Colic: What You Can Do to Make It Better
You may have heard the term colic applied to any baby who cries a great deal. Not all crying babies have colic, but all colicky babies cry-and they cry hard.
Since colic occurs in newborns, parents often feel they are doing something wrong to create the situation. Their vulnerability and lack of experience put them in the position of questioning their own ability to take care of their baby.
Remember that nothing you do will eliminate colic completely until your baby’s system is mature and able to settle on its own. That said, experienced parents and professionals can offer ways to help your baby through.
Things to try for your colicky baby:
- Hold your baby in a more upright position for feeding and directly afterward.
- Experiment with how often and when you burp your baby.
- Offer meals in a quiet setting.
- If baby likes a pacifier, offer him one.
- Give your baby a warm bath.
- Place a warm towel or wrapped water bottle on baby’s tummy (taking caution that the temperature is warm but not hot).
- Hold your baby with her legs curled up toward her belly.
- Massage your baby’s tummy, or give him a full massage.
- Walk with baby in a quiet, dark room while you hum or sing.
- Try keeping your baby away from highly stimulating situations during the day when possible to prevent sensory overload, and understand that a particularly busy day may mean a fussier evening.
When should I call the doctor about colic?
Anytime you are concerned about your baby, call your doctor. That goes for anything concerning your precious little one.
In the case of colic, be sure to make that call if you notice any of the following:
- Your baby’s crying is accompanied by vomiting.
- Your baby is not gaining weight.
- The colicky behavior lasts longer than four months.
- Your baby seems to be in pain.
- Your baby has a fever.
- The crying spree isn’t limited to one bout in the evening.
- Your baby does not have regular bowel movements or wet diapers.