When Should I Make An Appointment With The Doctor:
Make an appointment with your doctor if you are concerned about any aspect of your childs health or development, or if your baby:
- isnt behaving as usual ,
- isnt eating or growing normally,
- is vomiting or has diarrhea,
- could be hurt from a fall or injury, or
- cries excessively over a period of more than 3 months.
Seek care right away if your baby:
- has a fever and is less than 3 months old,
- has bloody stools.
How To Deal With A Colicky Baby
Yes, being a parent comes with priceless rewards. Sometimes it can be downright difficult, though. With all the constant feeding, frequent diaper changes, anxiety, and little to no sleep, youre probably or most definitely exhausted. However, if you have a colicky baby, this can easily increase the stress and anxiety youre already experiencing. Dont worry, though. Youre not alone. Keep in mind that youre not to blame. Although colic symptoms might worsen before they get better, they last for only a couple of months.
Doctors Dont Know The Precise Reason For Colic Its Unknown As To Whether Its Genetic Or Related To Pregnancy And Childbirth But It Is Not A Reflection Of Parenting Skills Even Though It May Feel Like It
Overstimulation: Newborns are born without fully developed senses and have the ability to drown out the environment around them.
When babies begin to fully develop their sense of sight, smell, and sound, which happens to correlate with the typical onset of colic, many children find this introduction to the environment overwhelming.
Excessive Gassiness: Austin-based pediatrician, Dr. Ari Brown, explains that all babies are gassy because they eat around the clock, producing endless gas. All babies need to pass this gas, but as Dr. Jennifer Shu, author of Food Fights: Winning The Nutritional Challenges of Parenthood Armed with Insight, Humor, and A Bottle of Ketchup explains that some babies have difficulty passing gas.
The telltale signs of this are excessive and pained fussing, squirming, and pulling their legs up. If babies are relieved after passing gas, this also suggests that gas may be the culprit.
Infant Acid Reflux: Infant GERD can trigger colic as a result of an underdeveloped lower esophageal sphincter, the muscle that keeps stomach acid from flowing back up into the throat and mouth.
This acid can irritate the esophagus and cause pain. Symptoms include frequent spitting up, poor eating, crying when lying flat on the back, and irritability during and after feedings. GERD generally subsides by age one when baby is eating more solid foods.
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Colic: What In The World Is It
Colic is one of the most terrifying words to a new parent. The Mayo Clinic defines it as:
Persistent and inconsolable crying for three hours at a time, for three days a week, for three weeks or more in an otherwise perfectly healthy baby.
Other facts about colic include:
- It starts a few weeks after birth.
- The episodes come at a predictable time: usually in the late afternoon or evening and may end in the passing of gas or a bowel movement.
- Crying is intense, high-pitched, and sounds distressed. It sounds more like screaming than crying.
- Their face gets flushed and looks pained like an angry red raisin as one colic survivor put it best.
- Is unrelated to any need. In other words, has no cause and comes out of nowhere.
- The babys legs curl, fists clench, and abdominal muscles tense up.
- The crying is unresponsive to all known soothing techniques.
In clinical practice, parents begin to contact me about colic symptoms when their infant is 2 to 3 weeks old. This phase can last a few months, ultimately self-resolving at around 3 months old. Parents describe their baby as difficult to console and are concerned about something very serious going on. Often, parents believe constipation is the problem because they notice the abdomen is firm and the baby seems to be pushing. The majority of the time, this is not the case and stools are soft or loose.
Dr. Leah Alexander, MD, FAAP
When To Call Your Doctor Immediately
A number of signs and symptoms may suggest that your baby is more seriously ill. It is recommended that you contact your doctor immediately if your baby:
- has a weak, high-pitched continuous cry
- seems floppy when you pick them up
- takes less than a half of their usual feeds
- passes less urine than usual
- vomits green fluid
- passes blood in their stools
- has a fever such as 38°C or above or 39°C or above
- has a bulging fontanelle
- has a fit
- turns blue, blotchy or very pale
- has a stiff neck
- has breathing problems, such as breathing quickly or grunting while breathing
- has a spotty, purple-red rash anywhere on their body
- has a seizure
None of the above symptoms is caused by colic. If you cant get hold of your doctor, call healthdirect on 1800 022 222 for advice .
The Therapeutic Goods Administration has issued a product recall for all batches of Infants’ Friend oral liquid
Information for consumers
If you have a bottle of Infants’ Friend oral liquid, do not use it. Return it to the place you purchased it from for a refund.
If you have any questions or concerns about this issue, talk to your health professional or contact Infants’ Friend Pty Ltd customer service on 1800 981 403.
For more information please see TGA’s alert on Infants’ Friend oral liquid.
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Check In With A Lactation Consultant
If youre a breastfeeding mom, this is so essential. There are so many anatomical issues that could be causing your baby grief! Unfortunately, most pediatricians arent trained to spot these conditions, so be sure you find an IBCLC-certified lactation consultant. Your baby could have a bad latch. She could be tongue-tied. He could be lip-tied. All of these issues could cause some major colic symptoms!
You also want to be sure baby is getting enough hindmilk, which is higher in fat, calms the stomach, helps with digestion, and promotes satiety. If your babys poop is greenish, frothy or mucuosy, this is usually a sign that hes getting too much foremilk, which can cause digestive distress. This often happens when a breastfeeding mom has an overactive letdown or is having oversupply issues, which is very common in the first few months after giving birth.
Eight Ways To Deal With Colic
So youve had your baby, youve survived the first few weeks in the newborn bubble and now? Your babys just wont stop crying. Welcome to the world of colic. Colics one of those things you dont really hear much about before becoming a parent. In fact, one in three new mums admit to not knowing about infant colic prior to their child being diagnosed. So, it can come as a bit of a shock if your baby suddenly starts to suffer from it.
One in five babies will have infant colic. Does your baby cry intensely for hours on end? Do they become red and flushed from crying? Do they clench their fists, draw their knees up or arch their back? And is it usually during witching hour that period from late-afternoon through to the evening? Thats colic.
When youre in the middle of dealing with a colicky baby it can feel incredibly overwhelming. I remember standing in my lounge, crying whilst trying to bounce him to sleep before my husband came home. It was always around 4.30pm and Id be tired, alone and feel like a complete wreck by the time he eventually walked through the door at 5.45pm. It made me scared to go out in the afternoons, it made me doubt my parenting abilities and it added a whole new level of stress to mine and Daves relationship.
Infacol, the UKs number one colic relief remedy, run their Colic Awareness Campaign which strives to educate and support parents to ensure they can experience the joys of parenthood to the full.
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What Are The Signs And Symptoms Of Colic
If you suspect you have a colicky baby, look out for the following possible signs and symptoms:
Give her a warm bath.
Play soft music, sing, or talk to her.
Wrap her securely in a large, thin blanket.
Unfortunately, there is no cure for colic. Remember that sometimes no matter what you do your baby will cry. So donât beat yourself up about it. Try any number of these different approaches. If one method doesnât work within a week, go with another treatment on the list.
You may find that by the time youâve tried most of these steps, your baby will have outgrown this colicky phase.
What Causes Colic In Babies
The medical community doesnt really know inconclusively what causes baby colic.
- Some chock it up to a rite of passage that usually begins at a few weeks old to 3-4 months, sometimes longer.
- Others blame it on an immature digestive tract, allergies, a developing brain/neurological system, or high-strung parents.
- Some theorize that colic children are introverts and are easily overstimulated.
Of course, its always recommended to check in with your pediatrician to rule out any potential issues and provide an accurate diagnosis.
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Key Points About Colic
- Colic is when a healthy baby cries for a very long time, for no obvious reason.
- It affects some babies during the first 3 to 4 months of life.
- Colic usually begins suddenly, with loud and mostly nonstop crying.
- Colicky babies can be very difficult to calm down.
- Changing how your baby is fed, and using different calming methods, can help to soothe a colicky baby.
- Colic goes away on its own, sometimes by age 3 months. In most cases it is gone by age 6 months.
Does Your Baby Have Colic
All babies have periods of crying and fussing. Its considered colic when the crying goes on for more than three hours a day for more than three days a week. The crying is often accompanied by burping and other signs of gas, which may be because the baby is swallowing air when they cry.
When parents come to her about a crying baby who isnt easily consoled, Dr. Bonita asks questions and examines the baby to rule out health problems. If the baby is eating well and growing, has no vomiting or diarrhea, and follows a pattern of extended crying in the evening it is probably colic.
Colic typically starts when babies are about 3 weeks old, with extended periods of crying in the evening, between 6 p.m. and midnight. The long crying spells usually end when the baby is about 3 months old, though some babies continue to have crying spells until they are 6 months old.
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Give Yourself A Break
Dealing with a child thats crying for an extended period each day can have a huge effect on your mental well-being. Not only do you need support but sometimes, you need a break. Make the most of people offering to help wherever possible, even if its just five minutes to get some fresh air and walk around the block. If youre having a particularly hard day, put your baby down somewhere safe and step out of the room for a moment to calm yourself.
Signs And Symptoms Of Colic
Signs and symptoms that your baby has colic include:
- periods of crying where they are harder to console than usual – over 3 hours a day for more than 3 days a week and over a period of 3 weeks or more
- drawing their legs up, arching their back or clenching their fists
- going red in the face
- seeming to settle and then having another spell of crying
Crying is more common in the evening time. Sometimes a baby with colic can cry for many hours during the day or night.
If your baby has colic, they may appear to be in distress. But babies with colic are fine between periods of crying. Your baby should be feeding well and gaining weight even if they have colic.
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I Hope These Will Help You Too
- If you are breastfeeding, take care of your diet, take more liquids, and avoid gassy food.
- Make sure baby is latching properly.
- While feeding your baby, always keep your babys head high approximately at 45 degrees angle so that milk can flow easily.
- Feed the baby in sitting position, dont lie down and feed.
- Burp the baby after every feed. It may take 10-15 minutes sometimes.
- Apply hing paste on your babys tummy. Mix a pinch of hing with warm water and apply.
- Massage your babys tummy in a circular motion gently.
- Do some cycling exercise with your babys legs.
- Bring your babys legs to his/her tummy, it will easily pass the gas.
- Let the baby lie down on his/her tummy for a few minutes and gently massage on his/her back.
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Tips For Coping With Colic
Until youve experienced a colicky baby, its difficult to imagine the intensity. The crying can become frustrating to the point of total breakdown for parents whose natural instinct is to comfort and calm. But. nothing. seems. to. help.
About ¼ of babies will experience colic, defined as at least 3 hours of crying daily at least 3 days a week. Three hours of crying may not seem out of the ordinary for a baby, but parents of colicky babies can tell youevery minute of shrieking feels like an eternity.
According to pediatrician Dr. Alan Greene, “arents are often conditioned to believe that if their child is crying, something is wrong, something that they should be able to fix. Fortunately, you can take solace in the fact that your child is probably otherwise healthy. Unfortunately for both baby and parents, doctors don’t know what causes colic, what the disorder is, or how to cure it. They don’t even know if colicky babies are in pain. But they do know that colic does not indicate the presence of a serious medical problem, and a certain amount of crying is normal and healthy. Still, to set your mind at ease, it may be helpful to take your child to the pediatrician to ensure all that wailing and weeping is not a sign of a medical problem. It can also be reassuring to keep in mind that most cases of colic go away by the time the child has reached three months of age.”
Here are 10 tips for coping with colic:
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