Colic – A Basic Overview
Colic refers to a condition in which babies cry inconsolably, draw up their legs, and clench their fists for prolonged periods of time. The cause is unknown. The colicky infant appears to be in great pain. The colic may happen at the same time each day, or might happen intermittently or even during most hours that the baby is awake.
Colic – Potential Causes
As many as 1 in 5 newborn babies has colic. Colic might be caused by the reaction of an immature nervous system to the stimulating environment outside the womb or might be caused by gastrointestinal pain due to poor digestion. Babies who are breast fed are less likely to have colic than babies who are fed formula.
If your baby has colic, be sure the baby’s doctor has administered a thorough checkup to rule out possibly serious medical conditions and is aware of the colic symptoms. Babies generally outgrow colic after three months of age.
Colic Natural Remedies
- Soothing. Colic natural remedies include warm baths, gentle massage, pacifiers, rocking the baby, singing, playing music, soothing lighting, and placing the baby in a very quiet environment for a brief time.
- Diet changes. Bottle-feeding mothers might try to switch to another brand of formula, with the guidance of the baby’s doctor. Breastfeeding mothers might try to remove possible irritants such as caffeine from their own diets, because it might be turning up in the breast milk. Keeping the baby on a regular eating and sleeping schedule may help.
- Cuddling. British research on studies of more than 1,000 colicky babies concluded that simply cuddling the baby while it cries is at least as effective as herbal remedies, vibrating cribs, and other strategies.
Some scientists feel that colic is probably caused by multiple factors. Babies exposed to cigarette smoke, both in the womb (when the mother smokes) and after birth, are more likely to have colic. Babies with allergies and highly anxious mothers also appear to be more likely to have colic.
Colic and Probiotics
Some colicky babies have an overgrowth of E. coli bacteria in their intestines, which can be counteracted with probiotics (“healthy bacteria”). In a 2007 study, breast fed babies between the ages of 2 weeks and 16 weeks who were given a probiotic supplement (Lactobacillus reuteri) cried less than those given a placebo. Stool samples from the babies revealed that those who received the probiotic had fewer E. coli in their intestines. Always consult your baby’s doctor before administering any supplements or medications.
The information on this site it intended for general inquiry and informational purposes only and should not be considered a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. If you think you, or those under your care, are ill or in need of health care, please seek immediate medical attention. Always consult a doctor or other competent licensed clinical for specific advice about medical treatments for yourself or those under your care. Any use of, or reliance in any way upon, the information contained in the AlternativZ site and/or accessed through this site is solely at your own risk.
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