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The Colic Baby
When a baby has colic, the family environment is stressful and many family members may become upset or on edge. This is most often seen in new parents. Some symptoms of colic may be that the baby cries loudly for three hours, the baby has bowel pains or the baby pulls their feet up under themselves and clenches their fists. New parents become alarmed and upset that their new baby may cry for hours, even though they have tried just about everything to comfort the the baby.
Causes of Colic
There is no known one cause of colic. Doctors have several theories of what causes infant colic. The most popular theory is that the child had ingested air along with either the mother's milk or bottled milk. Drinking too fast or in gulps causes air to enter the baby's stomach which leads to gastrointestinal pain, thus the baby becomes colic. Another theory some believe is that if the baby is breast fed and the mother is eating a lot of gas producing foods such as orange juice, vegetables, like onions and cabbage, apples, plums, spicy food and caffeinated products such as cola, chocolate and tea, the baby will receive the same result through breast milk. A third theory is that infants have an immature nervous system that is unable to cope with all the intense new stimulations of new life events. As the day progresses, the stress overcomes them and they cry for hours.
Solutions For a Colic Baby
Infant colic is very common in new born children. It is not the result of poor parenting skills. In fact, about 1/3 of all babies experience colic, so having a colic baby is not uncommon. In most cases infant colic will disappear in three months. But what can you do now? How can you reduce colic symptoms? There is no single treatment for a colic baby. Many parents have experienced success trying the following methods:
1. Hold your baby and rock it in your arms.
2. Put your baby in a swing and gently rock it back and fourth.
3. Take the baby for a car ride.
4. Carry the infant in a sling or take it for a carriage ride.
5. Try turning on a fan or vacuum, using them as white noise.
6. Try using a pacifier.
7. Give the baby a warm bath.
8. Try burping the baby.
9. Use Simethicone drops to reduce the baby's gas pains.
10. If you are the mother, and you are breast feeding, vary your diet to see if you are eating some food which produces gas. The baby would receive this food through your breast milk.
Summary of Infant Colic
Most of the time newborn colic is nothing to worry about. Make sure you go over the possible solutions for a colic baby which are listed above. Ask neighbors and friends. They have often already been through infant colic. Consult your doctor if your baby screams constantly or if the infant colic is accompanied by vomiting, diarrhea, constipation or absence of urine. These symptoms may indicate a more serious problem. If you are new parents, congratulations!
James M. Aust
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