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Colic - Topic Overview

How is colic diagnosed?

If you are worried about your baby's crying, see your doctor or talk about it at your baby's next routine checkup. To make sure that crying is colic, your doctor may do a physical exam and ask you about your baby's past health, what comforting techniques you have tried, and whether you have noticed any other symptoms. You may also be asked about how the crying affects you and to show how you feed and burp your baby. Your doctor may suggest that you keep track of when and how often your baby cries.

If your baby has any symptoms that worry you, such as vomiting or a fever, your doctor may do lab tests or X-rays to find out what is causing them.

What can you do about colic?

It may help to see if there is a pattern to your baby's crying. Many babies cry most in the late afternoon and evening hours. If you notice that your baby cries at certain times of day, you can try holding your baby more before those times. But during expected fussy times, limit visitors, keep noise and lights low, and touch your baby only if needed.

After crying starts, try rocking your baby in a quiet room, or take him or her out for a walk in a front-pack carrier or stroller. Some babies are soothed by riding in a car or listening to a droning sound, like a fan or a clothes dryer.

Do what you can to comfort your baby, but accept that sometimes nothing works. If you feel stressed or worn out, ask a friend or family member to give you a break. Take good care of yourself, and remember that colic will go away soon.

Frequently Asked Questions

Learning about colic:

Normal behavior:

Seeing a doctor:

Helping your baby:

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: February 25, 2013
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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