Fussy babies can make a household very stressful. Knowing how to calm a baby, and having the things you need, will make life much easier for mom and dad, and the rest of the family.
Newborns may get fussy simply because they are insecure outside the womb. The best way to help baby feel secure is to swaddle the baby. During the last months of a pregnancy babies are snugly living inside the womb, with very little room to move. Once a baby is born, that feeling is gone unless we do something to recreate it. To swaddle a baby simply lie baby on a blanket with the top corner folded down and hold baby's arms at his sides while you take one side corner and wrap it around baby, tucking it under baby. Then fold the bottom point up on baby. Finally, take the other side and wrap around baby tucking it under baby's back. Baby is now securely snuggled in the blanket and will often calm down.
A front carrier is also a good tool for soothing a fussy baby. Placing baby in a sling or front carrier places him or her snuggly against mom or dad. While baby's parent can continue many activities with hands free from holding baby, baby is happy and often calms down with the motion of mom or dad walking around.
Babies have a natural need to suck. But, a baby can't constantly take a bottle, so you may try a pacifier. If the pacifier is not allowed, many babies will simply suck their fingers or thumb. Sucking often calms fussy babies almost immediately.
Baby swings which keep baby in constant motion work wonders for calming babies. Of course mom and dad can do this by hand, but a self-propelled swing is so much easier. Not everyone is a proponent of the baby swing, but for some they are a lifesaver.
Bouncy seats which bounce when baby moves or vibrate using batteries are also good alternatives for calming a fussy baby. You can also put baby in the car seat and go for a drive if you have the time. As long as baby remains strapped in, car seats provide good places for baby to hang out if mom is busy and baby is not interested in any other seat. Finally, strolling baby will often calm him; even just being outside may work.
Whatever it takes to calm a fussy baby is usually welcome. Any of the above are good alternatives, and you probably have most of them at home anyway.