By Alex MlynekUpdated Mar 06, 2017
You’ve fed your baby, changed his diaper, made sure he isn’t sick, checked to see if he’s comfortably dressed, and still there’s no relief from the hours of crying. It could be colic, especially if your little one is less than four months old and is inexplicably irritable, fussy or cries for three hours or more in a row each day, at least three days a week for at least a week, and there are no signs of failure to thrive. For many parents, colic is an absolute nightmare. And while some say you just have to get through it until it passes, others swear by certain remedies.Photo: iStockphoto
A colicky babe can be extremely hard on parents—it’s natural to get frustrated and it doesn’t mean you’re a bad parent. So the No. 1 tip we can offer is to get someone to come over and hold your baby so you can get some sleep, take a break, exercise, or eat something nourishing. Call on a friend, a family member or a postpartum doula every day for help. It’s essential to your health.Photo: iStockphoto
Many parents who are on the other side of colic recommend a carrier or a wrap. It will help give your arms a rest, keep babe close to you, and, best of all, comfort them with motion. Or, you may consider taking them out for a walk in a stroller. Remember, your baby was used to constant movement in the womb, and is still adjusting to life on the outside. Plus, you can both get some fresh air—a change of scenery and the sun on your face may do wonders—and you won’t feel stuck inside, which is important, because getting through colic is in part a mental game.Photo: iStockphoto
Many parents say that bouncing or rolling in a circular motion on an exercise ball helped calm their colicky baby.Photo: iStockphoto
Some newborns may crave the constant whooshing sound of the womb, so a sound machine, or some other consistent noise, could help bring comfort. That said, other babies may be overstimulated by sound, so spending time in a quiet and dark room may offer relief. You’ll have to experiment and see what your baby likes.
Conair white noise machine, Amazon, $46Photo: Amazon
Cuddling skin-to-skin (that is, bare chest to bare chest) helps regulate your baby’s temperature, heart rate and breathing, so could offer some relief to an upset little one. It also lowers a parent’s blood pressure and heart rate, which may help you manage the stress of a colicky baby.Photo: iStockphoto
Some moms say that when they stopped drinking cow’s milk, their colicky baby was much happier. Talk to your baby’s doctor about trying a short-term elimination of milk from your diet. For formula-fed babies, a two-week doctor-approved trial of an extensively hydrolized formula can be considered.Photo: iStockphoto
Ovol drops are designed to get trapped gas moving along by breaking up gas bubbles, which may help make a colicky baby more comfortable. Ask your child’s doctor if this product is a good fit for your little one.
Ovol drops, $10, walmart.ca
Gripe water is a classic colic or intestinal pain reliever. Its ingredients depend on the brand, but often include bicarbonate and a herbal component, like fennel or dill. Do talk to your doctor about whether they’d advise use of this product.
Kidz Kolik Alcohol-Free Gripe Water, $5, well.ca
Many parents swear that probiotic drops helped their colicky babies, presumably by improving their gut health. But there have been mixed results from studies about whether Lactobacillus reuteri may help with colic, so talk to your doctor about whether probiotics is something you should try with your baby.
BioGaia Protectis Probiotic Drops, $50, well.ca
Read more: Fussy baby: Is it colic?How to soothe your baby like a boss Colic for crying out loud