diego Union-Tribune
About the Author
Harvey Karp, M.D., is an assistant professor of pediatrics at the USC School of Medicine. He is the bestselling author of The Happiest Baby on the Block, The Happiest Toddler on the Block, and The Happiest Baby Guide to Great Sleep: Simple Solutions for Kids from Birth to 5 Years. Dr. Karp is also a nationally renowned expert in child development, children’s environmental health, and breastfeeding. He lives with his wife in California, and his adult daughter lives in New York.
Top customer reviews
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“I saw this doctor on Oprah YEARS ago... I remember that the audience was full of QUIET, contented babies and I wondered if they were all sedated.
The premise is that human babies are born 3 months BEFORE they are really developed because of the size of their heads. Therefore, the fist 100 days of their life is virtually a "fourth trimester" in which the baby needs constant vigilance and caring.
He offers "cuddle cure"... 5 steps done in sequence to calm a baby and simulate life in the womb: Swaddling (firmly), Side/Stomach, Ssshhhing, Swaying, Sucking. They are combined and should match the VIGOR of any crying to immediately pacify the baby.
Actually... this all made sense to me and most importantly.... IT WORKS!
Author: Harvey Karp
Publisher: Bantam Dell
Date Read- 5/21/09 to 5/26/09
The FASTEST way to succeed in stopping your baby's cycle of crying is to MEET THEIR LEVEL OF INTENSITY. Only after your screaming baby pauses for a few moments can you gradually slow your motion, soften your shushing and guide them from frenzy to soft landing.
The best colic-calmers say that soothing an infant is like dancing with them in the lead. These talented people pay close attention to the vigor of ther 5 "S's"
1st S- Swaddling
This TURNS on the calming effect by stopping the Moro reflex (hand jerking/flailing) that helps them to pay attention to the other S's.
Lay your child on their side or place them in your arms on their stomach. This prevents them from feeling that they are falling.
3rd S- Shhhh
You have to do it as LOUD AS YOUR BABIES CRY and close to their ear. It stimulates the sound of the womb. It can be replaced by white noise.
4th S- Sway
Support your babies head and neck and wiggle their HEAD with fast, tiny movements (like you are shivering). Once they are entranced, you can move to a slower swinging motion.
5th S- Sucking
This works best after the other S's have calmed. A finger or pacifier work and can be eliminated after the 3rd month.
In a 1986 study by Tiffany Field, massaged babies gained 47% more then babes who did not have the same touch. The same babies had higher IQ's a year later.
1. Prepare for pleasure. Warm the room, dim the lights, play soft music.
2. Bring Yourself to the moment. Sit comfortably, take 5 slow deep breaths and allow yourself to be present for the experience. Its an exchange of love in one fleeting, tender moment of time.
3. Speak to your baby with your hands. Always try to keep one hand in contact with the skin and talk to them about what you are doing and what your hopes are for their life, or sing a lullaby. Let your massage strokes move in synchronicity with your calm breathing.
4. Reward your babies tummy. Bicycle their legs then firmly push both knees to their belly and hld them there for 20 seconds. Massage the tummy in firm, clockwise, circular strokes - starting at their right lower belly, up and across the top of their tummy and ending at their left lower side (this traces their colon and intestines)
5. Follow you baby's signals.
Top 10 survival Tips for Parents of New Babies
1. Trust Yourself. You are the Latest in the Unbroken Chain of the World's Top Parents.
2. Lower Your Expectations.
3. Accept All the Help You Can Get
4. Get Your Priorities Straight: Should You take a break or do the dishes?
5. Be Flexible. It is better to bend than snap.
6. Know Thyself. Share how you are feeling.
7. Don't Rock the Cradle to Hard. Know when to take a break.
8. Keep Your Sense of Humor Handy
9. Take Care of Your Spouse
10. Don't Ignore Depression.”
Review by Carrie
As an expectant parent who wants to be well informed, I have a lot of books on my reading list. This took up way more time than it should have. If you're a new/expecting parent, do yourself a favor and find this info for free on the Internet. If you want to buy this as a gift, do the expectant parents a favor and get the DVD or instant video instead.
Before my son was born, I heard that the book is full of obvious advice -- a repackaging of stuff that most people already know. Not so, in our case. Within hours after my son was born, he needed to be soothed, and my husband and I found ourselves imitating the "shushing" we'd seen on the Karp DVD because we truly had no clue other than that. But we didn't have much faith in Dr. Karp at that point. In the book and especially in the DVD, the author seems to spend so much time "selling" the legitimacy and originality of his method that my husband and I were both instinctively distrustful. In my son's first few weeks, we were pretty sure he didn't want to be swaddled, and we had no inclination to follow Dr. Karp's five steps in order and in combination. But my son was a very troubled sleeper, and at some point in the weeks after he was born, I returned to this book and read it very closely, a couple of times over. We tried the five steps and they really helped -- my husband and I joked that we were "Karping" our son. We fell in love with the Miracle Blanket - Baby Swaddling Blanket - Blue, the Graco Lovin' Hug Swing, Barcelona Bluegrass, and the Wubbanub Pacifier - Yellow Duck. As we more fully embraced the ideas in this book, we were able to get our son to stop crying and sleep in a swing, which gave us a leg to stand on in getting him to soothe himself independently and eventually sleep in his crib.
I also really came to appreciate the tone of this book. Before my son was born, I thought it was a little too cutesy for me. But as an exhausted, worried, delirious, first-time mother, Dr. Karp was my best friend. He struck just the right tone: Comforting, reassuring and informative, striking the right balance between giving me advice and telling me to trust my terrific instincts. Even after I had his advice memorized, I found myself turning back to the book, because it was such a comfort.
I highly recommend this to all parents. For parents of new babies, this is a no-brainer purchase. I even recommend this, though, to parents of older babies (maybe up to 4-9 months of age) with sleep troubles. We ended up using many of the Karp soothers for longer than the first few months -- we let our son drive the pace, and let him let go of the five steps as he was ready. My son is now one year old and a great sleeper. Baby sleep decisions are extremely personal, but in my opinion, my son just needed extra help sleeping until he was old enough to soothe himself. This book gave me the tools I needed to help my son, and empowered me to make decisions based on my own observations about my baby.