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Colicky Babies May Be More 'Emotional' Later

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An earlier study, this time in Finland, found similar behavioral results in formerly colicky children, but clearly linked the behavioral difficulties to the reaction of the family when the baby suffered colic attacks.

"The families of previously colicky infants demonstrated more dissatisfaction with the arrangements of daily family responsibilities and with the amount of both leisure time and shared activities," the researchers, from the department of public health at the University of Turku, wrote after studying more than 1,200 3- year-olds.

Canivet says that while parental worries about excessive crying and infant discomfort are common, children with colic who are raised in a loving environment should develop normally. "Parents should relax and realize their child will suffer no serious long-term effects or complications later in life," Canivet says.

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, signs that a baby may have colic include:

  • Piercing and constant crying that can last for hours
  • A red face that may become pale or blue around the mouth if the attack is long or severe
  • A hard and distended belly, with legs drawn up and arms clenched tightly
  • Coldness in the hands and feet

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