A colicky baby evokes a lot of sympathy at first and then he/she starts to wear you down. To know how to handle this situation, read the following article.
A colicky baby is always tough to handle. A baby’s cries might seem ‘cute’ at first but watching the baby squirm in discomfort/hunger/pain is never a fun task for parents or people witnessing it. The instinct is to pacify the baby as fast as possible. If that is how the general instinct is, then imagine the kind of mind games a baby’s constant crying can lead to. A baby that cries for more than 3-4 hours everyday, most days of the week, for at least 3 continuous weeks is termed as a colicky baby. Most babies go through this stage known as colic which starts approximately at 4 or 6 weeks after birth and lasts till the baby is 3 months old. After which it passes away on its own.
Even though this condition is perfectly normal, having a baby who has colic is not a very pleasant experience. Furthermore, it can also drive the parents to cast aspersions on their methods of baby care. But that need not be the case. Let us see what some of the symptoms of a baby that suffers from colic are and then go on to see how to calm him/her.
Symptoms of a Baby Suffering from Colic
All babies cry because that is their only means of communication. But if a baby cries in spite of all its physiological needs being fulfilled, then there is a chance that he/she might be suffering from colic. A baby with colic will exhibit the following behavior patterns.
- Constant and loud crying that usually happens at the same time everyday and in some cases after a particular activity, like after meals.
- The act of crying is a distinct sign of colicky babies because it is very harsh, piercing, loud and nothing that one does seems to pacify it.
- The belly might seem swollen and prominent.
- The baby may pass a lot of gas by lifting its legs or head.
- The baby shows signs of being irritable.
- He/she exhibits a lot of pain and general discomfort is apparent.
- The baby acts extremely fussy when it comes to eating or becomes fussy as soon as he/she consumes food.
- The baby’s face gets red.
- He/she might pull up its knees to the stomach and then stretch them immediately.
- The baby also clenches the hands into a fist.
- Her/his feet get cold.
- There is a lot of difficulty falling asleep and even when it happens, he/she wakes up quite often. It is a very disturbed sleep.
- The baby usually cries around late afternoon and early evening.
The causes of colic in a baby have been zeroed in on its immature digestive system, certain foods that a breastfeeding mother ingests (spicy food), and the swallowing of air during feeds or crying sessions.
Colicky Baby Relief
A parent who has a colicky baby would want nothing more than to calm him/her down. For those parents then, here are some of the things that you can do in order to provide the much-needed relief for your baby and you.
It has been studied that when the baby is in the womb, it is aware of its surroundings. Therefore, the prenatal environment of the baby can be sufficiently determined and molded the way the parents deem right. There are special music collections that have been especially created for a pregnant woman, those which have a calming influence on the baby’s mind and soul. And it has been found that when the baby listens to the same music after birth, the soothing effect continues to about a calming effect and pacify the baby.
Many people wonder about gripe water pros and cons, but it has been the experience of many parents that gripe water not only soothes a baby’s colic but also relieves newborn acid reflux, gas, baby teething, stomach cramps and hiccups.
Giving your baby a massage has shown to work wonders for the baby. Gently massage the stomach, legs, back and hands. Pull the knees to the baby’s stomach gently, press them in, keep them there for about 3 seconds and release. This helps to relieve gas, if any.
Most babies love some form of motion or the other, so put the baby in a cradle, or walk around the room with the baby. You could also take the baby for a drive.
Check Your Diet
If breastfeeding is your mode of feeding the baby, then it might be the mother’s diet that is the culprit. If you find that the baby starts crying after it has been fed, then it could be your food intake that is to be blamed. Eliminate beans, spicy foods, onions and beverages from your diet and check for the effect. So also, don’t do any sort of feeding that leads to over feeding the baby.
Burp Your Baby
Burping your baby becomes extremely important because gas can play havoc on their systems. Burp the baby after every feeding, and in case of bottle feeding, try to eliminate the air that goes in.
Lessen the Stimulants
A colicky baby can be pacified more easily when there are no overcrowding stimuli in the area. So no bright lights, moving objects, noisy people in the room. Take the baby to a quiet and low lit room, wrap him/her in a blanket and sing a lullaby.
Dealing with a colicky baby requires a lot of patience and skill, but these colic remedies should help you do the trick just fine. All the best!