Tips For Calming Colicky Babies

Having a baby with colic isn’t easy. Here are some tips to keep you and your little one calm during this time.

Having a baby with colic isn’t easy. Here are some tips to keep you and your little one calm during this time.

What is Colic?

If your healthy baby cries for an extended period of time (3 hours per day, 3 days per week, for at least 3 weeks), your baby is considered to have colic. Colic is typically not caused by any specific illness and usually goes away on its own. However, your baby’s intense crying can put significant stress on you and your family, so it’s no surprise that moms look for tips to minimize colic.

What Should I Do if I Suspect Colic?

Take your little one to the doctor to ensure there are no underlying medical conditions. Call a doctor immediately if your little one is vomiting, running a fever, or having bloody stools, as these are not symptoms of colic. Once you’ve ensured that your baby is just colicky, you can work on ways to manage it.

How Can I Help Colic?

There is no perfect treatment for colic, but there are many tips that may help to improve the symptoms. If your baby has colic, try these tips:

  • Research has shown that the best way to reduce colic is to cuddle with your little one. Who doesn’t love snuggling? In fact, it can reduce crying by 43-50%. Also, try to increase the amount of time your little one spends at breast to get more skin-to-skin contact for baby.

  • Some babies benefit from soothing rhythms, similar to what your baby experienced in the womb. Try spending time in a rocking chair or putting your little one in a vibrating swing or seat. Also, the vibrations of a car ride can be soothing. Even placing your baby near a running dryer or white noise machine may help.

  • Play soothing music for your little one. The calm melodies could be comforting.

  • Some babies need decreased stimulation so try swaddling him or her in a quiet, dark room.

  • Some colic can be caused by digestive problems, so be sure to burp your baby frequently and try gently rubbing your baby’s back.

  • Occasionally, a food intolerance can be to blame for both formula and breastfeed babies, whether it’s lactose sensitivity or sensitivity to something in a mom’s diet. Talk to your doctor if you notice more intense crying around feedings.

  • Try offering your little one a pacifier. Using a pacifier may help calm your baby, as suckling can be soothing and help him or her regulate their emotions. Pacifiers can also be helpful in calming your little one during periods of distress, such as episodes of colic, because it satisifies your baby's natural suckling desire - and suckling helps babies soothe themselves.

How Do I Handle the Stress of Colic?

Colic can be extremely stressful to family members and these emotions are totally normal. Don’t feel ashamed because you’re frustrated. Be sure to take care of yourself and rest assured that your little one will grow out of this phase. When you’re frustrated, step away and take some time to compose yourself. Remember that you have friends and family there to support you, so don’t be afraid to ask for help.


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