My baby starts crying and fussing three or four nights a week, always in the wee hours of the morning.
Nothing I do settles him down. Ever have a night like that?
Your mom will tell you it’s probably colic. But having its name doesn’t tell you what it is or what to do about it.
Mom may not know. Colic’s cause is unknown, and it is more of a group of symptoms than any one thing. It usually starts around age two weeks, and goes away by 3 or 4 months.
Colic is the catch-all description given to a healthy, well-fed baby who cries more than three times a week, for more than 3 hours and continues this pattern for three weeks.
So what do you do about it? Here’re some home remedies that may help.
1. Motion Like The Ocean
Gas is thought to be one of the chief causes behind colic.
Some nice, relaxed rocking may help the baby move things through his system and pass gas. It certainly can’t hurt when trying to calm him down.
An infant swing works just about as well; just make sure your baby is old enough to be in the swing.
Babies are not hard to distract. This comes in handy when colic hits.
While noise can distract the baby from her discomfort, don’t go out and buy a noisy toy, just turn on the vacuum cleaner, the dishwasher or some other household appliance that we ignore on a daily basis.
3. Wrap It Up
Warmth applied to any body part increases the blood flow to that area. Increased blood flow often translates into better performance.
When a baby is crying with colic, place a warm towel across his abdomen and tuck it around his little belly. It can help cut down on the gas trapped in the stomach.
4. Stop And Smell The Roses
Soothe him or her by a nice warm bath. Add a drop or two of lavender to the water, and give the baby a little tummy massage. If you don’t like lavender, try chamomile or fennel massage oils.
5. From Your Mouth To Baby’s Breast Milk
If you’re breastfeeding, it could be that your diet is contributing to your baby’s gaseous issues.
Pay close attention to your diet, eliminating the potentially gas-causing foods one at a time for a week. If it improves, then you’ve probably figured out the food culprit. Try eliminating dairy, chocolate, caffeine, and any gas-forming foods, like broccoli, cabbage, onions, peppers and citrus fruits.
6. Wrap Me Up
Holding baby close to your chest where your heartbeat can be heard reminds your little bundle of joy about the comfort and safety of your womb. Swaddling a baby in a soft, slightly stretchy blanket is how they deal with fussing babies in hospital nurseries. Why wouldn’t it work for you at home? It is worth a try.
If none of these remedies work, have a talk with your pediatrician.