Colic survival tips
All babies will spend some of each day crying – telling you they are hungry, tired, they need a change or they are uncomfortable. However, when a baby seems to be in discomfort or crying for more than three hours each day on an almost daily basis for more than a week or two, then they might be described as suffering from colic.
No-one wants to see their baby unhappy, and a cry which is not consoled by a little walk around and a cuddle is not only upsetting, it can be frustrating for a tired new parent. It is important to remember that this phase, no matter how hard for you to get through, should only last at most only a couple of months and, importantly, you are not the first or the last parent to go through this.
Coping with colic
- Bouts of colic tend to come on in the early evening. (Some unfortunately happen through the whole day, but the early evening does tend to be quite common.) If this is the case, try to get meals and other chores done earlier each day so you have cleared this tiring time of the day just to get through the bout of colic.
- Colic is not predictable – it can happen to breast- and bottle-fed babies, it can happen to a second child when your first was colic-free. So do not feel you have done anything wrong.
- It is believed that colic will pass without any medical intervention but many parents believe that opting for cranial osteopathy works very well for relieving colic. This is a non-invasive alternative therapy.
- Try to reduce windiness as this can exacerbate discomfort. Encourage your baby to drink smoothly and keep their bottle (or your breast) constantly in the mouth during a feed so your child does not have to gulp too much. Also if you are feeding from a bottle make sure the teat is full of milk until the end of the feed so no air pockets can cause extra windiness. But also try to encourage your baby to have a relaxed, slower feed.
- Chill out time. Try some gentle baby massage, in quiet surroundings and with soothing singing to ease your baby, or take your child for a walk at the same time every day – the fresh air will do you both some good.
If your baby’s cries are high pitched, your baby gets very hot, loses interest in feeds or is not putting on enough weight, talk to your GP or health visitor.
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