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Never shake a baby


If you shake a baby violently, the head is thrown back and forth, the blood vessels under the hard cornea are torn off. Then brain bleeding starts which can be very large. This type of brain haemorrhage often causes severe permanent brain damage in the child, if it survives. Never shake a baby.

When you can't cope as a parent

As the parent of a small baby who screams inconsolably and never seems to be able to fall asleep, it is common to get angry. Everyone gets angry with lack of sleep, and when the child screams despite everything you do for the baby, it is a common feeling that you give up.

When you feel it happening, you have to take responsibility to protect your baby from your anger.

A baby does not die from screaming

Put away your baby. Close the door. Catch your breath. Call someone. But never shake.

Shaking a baby is often fatal

A baby does not die from screaming alone. But there is a high risk that your baby will die from brain bleeding if you shake. Brain bleeding leads to increased pressure in the brain and respiratory arrest. If you have shaken your baby - call an ambulance.

Shaking a baby can lead to brain hemorrhage and respiratory arrest
Ask for help

When you can't take care of your child: ask for help. Put the child away in his bed or on the floor and go into another room. Think about whether you have the opportunity to get help. If the child has another parent, it is time to call that parent home. Can you call the BVC nurse? Maybe you have a sibling, a parent, a mother-in-law, a neighbor or a friend you trust. Call and ask for help!

If you have no one at all who can help you: come to the ER and explain the situation.

If it's daytime, you can always call the municipality's social services. They can give you the best support.

Will social services take the child away from me?

If you shake the child so that it gets brain damage, the Social Services should decide that someone else can take care of the child. But if you seek help that you can no longer cope with the child, then you show that you are a responsible and wise parent who knows your own limitations. It says a lot towards you getting to take care of your child but with extra support. Forcibly disposing of a child is the very last solution that the Social Services rarely use.

Rocking hard in the pram

It is not possible to cause damage to infants by rocking the pram hard, or driving it over a curb. It is precisely the repeated uncontrollable tossing of the child's head back and forth that causes injuries.

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14 thoughts on “Skaka aldrig en bebis”

  1. När barn ligger i vagnen eller sitter i babyskydd på vagnen eller i bilen som körs på ojämnt underlag kan ju huvudena ibland skaka till lite från sida till sida, men detta är ju med stöd bakom huvudet i form av madrass eller babyskyddet, kan det vara farligt? Eller är det just när inget stöd finns alls det är farligt?

    Thanks for a great blog!

    1. Att huvudet skumpar i vagnen eller babyskydd är inte alls farligt. Det är just när inget stöd alls finns och huvudet slängs våldsamt fram och tillbaka som det är farligt.

  2. Malin Engström


    Tack för en givande text. Jag är mamma till tre barn och med det tredje har jag varit EXTREMT orolig. Under hela graviditeten var jag nojig över allt från kost till miljögifter. Stress och oro går hand i hand. Jag gick in i väggen och blev sjukskriven för utmattning i tredje månaden…

    Sedan vår dotter (tredje barnet) föddes förra våren har jag varit jätterädd för att jag ska skaka henne. Jag är en temperamentsfull person och tappar lätt tålamodet. Stressen under småbarnstiden följande sömnbrist har minst sagt tärt på mig.

    Nu till min fråga. För ett par veckor sedan hade vi en dålig natt då jag bara sov ett par timmar. Natten efter vaknade dottern, som nu är ett år och tre månade, och skrek. Jag gick ut ur sovrummet och satte ner henne på golvet varpå hon skrek ännu mer. Jag vet att jag ryckte upp henne i famnen rätt bryskt men sen minns jag inte exakt vad jag gjorde. Jag är rädd att jag skakade henne men jag har ju inget minne av vad som hände exakt. Hon tystade efter en stund och vi kunde sen somna om (hon sover med mig i vår dubbelsäng).

    Jag kan inte släppa denna händelse och jag oroas över att jag inte minns vad som hände. Kan jag ha skadat henne? Hon var som vanligt dagen efter. Jag borde väl ha märkt något om hon blivit skakad?

    Tacksam för svar och vägledning.

    Med vänliga hälsningar,
    En orolig trebarnsmor

    1. Hej Malin! Ledsen att du fått vänta på svar. Du kan absolut inte ha skadat henne av det du beskriver.
      Warm greetings,

  3. What is the difference between shaking and rocking too hard? How do you know if you are hard-handed? Is it dangerous to rock the baby quickly in the arms when it has its head against the arm? That but rock both the child and the child as well?

    1. Shake is shake violently so head turns back and forth. If you just hold your head and have your baby's body against it, you can move vigorously without risking any harm to the child.

  4. What you realize more and more how easy you have had it, the first year with our daughter we had a sick screaming night and they were on the 5th day when the milk ran out properly. My partner is morning girl and I have evening spikes so from the very beginning I have taken evenings and nights and he morns so we have very rarely felt that we did not get enough sleep. I believe in good communication between the parents and above all that more men must understand that they are not entitled to more sleep because they work. I think all my girlfriends say their husbands never take the kids because they work and have to sleep !? I usually contend with "and what do you do then ?, you lie down and sleep on the days because your need for sleep is not as important"

    1. Zero, thank goodness! I have seen two safe cases and three suspects during my time in Pediatrics, all at a clinic with pediatric neurosurgical and pediatric neurosurgical care. The clinic where I work now does not have that assignment, so we certainly see fewer cases.

  5. Well, having children is not just a shimmering happiness! Gods should know that! If it is your expectations, well then it will conflict with reality and your expectations! I imagine that could be one of the reasons why a parent strikes or shakes their child. It was not at all what you imagined, you did not get a little angel sleeping in the cradle. Having children I think is a life crisis. Crisis for me is something positive, that one is developing! Life is never going to be exactly the same again, in a good way, but the change and change is incredibly big in the beginning. No, you will not be allowed to sleep and sleep will be a short-term for a long time to come! That's how it is to become a parent, that's our lot. It's tough, but worth all the sleepless nights! I think it is so important to talk about the fact that at first it may not feel happy at all and that the child can actually scream for the first three, four months. I am at home with my fourth child and for me it is natural that it is so, but for a firstborn it can come as a shock if no one talked about it. I believe in meeting the tired parents and helping them create the conditions to cope. Don't put on guilt and shame, but just confirm their feelings. It's a pain to become a parent. What are some resources in one's environment that can help relieve stress? A few hours of sleep, a cup of coffee, and a shower can do wonders and all of a sudden you feel like a new person and endure a few sleepless nights to… 

    1. Thank you, what kindly written. I was happy :-D! I believe in high ceilings and that all feelings, thoughts, and thoughts are allowed. Facing their fears makes them disappear. Pushing them away prevents us from living! It should be an open and permissive climate, I believe in meeting and talking, talking, talking :)!

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