Is your baby having colic? Are you lost for ways to help your baby? Fret not, read on to know more on colic and how you can aid your baby through this phase. Colic is a frustrating episode for parents and an uncomfortable period for babies as there are constantly crying uncontrollably due to the discomfort. It is commonly linked to symptoms such as grimacing, crying like in pain for no apparent reason the same time of the day, drawing up of the legs or arching of the trunk, clenching of the fists and turning all red. This rollercoaster colic ride of screams and cries can take a toll on parents, but it usually subsides within a few months.
If you are sure or you think that your baby might be experiencing colic, there are a few measures you can take to ease the process & help your little one overcome it. So how do we avoid colic?
One of the causes of colic is gas or indigestion which may be due to the feeding method or bottle teat used. A lot of air going into the baby’s system during feeding sessions can cause digestion discomfort as the baby’s digestive system is still weak. If you’re breastfeeding, looking into your diet is vital because what the mother eats is passed on to the baby and can affect them. You might need to work on your latch too. However, if you’re bottle feeding, then you can try to change the method either by feeding the baby upright, feed less but frequently or get an anti-colic bottle teat. Certain formula milks contain specific protein that can interfere with the baby’s digestion process, so you may want to look into changing the formula milk brand too.
Besides that, the way we hold the baby while feeding and after feeding to burp them is equally important. This aids and supports digestion hence holding the baby upright eases the process. You can also massage their back while trying to burp them or rock them a little while walking to relief them.
Mothers can also place their babies on the chest and stroke their back which at the same time allows the mothers to ‘steal’ some rest too. This is a lovely bonding session which not only calms the baby but the mom as well.
Babies who are going through colic, tend to be worked up and stressed out as they are unable to soothe and console themselves. Mothers or caregivers can assist by:
- Living more skin-to-skin contact,
- Providing security by swaddling the baby,
- Singing and massaging,
- Playing some white noise,
- A warm bath, or
- Going for a walk indoors.
Living with a colic baby isn’t the easiest thing to do but it will pass. It doesn’t cause any side-effects to the baby but can be challenging for the parents. Caring for a constantly crying baby is really difficult for the parents who might get overwhelmed with emotions. Ask people around you to help out with the baby when necessary. Do not harm the baby in any way as excessive shaking can cause damage to the brain and in some rare cases, sudden death to the baby. Here are some useful tips to keep in mind about colic:
- Don’t feel bad or at fault because you didn’t cause the colic
- Colic isn’t permanent and will go away eventually
- Colic isn’t an indication that your child is unhealthy