Know What Colic Is and How to Comfort Your Baby

Edited by Debbie, Charmed, Ephraim, Olivia and 2 others

We all know that babies need lots of love and attention. Their crying lets you know they need to be fed, they are sleepy or they need a diaper change.

What if you try all of those things and the crying just goes on and on and seems more intense than usual? You feel you have done everything you can to make your baby comfortable and your child has been screaming nonstop for hours. It's possible that your baby may be experiencing colic.

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Not all fussing of babies is due to colic. Babies do fuss and cry non-stop for no apparent reason. Colicky babies fuss usually two to three weeks after they've been born and continue until they are two months old. There is no exact known cause of colic. However, if one or both parents were known to be colicky, there is an increased tendency that their kids will be. Though colic has no known exact cause, there are a number of factors that may contribute and aggravate colic[1]?

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  • Tension at home.
    Infants have yet to develop biological system. Despite this, they can feel a mother's tension, anger or fear. As such, when a mother holds her baby, she may communicate her feelings with the baby.
  • Excessive Feeding.
    Excessive feeding.jpg
    In an attempt to stop crying, you may feed the child more often than usual. This may cause him indigestion, which further contributes to the colic pain.
  • Food the mother eats.
    Dairy products.jpg
    It is a known fact that some the food nutrients the mother takes in passes through breast milk. Though there is no evidence, a mother should try to avoid gas forming foods like dairy products, nuts and vegetables like broccoli and cabbage. Coffee and chocolate do much the same to the stomach as they are stimulants.
  • Milk Formula.
    Milk formula.jpg
    An infant's intestinal tract may not be comfortable with the present artificial milk formula being fed to him. It is often suggested that an infant with colic may benefit from trying another milk formula.

How do you identify colic?

It is important for parents to note that colic has no known cause. It is advisable to seek the advice of the pediatrician should you see the following signs occur in your baby:

  • Baby continuously cries and there is no amount of holding or cuddling can stop his fussing.
  • The baby's face gets red.
  • If the infant's is lying on his back, he usually draws his knees up near to his stomach.
  • The baby's stomach seemed to be bloated.

What can you do to relieve your baby's colic?

Here are some ways you can do to reduce the infant's gas in the stomach.

  • Hold , cuddle and rock the baby while singing a soothing lullaby. This usually quiets the baby down. Some mothers try distracting the child with a toy to stop the baby from crying. The more the baby cries, the more he ingests airs into his stomach. If he doesn't like lying in your arms, you can try holding him in an upright position. This way the baby's diaphragm is relieved from the bloated stomach, helping him to breathe easier. If your baby is more than three months old, you can use a baby swing to gently rock him and soothe him.
    Holding the Baby.jpg
  • If the infant's usual toys do not offer much help, try distracting him with the sound of the vacuum cleaner or the washing machine. These sounds are called white sounds. White noise usually drowns all other noise within your surroundings. It is not too loud and actually used as relaxation music.
    Vacuum cleaner.jpg
  • Try riding a car. Most infants are calmer when they are riding in the car. Perhaps this is because of the quickly passing scenery and the rocking motion of the car. You can try to imitate this by holding him and sitting on a rocking chair.
    Baby in car.jpg
  • Consult your pediatrician. The doctor may prescribe simethicone drops to relieve the infant of his colic.
    Baby consultation.jpg

Other Signs to Look for

If the baby continuously cries in a high pitched quality, it is better to take him to a doctor. In addition, if your baby passes blood in the stool consult the doctor immediately. Do not always associate colic with crying as it is the only way an infant can communicate with his or her parents and caregivers.

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Happy babe.jpg


  • Make time for yourself. If you feel anxious with the way the child continuously fuss and cry, have him hold by the baby sitter or your husband. Your feelings of anxiety and tension are indirectly communicated to the infant when you hold him.
  • When you feel frustrated that despite all your efforts, the baby does not stop crying, rest for a while. Then go back and try to cuddle him. If all else fails after some time, bring the infant to the pediatrician.


1. National Institute of Health; Neil K. Kaneshiro, MD, MHA; August 2011.

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  1. National Institute of Health; Neil K. Kaneshiro, MD, MHA; August 2011.

Article Info

Categories : Baby & Toddler

Recent edits by: Rebecca M., Olivia, Ephraim

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