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Treating Colic continued...

Here, in no particular order, is a list of some of the interventions for colic:

Feeding/Nutrition

  • Change from one cow's milk formula to another.
  • Change from a cow's milk formula to a soy formula.
  • Change from a regular formula to a "predigested," hypoallergenic formula.
  • If you're breastfeeding, avoid eating certain foods (such as caffeine, milk, certain vegetables) and taking herbal supplements.
  • Change the type of nipples on your baby's bottle, use bottles with plastic liners, and burp your baby frequently to curb air swallowing during feedings.
  • If bottle feeding, try to limit milk intake, and if that doesn't work, avoid limiting milk intake.
  • If your baby is spitting up, keep him upright after he feeds.

Calming the Senses

  • Swaddle your baby.
  • Try giving him more time in a front baby carrier (the kind you wear over your chest).
  • Take your baby for a ride in the car (but not when you are sleepy).
  • Use "white noise" (such as static on the radio or the vacuum cleaner), classical music, or a "heartbeat tape" next to the crib.
  • Try infant massage.
  • Put a warm water bottle on your baby's belly.
  • Have him or her suck on a pacifier.
  • Soak baby in a warm bath.
  • Try an infant swing.
  • Increase or decrease the amount of stimulation in the environment.
  • Watch out for over-stimulation or increased fatigue

Medications

  • Anti-reflux medicines, if reflux is suspected, may cut down on acid production or help to move the milk downstream.
  • Use anti-gas drops.
  • Try giving the baby "gripe water," but check the ingredients first. Most contain only herbs, but some from Europe may have alcohol or phenobarbital, which you should avoid.
  • Although there is limited scientific evidence to support the use of homeopathic drops for colic, some parents say they have helped their colicky baby. Look for the ones that contain probiotics.

NOTE: Check with your pediatrician before giving your baby any medication, including over-the-counter drugs, herbs, and supplements.

Sometimes, parents think a certain treatment has worked, but the colic might have just gotten better on its own. Other times, parents don't find an intervention that works well and just have to wait for the fussiness to improve on its own at 4 months or so.

Beware of "cures" that are guaranteed to work for all babies. There is no such thing.