Crying & Colic Symptoms & Solutions

Contributed by : Samiksha Choithani , Ravina Sewani    
Crying & Colic Symptoms & Solutions

Crying and colic are not the same thing and so it is important to identify the difference and address it.

If your baby cries for excessively for too long and cries frequently despite your best attempts to soothe or console, your child might be having Infantile colic (I.C). Infantile colic starts at about 3 weeks of age and self-resolve by 6 months. Do not feel guilty about not being able to soothe your child because more children than you would assume have infantile colic. Colic and crying are different.

All babies cry but not all are colicky. When babies cry it is to grab your attention to matters like hunger, wet diapers, tummy troubles, teething, or an underlying illness. And this is not colic. Ideally a colicky infant cries for more than 3 hours a day, for more than 3 days a week, and for over 3 weeks. Babies with colic are healthy, gain weight normally, and do not have digestive complaints or other known ailments. Other symptoms of colic are flushed red face when the babies cry, fussiness with arching back, drawing knees to the stomach, or clenching fists.

The exact reasons for colic are still a mystery. The digestive system of infants is immature and this can lead to colic. Your child’s doctor will diagnose colic based on the symptoms, intensity and duration of the crying episodes.

Managing my colicky baby:

  • Ensure that your baby is not hungry or cold. Make sure to change the diapers regularly.
  • Always hold your baby upright while feeding and burp your baby after feeding. This prevents swallowing of air.
  • Bathe your baby in warm water, while gently massaging your baby's stomach.
  • Identify the time your baby gets fussy determine if anything seems to trigger or relieve the crying baby. Talk about your diet with your doctor, the doctor may suggest to skip some gas-producing foods from your diet.
  • Try new positions with your baby, swaddle them tight or massage may help. Try to turn your baby on your lap, make them sleep on stomach, and gently massage on back.
  • You can also try some sounds, a car ride or take them out in a pram. Sometimes changing the surroundings and outdoors may do the magic.
  • Take turns with family members to handle a the baby when they fussy.
  • When the baby is crying cradle or rock your baby in your arms. The comfort of your arms might calm your baby!
  • Sometimes, your child’s doctor might prescribe colic drops for your baby’s relief. But mind well that colic drops should only be given to a child after a doctor’s prescription.

Seek immediate medical help if your baby develops other complications like breathing problems, turns pale, refuses to feed and vomits green fluid, or has traces of blood while passing motion.

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