Colic Baby

Does your baby cry excessively even after feed, nappy change and a good nap? You may check in this guide if symptoms of colic match with your childs behavior. If yes, colic shouldnt worry you as it settles down on its own. Read further about symptoms of a colic baby, the causes and remedies.

Last Updated: Oct 22, 2020 11:29 GMT

Colic Baby
Colic Baby
What are the symptoms of a colic baby?

Newborns can cry for a number of reasons, at any time of the day and night, and for any period of time. Yes, babies are unpredictable. However, if you want to find whether your baby’s cry is due to colic or not, here are a few general guidelines:

  • Your baby is not older than five months. Most colic babies begin to show symptoms by two or three weeks after birth. 
  • Except for the bouts of crying, colic babies show normal signs of growth like feeding well and gaining weight. 
  • The thumb rule to diagnose a colic baby is this: Your baby cries for more than three hours a day, for more than three days a week, for at least three weeks. It might seem your baby has been crying most of the time when he or she is awake. Yes, that’s what colic babies do!
  • A colic baby usually cries at a higher intensity than how we would expect a normal baby would do. 
  • It might take a long time for a colic crying episode to subside which in turn might take several attempts to soothe the baby. 
  • Your baby may show signs of tummy uneasiness like arching his back, pulling up his legs or clenching his fingers.
What causes colic in babies?

What exactly causes colic in babies still remains unknown. It is a popular belief that gassy tummy causes colic though there is no strong research-based evidence to support it. Some studies have shown that the intestinal bacteria in colic babies are different from that of non-colic babies. Some have shown that colic babies are extremely sensitive to external stimuli that they begin to cry intensely. Still others believe that components in breast milk or formula might be allergic to the baby. It must be noted that there are no significant differences between breastfed and formula-fed babies and between girls and boys in experiencing colic. 

Further Reading: Thrush In Babies: Symptoms and its Treatment

How to treat colic?

Strangely, there is no one sure method to treat a colic baby. As a matter of fact, there is no real treatment. It can be helpful to talk with your doctor about your baby’s crying behavior. Your doctor might do a physical examination to rule out other possible causes for your baby crying. However, most often, colic doesn’t need medical intervention. 

Most colic babies settle down by the time they reach their third or fourth months. Until then, you can try the following ways to calm down your crying baby, and you may as well invent something new and safe that works for your baby.

  • Walk holding your baby in your arms or resting him on your shoulders.
  • Colic babies have shown to respond to rocking movements. Rock him gently in a cradle or swing.
  • The rocking motion can alleviate his discomfort.‘White noise’ is a strange discovery to soothe colic babies though it has worked well for several parents. The noise of a vacuum cleaner or a blow dryer diverts crying babies and in some cases may put them to sleep.
  • Make sure not to place this equipment too close to the baby though.
  • Take the baby on a car ride or stroller.
  • Outdoors and rides can do the magic of calming down your baby.

Don’t take the following symptoms lightly. Report to your doctor immediately if you find the following changes in your baby:

  • Baby throws out or vomits feeds continuously
  • Baby does not take feeds well or loses weight
  • Baby has loose stools
  • Baby cries uncontrollably for longer hours than usual.

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