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Colic

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by Carson-DeWitt R
 

Treatment

A treatment plan will be chosen based on your baby's condition. Unfortunately, there is no specific treatment that cures colic. There are steps you can take to help reduce the discomfort your baby feels.

Support for Baby

Make changes during feeding time:
  • If breastfed, consider making changes to the mother's diet. This may include avoiding cow's milk, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, wheat, soy, and fish.
  • If bottle-fed, consider using a whey hydrolysate formula. Make sure to warm the formula before giving it to your baby.
  • Bottle feedings may need to be slowed down. Try using a nipple with a smaller hole.
  • Burp your baby well after feeding.
  • Feed your baby in a more upright position. This position will keep gas in your baby's stomach. Gas in the stomach is more easily burped up.
Talk to the doctor about alternative treatments. Certain supplements that may be helpful include:
Note: To keep your baby safe, check with the doctor before using any herbs or supplements.
Other strategies that may help include:
  • Take your baby for a walk or for a ride in the car. Try a baby safe swing.
  • Position your baby on the tummy, across your lap. Gently rub your baby's back.
  • Consider learning baby massage.
  • Swaddle your baby in a soft blanket.
  • Rock your baby in a rocking chair or in your arms. Hold your baby close and bounce or walk gently.
  • Bathe your baby in warm water.
  • Let your baby use a pacifier.
  • Make sure your baby isn't too warm or cold.
  • Try skin-to-skin contact.

Support for Parents

It is upsetting to see your baby crying and not being able to help. The high-pitched crying of a colicky baby is also difficult for anyone to listen to. Try to keep in mind that most babies with colic are healthy. Most will outgrow colic by 3-4 months of age. Know that it is not your fault that the baby does not stop crying. To help you get through this period consider:
  • Taking some time to distract yourself from the intensity of the crying. Place your baby in a safe crib and go to a nearby room to watch television or listen to music.
  • Taking a break. Ask your family members, friends, or a sitter to help care for your baby.
If you ever feel angry or violent towards the baby, put your baby in a safe place and step out of the room. Call someone for help right away, like your doctor. There are many services available to help you deal with your emotions. The doctor can refer you to these services.
 

RESOURCES

Healthychildren.org – American Academy of Pediatrics
http://www.healthychildren.org

Nemours' KidsHealth
http://www.kidshealth.org

 

CANADIAN RESOURCES

About Kids Health
http://www.aboutkidshealth.ca

Health Canada
http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca

 

References


Colic. Family Doctor—American Academy of Family Physicians website. Available at: http://familydoctor.org/familydoctor/en/diseases-conditions/colic.html. Updated July 2013. Accessed February 17, 2014.


Colic. Healthy Children—American Academy of Pediatrics website. Available at: http://www.healthychildren.org/english/ages-stages/baby/crying-colic/pages/colic.aspx?nfstatus=401&nftoken=00000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000000&nfstatusdescription=ERROR%3a+No+local+token. Updated October 31, 2013. Accessed February 17, 2014.


Infantile colic. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed. Updated February 14, 2014. Accessed February 17, 2014.


5/14/2010 DynaMed's Systematic Literature Surveillance http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed: Aviner S, Berkovitch M, et al. Use of a homeopathic preparation for "infantile colic" and an apparent life-threatening event. Pediatrics. 2010;125(2):e318-323.


8/23/2010 DynaMed's Systematic Literature Surveillance http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed: Savino F, Cordisco L, et al. Lactobacillus reuteri DSM 17 938 in infantile colic: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Pediatrics. 2010 Aug 16. [Epub ahead of print]


4/7/2014 DynaMed's Systematic Literature Surveillance http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed: Indrio F, Di Mauro A, et al. Prophylactic use of a probiotic in the prevention of colic, regurgitation, and functional constipation: a randomized clinical trial. JAMA Pediatr. 2014 Mar 1;168(3):228-233.

 

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