Dealing with a colicky infant
Colic is not some unusual disease that you should worry about. In fact, it is actually quite common especially to babies who are barely a year old. Still, the nonstop screaming and fidgeting can worry a lot of parents, especially if this is the first time that they have encountered such a problem. After all nonstop crying can be the result of many things not just a colic.
This is the reason why it is important for parents to know just what colic is and to recognize its signs and symptoms.
There is actually no known cause of colic. Despite being quite common, medical experts still have no idea what to make of this problem. It usually starts during the first few weeks, particularly during the third week. It peaks at two months of age and then subsides at the third to fourth month. By the fourth month, there will usually be no more episodes of colic.
Colic is purportedly a painful gaseous feeling brought on my stomachache. Children, who are unused to the problem and cannot communicate the pain, will cry for about an hour up to as much as five hours. They will scream at the top of their lungs. This can be really surprising for parents who are not used to seeing their normally quiet and angelic babies in this kind of mood.
Colic often occurs in babies who are big and active, especially those who are great eaters and those who grow really well. These babies will usually have colic episodes at specific time of day, often after each meal.
Since there is no known cause of colic, there is also no cure. There is not much that parents can do but make the experience as comfortable as possible for the infant and of course to lessen the pain and make sure that it will not get worse.
Below are some tips that will help you lessen the effects of colic and make sure that you are helping your child and not exacerbating the situation.
First advice that parents should heed is to not overfeed the child. Sometimes, when babies cry, parents’ first instincts is to feed them, thinking that they are hungry. Before feeding them, make sure that they are hungry and not having a colic.
Another thing that parents should watch out for is the foods that they take in. This is especially true with moms who are breastfeeding. Some babies are allergic to certain kinds of food and although you are not feeding those foods directly to him, they will still get the allergens through the milk that you give them.
Foods that are usually avoided are caffeine, cabbage, onions, beans, and other foods that produce gas. Juices may also result to colic so make sure that your juices are diluted with water or better yet, just make them drink pure water when not drinking milk.
Intense emotions may also contribute in starting a colic episode. Parents are then advised to avoid letting their babies see their anxiety, their fear or their tension so as to avoid transferring the emotions to the babies.
Walking the infant can vastly help in alleviating colic. Make sure that his legs are drawn up so that pressure is taken from his belly.
Parents can also try letting their babies listen to some soothing music and to rock them gently, which can help relax them.