Why Do Babies Pull Ears When Tired?

Why Do Babies Pull Ears When Tired

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Babies are so cute and sometimes extremely curious, but sometimes they do things that leave us scratching our heads, like when they aggressively rub their faces or pull their ears when they’re tired.

The first time I noticed my baby do this, I wasn’t so concerned until it repeated quite often. I asked my pediatrician about it and was assured that it was normal. Babies often pull their ears when they’re tired or cranky, and it’s something that usually causes parents to worry. But why do babies do this? Is it a sign of something serious?

The main reason why babies pull their ears when they are tired is that they are in the stage where they feel the need to explore their bodies and the world around them. It doesn’t always indicate a health problem.

Sometimes, it is hard to figure out why babies exhibit strange behaviors; note that babies are in a developmental stage and need time to explore a lot. This blog post will investigate why babies pull their ears when tired and what it means for their overall health.

baby face

Understanding The Connection Between Ear Pulling In Babies And Tiredness

Many parents wonder why their babies pull, tug, and rub at their ears, but this behavior is common in infants, especially between 2 and 6 months of age. It is usually just a reflex and does not indicate pain or discomfort.

It can be a sign that they are tired or need some comfort and soothing, so it may help to try snuggling, rocking, or singing to your baby to provide some relief. Babies explore their bodies with their hands, often finding that pulling on their ears feels good due to the sensation it creates.

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This behavior is normal but can be concerning for some parents. It’s important to understand that tired babies are especially prone to this behavior, as it can help them to soothe themselves whenever they are exhausted.

This behavior can also be an indication of teething, when babies pull their ears it may be a sign that they’re trying to relieve pressure inside their ear canals and provide some relief from the pain caused by emerging teeth.

That being said, if your baby is tired and continues to pull on their ears even after sleep has been encouraged or seems to be experiencing pain, it could indicate a more serious problem that a medical professional should address, and it would be wise to consult your pediatrician immediately.

What To Do To Stop Babies From Pulling Ear

If you’ve ever had a baby, you know that they often pull their ears when they get tired. It can be quite frustrating and even painful for them! But don’t worry, there are some simple things you can do to help stop your little one from pulling their ear when tired;

Why Do Babies Hump Themselves to Sleep?
Source: Newborn Baby

1. Ensure That Baby Gets Enough Sleep

First of all, make sure your baby is getting enough sleep. Babies need plenty of rest to stay healthy and happy, so ensure they have regular naps throughout the day and a good night’s sleep. If your baby isn’t getting enough sleep, it could be causing them discomfort which leads to ear-pulling as a way of self-soothing.

2. Use Distractions

Try distracting your baby with something else when they start pulling their ear. Offer them toys or books to play with or sing songs together, anything that will take their mind off the urge to pull on their ears.

3. Give The Baby A Massage

You could also give them a gentle massage around the area where they’re pulling, this might help relax any tension in the muscles and ease any pain or discomfort caused by tugging on the ears too much.

Pro Tip: If none of these methods seem to work then it may be worth speaking to your doctor or health visitor. They can check for any underlying medical conditions that could be causing your baby discomfort and advise you on the best course of action to take.

What Are The Causes Of Tiredness In Babies?

Babies can often seem tired and listless, but uncovering the reasons behind it can help parents provide better care. Common causes of tiredness in babies include insufficient sleep, dehydration, illness, or a new environment or activity level.

Besides the common causes of exhausted babies, there are other factors that may contribute as well. For example, hunger, feeling overwhelmed, or being overly stimulated can lead to tiredness in infants.

Fortunately, identifying the underlying cause can help parents provide their babies with the nutrition and support they need. With this knowledge, parents can create a better routine or diet for their exhausted baby and rest easier knowing that their little one is getting all the care they need.

When Should Be Concerned About Ear Pulling In Babies?

Ear pulling is usually just a sign of exploration or self-soothing behavior in babies and toddlers. Babies often explore their bodies by touching different parts of themselves, including their ears. This type of behavior is normal and nothing to worry about as long as they don’t seem to be in pain or discomfort while doing so.

However, if your child seems to be tugging at their ears more than usual or appears to be in pain while doing so, then it may indicate an underlying problem such as an ear infection or other illness like the flu or cold.

If your child has been exposed to someone with these illnesses recently then it would make sense for them to pull on their ears due to the pressure buildup from fluid buildup inside the middle ear space behind the eardrum which can cause discomfort and even pain depending on how severe the infection is.

In addition, if your baby is tugging at their ears and has a fever or other symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhea, or difficulty sleeping then it’s important to seek medical attention right away. It could be something more serious like meningitis which can cause hearing loss if not treated promptly.


All in all, it’s important to be aware of the common reasons why babies pull their ears when tired. Knowing the signs and symptoms of ear infections can help you catch them early and get your baby the proper medical treatment they need. Paying attention to your baby and how they act when tired can be an important part of keeping them healthy and happy.

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