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Understanding Colic: Treatment

Colic should go away by the time your baby is 4 months old. Until then, try these tips. They may give both of you some relief.

Feeding Tips

Is it the breastmilk or formula? Some parents worry that what they feed their baby or what they eat if they are breastfeeding can upset him. Generally it’s not a cause of colic, but it can cause irritation. If you think it might be the cause of your baby's crying, talk to his pediatrician.

Help him swallow less air. Try a special bottle designed to reduce gas or a nipple with a smaller hole. Sit him up while he eats so he swallows less air. Remember to burp him during and after feedings.

Soothe Your Baby With Sound and Motion

Walk or rock. Motion helps calm babies. Walk around with your baby in a baby carrier (the kind you wear over your chest). The combined warmth and rhythm may lull her to sleep.

Hold and rock him or put him in a swing or stroller. The gentle movement may stop his tears.

If all else fails, secure him in his car seat and go for a ride. Just make sure you’re not so tired it’s unsafe to drive.

Use sound to calm your baby. Many babies respond well to the gentle hum of a machine, such as a:

  • Clothes dryer (But don’t be tempted to put your baby on top of a dryer -- not even in a carrier or car seat -- because he could fall.
  • Fan
  • Vacuum
  • White-noise machine

You could also try classical music or a "heartbeat soundtrack" next to the crib.

 

Calm Your Baby’s Senses

Bright lights and sounds can overwhelm a colicky baby. Your baby may calm down if you:

  • Lay him on his back in a dark, quiet room.
  • Swaddle him snugly in a blanket.
  • Lay him across your lap and gently rub his back.
  • Try infant massage.
  • Put a warm water bottle on your baby's belly.
  • Have him suck on a pacifier.
  • Soak him in a warm bath.

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