If you talk to other parents, you will hear dozens of ideas on preventing a colicky baby from crying. Your doctor may suggest some of the same techniques. Most behavioural interventions have not been proven to work but parents can try them anyway. They are generally not harmful and they do give the parent a feeling of "doing something." Trying to calm your child has been shown to lessen the total time spent crying, even if it doesn't seem like it.
The following methods have been used for centuries to calm babies with colic:
- Swaddle the baby in a soft blanket.
- Hold the baby more often during the day, even when the baby isn't crying.
- Rock the baby gently.
- Burp the baby more often.
- Make sure the baby is sitting up when feeding. This reduces the amount of air swallowed.
- Use the "colic carry" to hold your baby. Place the baby face down along your arm, with the chin in the palm of your hand and the legs straddling your inner elbow. Walk around the house a bit.
- Take the baby out for a walk or a drive.
- Try singing a lullaby to the baby.
- If it all becomes overwhelming, take a break and leave the house. Let someone you can trust babysit for a few hours. If you're stressed or angry, the baby can sense it.
- If you are breast-feeding, avoid stimulants such as caffeine and chocolate. You may also find that avoiding dairy products or nuts may help.
- A pacifier may help, but make sure it's not held by a string around the neck.
- Soothing music often helps both you and the baby relax.
- If the baby is on formula, try changing to a hypoallergenic formula. Soy-based formulas are less likely to be helpful, as many babies who have an intolerance to cow milk protein will also have an intolerance to soy milk.
- Make sure the hole in the bottle nipple is not too large or too small. It should release about one drop per second when held upside down. If it's too small, it can cause the baby to swallow air.
Many people find that rhythmic noise, white noise, and vibration help. For example, some mothers carry their baby in a chest pouch while vacuuming. Cars provide vibration and a white-noise background, which explains why many colicky babies calm down during car rides. Washing machines, dishwashers, air conditioners, or the noise from a fan all provide a white-noise calming effect on some babies.
If none of these simple solutions seem to help much, ask your doctor about devices that attach to the crib that both gently vibrate it and provide a white-noise background. These devices are expensive, but for frazzled parents with a very colicky baby, they can be worth the price.
No medication has ever been proven to help colic (including those that claim to reduce "gas"). Some research suggests that probiotics (such as lactobacillus) may be helpful for babies with colic, but more research is needed. Never give your baby medications without talking to your doctor or pharmacist first. Breast-feeding mothers can also check with their pharmacist to find out if any of the medications they are taking may be part of the problem.
All material copyright MediResource Inc. 1996 – 2017. Terms and conditions of use. The contents herein are for informational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Source: www.medbroadcast.com/condition/getcondition/Colic