Preventing Gas In Your Baby
You may be able to prevent abdominal gas by not feeding your baby certain foods until they are older. Try these tips.
- Wait to give your baby cow’s milk until he or she is 12 months of age.
Cow’s milk protein can be hard for a baby’s body to break down. And cow’s milk has less iron and vitamins than babies need.
- Wait to give your baby juice until he or she is at least 12 months old.
Juice may cause a baby to have excess gas. Give only a small amount to your child.
- Work with your baby’s doctor.
If the doctor thinks your baby’s food is a source of gas, he or she may recommend a change in what you are feeding your child. For example, many babies younger than 4 months of age can’t digest the starch in cereals.
Gas Drop Gripe Water And Herbal Teas
Gas drops are an over the counter product that can be used on babies with excessive gas or colic. Gas drops contain simethicone which works to break up gas bubbles in your babys stomach. Usually, gas drops are mixed in with breastmilk, formula, or a bit of water and given to baby.
Most research does not support any significant improvement when gas drops are used, but anecdotally many mothers swear by it.
Gripe water and herbal teas
On the other hand, gripe water is considered a more natural option. Gripe water is a supplement made with water and natural herbs known to aid in digestion such as fennel, ginger, and dill seed oil.
There isnt a ton of research supporting its effectiveness, but a few small studies do seem to support the effectiveness of fennel seed extract and mixed herbal teas .
Again, anecdotally, many mamas see a positive effect on their babys gassiness with the use of gripe water.
A note about these remedies
When it comes to these products, I think its important to note that recommendations for babies under 4-6 months old is for a diet of exclusively breastmilk or formula.
Administering gas drops, gripe water, or an herbal tea may do more harm than good on such an immature digestive system thats designed to digest only breastmilk .
For these reasons, many experts, including Kelly Mom, recommend avoiding these remedies.
Tips For Tummy Trouble
Theres nothing worse than an upset baby except maybe an upset baby with tummy trouble! Here at Beech-Nut®, we love helping share ways to keep your baby happy and healthy, so we asked our real moms & dads what they do to help their babies when their tummies hurt due to common problems like gas and constipation. Although you should always consult a pediatrician if you need medical advice, here are 7 tips from our fans about how to help remedy unavoidable bouts of tummy trouble.
Let us know whats worked for your little one by finding us on or . Wed love to hear from you!
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Choose The Right Bottle
Certain bottles are better at preventing gas buildup than others. If youre bottle-feeding, look for a bottle with an anti-colic valve, which is designed to vent air out of the bottle and reduce the air that baby takes in while feeding.
Youll also want a slow-flow nipple, which mimics the flow of milk from a breast and keeps baby from feeding too quickly. Slow-flow nipples make sure that baby wont gulp down too much breastmilk or formula at once, and wont take in as much air as a result.
In addition to this, make sure the bottle nipple is always completely full of milk or formula
Formula Fed Vs Breastfed Babies And Gas
In general, gassiness is usually more significant in bottle-fed babies . However, breastfed babies can also have issues with gas! In general, anything that causes your baby to swallow excess air will result in trapped air, which leads to a gassy baby.
Formula fed babies with gas might be:
- Reacting to the specific formula due to an allergy or intolerance to cows milk protein, lactose, or soy. Your pediatrician can help you determine if this could be the problem
- Having difficulty digesting the formula due to an immature digestive system. In this case, you can try an extensively hydrolyzed formula which breaks the proteins down and makes them easier to digest
- Swallowing too much air while bottle feeding due to an incorrect latch on the bottle, not tipping the bottle fully upright before beginning a feeding, or a nipple with a flow thats too fast
- Constipation due to an immature digestive system
Breastfed babies with gas might be:
- Swallowing too much air due to an incorrect latch
- Swallowing too much air due to a fast letdown
- Reacting to something in moms diet
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Taking A Rectal Temperature
When a baby is constipated, taking the babys rectal temperature with a clean, lubricated thermometer may help them pass stool.
It is important not to use this method very often, as it can make constipation worse. The baby may start not wanting to pass a bowel movement without help, or they may begin to associate having a bowel movement with discomfort, leading them to fuss or cry more during the process.
Anyone who feels as though they often need to use this method to help the baby have a bowel movement should talk to the babys doctor.
As infants may go for extended periods without a bowel movement, it can be hard to tell if they are constipated. Signs that indicate constipation in a baby include:
- infrequent stools that are not soft in consistency
- clay-like stool consistency
- long periods of straining or crying while trying to have a bowel movement
- streaks of red blood in the stool
- lack of appetite
- a hard belly
Signs of constipation in babies vary depending on their age and diet. A normal bowel movement before a baby begins eating solid food should be very soft, almost like the consistency of peanut butter or even looser.
Hard baby stool prior to solid food is the most obvious indication of constipation in babies.
At first, breastfed babies may pass stool often since breast milk is easy to digest. However, once a baby is between 3 and 6 weeks old, they may only pass a large, soft stool once a week and sometimes even less.
Does Burping Help With Gas Pains
In short: Yes, burping may help relieve your babys gas discomfort. We already know to burp our babies after we feed them. But it may help to up your burping game. Try preemptively burping your baby before feeding them. This ensures you can dislodge any gas that would otherwise become trapped in your babys belly as food goes down. Then, give mid-feeding burping a shot, in addition to your post-meal pats.
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How To Prepare For Your Pediatrician Appointment
Some degree of infant gas is to be expectedin fact, a happy, gassy baby is perfectly normal. But if youve implemented the tips above and are worried, or if you think your little one is in pain, call your pediatrician for an appointment.
Follow these tips below before you meet with the pediatrician. Also, when you book the appointment, ask your pediatrician if there is anything additional or specific you should do in preparation for the visit.
Why Is My Baby So Gassy
If your baby is gassy, youll notice that he passes a lot of gas and seems to feel better afterward. Gas troubles often start right away or when babies are just a couple of weeks old.
Fortunately, most infants outgrow them by the time theyre 4 to 6 months old, though for some, baby gas can last longer.
Infants are usually gassy because they have immature digestive systems and swallow air during feedings. Some babies may have sensitivities that could be affected by a breastfeeding moms diet or a certain type of formula.
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Effective Positions To Relieve Gas
One of the ways to relieve infant gas is to try holding your baby in different positions. Burping babies helps remove some of the air that babies swallow when eating. Try to use different positions while burping that feel comfortable for both of you. Try one of these three positions to relieve gas:
- Sit upright and hold your infant against your chest. In this position, your babys chin will be on your shoulder while you support them with your hand. Gently pat your baby on the back.
- Hold your infant sitting up across your knee or in your lap. In this position, you will be gently supporting your babys head and chest by holding their chin. With the heel of your hand on your babys chest, be careful to hold your babys chin and not their throat. With your other hand, pat your babys back gently.
- Lay your baby face down on your lap. In this position, support your babys head and ensure that its higher than their chest. Pat their back gently.
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How To Treat Gas In Babies
There is no specific treatment for gas in babies. Avoid over-the-counter medications as they are not meant for babies. The American Academy of Pediatrics states that you can consider giving your baby simethicone gas drops to relieve gas. Simethicone is a compound that congregates the gas produced within the gastrointestinal tract and makes it easy for the baby to pass.
Follow the dosage instructions on the bottle to prevent overdosing. Research states that the medication provides mediocre relief from gas in infants. Some babies may not respond to the medicine at all .
Therefore, it is best to consult the pediatrician before giving the medication. Home care and remedies are perhaps the better alternatives when it comes to dealing with a gassy tummy among infants.
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Is My Baby Gassy Or Colic
During the first 4 months of life, your baby might have colic. Gas doesnt cause colic, but if your baby is colicky, they may swallow more air, which gives them more gas.
Now lets go through the causes, symptoms, and treatments of baby gas and colic, to understand better the differences and find the best way to help your baby.
What Causes Baby Gas
There are several possible causes for infant gas. Some believe that breastfed babies can get the effects of gaseous foods from their mothers breast milk. Others feel that acidic foods and excess dairy products in their diet also seem to worsen their babys fussiness.
But what mom eats isnt the only possibility.
If your babys bottle-fed, they could be having a reaction to their formula. Food intolerance often shows up as gas and bloating. If this is the cause of gas, youre also likely to see other digestive problems like diarrhea.
One of the more common causes is swallowing too much air while eating whether breastfed or bottle-fed it can cause gas.
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When To Visit A Doctor
Gassiness is seldom a medical emergency. However, it is good to let the doctor take a look if:
- Baby has chronic colic, which is crying for at least three hours per day for three days a week .
- The baby has diarrhea and severe constipation, so much that the baby does not pass stool for a week.
- The baby is unable to eat properly and suffers from a loss of appetite.
- The gassiness interferes with the babys sleep causing extreme fatigue in the infant.
- The baby gets fussy often and loses interest in play and other activities.
- The baby has a fever.
The above symptoms could indicate some other serious conditions such as a food allergy, gastroesophageal reflux, and gastrointestinal infections. Therefore, when gassiness is chronic, it is vital to get the baby checked by a doctor.
Remedies Of Gas Pain In Babies
Gas pain in babies is common, and it can cause them to cry, be fussy, or have trouble sleeping. There are a few different remedies that can help to relieve gas in babies. Some of these remedies include:
- Move their legs in a circle
- Elevate the babys head above their stomach
- Take them for a walk
- Massage their belly
- Burp them
- Distract them
- Give gas drops
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How To Treat Baby Gas
Immediately after feeding, keep your baby upright. This will make it easier for them to burp.
If theyre already feeling discomfort, try laying your baby on their back and moving their legs in a bicycle motion.
Alternately, give your baby time on their tummy. Lying stomach-down should help them move the gas out.
You could also try these techniques to comfort them and help move the gas from their little bodies:
Signs Your Baby Has Gas And How To Treat It
Babies are naturally gassy, but you can take preventive measures to keep your little one comfortable. Here, experts share what to do for a gassy baby.
New parents are often surprised at the big noises that come out of a small baby. Newborns can be quite the audible orchestra, and gas is often part of the repertoire. “Gas is a normal part of the digestive process, but it’s also involved in most intestinal complaints,” says Jeremiah Levine, M.D., director of pediatric gastroenterology at NYU Langone Health. “Too much gas is usually a symptom that something else is going on.” Here’s how to recognize the signs of a gassy baby and help them pass it.
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