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Home  >  Baby Colic Articles  colic fact sheet


( this article used by courtesy of the Central District Health Department)

baby colic fact sheet for new parents

Unexplained and severe crying spells that are repeated daily, often in the early evening hours. May draw knees up to chest or rigidly stiffen legs, clench fists, turn red, expel gas, then shriek in pain. Begins at age 2 - 3 weeks to 3 - 6 months.
Does not affect baby's growth and development. Self limiting.
TREATMENT:
  • rule out physical problems
  • review proper feeding techniques
    • feed slowly in upright position
    • attempt to burp several times during feeding
    • calm quiet room
    • check nipple size - may be swallowing air

SUGGESTED COLIC REMEDIES:

  • if breastfeeding, decrease milk, milk products, caffeine, chocolate, gas producing foods, eggs
  • if bottle feeding, try soybean formula
  • use front carrier for holding baby
  • take baby for car rides or place on running dishwasher, washing machine, dryer or run vacuum cleaner
  • walk with baby face down, baby's body across arm with hand under abdomen to apply gentle pressure
  • try wind up swing
  • take baby outside
  • lay baby face down on hot water bottle covered with soft textured cloth
  • swaddle infant tightly with soft stretchy blanket
  • play a record of mother's heartbeat heard in the womb
  • rub baby's tummy - experiment with massage techniques
  • discuss with doctor use of herbal teas - fennel, chamomile, anise, comfrey
  • discuss with doctor if infant straining with bowel movement
  • alternate cycle - walk with infants 20 - 30 minutes, leave alone safely in a crib for 20 -3 0 minutes
  • use music, motion, body contact

PARENT SUPPORT:

  • don't take crying personally
  • breathe deeply - repeat "We are all learning new things."
  • take a break from baby at least one hour daily
  • join a parent support group
  • accept help

Focus on easing discomfort.

Reference:
  • Johnson & Johnson, Your Baby and Colic, Ft. Washington, PA, June 1990
  • Kempe, C. Henry, Silver, Henry K., O'Brien, D., Pediatric Diagnosis and Treatment, Lange Medical Pub., Los Altos, CA, 1980, p. 672
  • Sears, William MD, Creative Parenting, Dodd, Mead & Co., New York 1982, pp 141-142
  • Waldman, William MD and Sargard, Deborah, "Helping Parents to Cope with Colic", Pediatric Basics #33

    This article is  copyrighted, and used with permission of the Central District Health Department in Boise, Idaho. All information on Slumber Sounds is for educational purposes only, and is not  medical  or healthcare advice, nor a substitute for medical and professional services from a qualified healthcare provider familiar with your personal situation. For medical advice, including diagnosis and treatment, consult your physician or other healthcare provider regarding any condition and before starting any treatment. We supply this information with the understanding that Slumber Sounds is not engaged in rendering medical services or other professional services or advice.

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