One of the great concerns of parents of newborn babies is the famous infant colic, which affects up to 40 percent of newborn babies. The baby cries with no way to calm him down, and it’s exasperating.
They usually appear around the second or third week of life and last until about the fourth month. Infant colic is defined as crying for more than three hours a day, more than three days a week, and for more than three weeks. The most common is that the crying appears at the end of the day, towards the evening-night.
Although its origin is not known for sure, and it is mainly aimed at the immaturity of the digestive system, there are some tips to take into account to prevent infant colic , as far as possible, when feeding.
At mealtime, the environment must be calm so that the baby eats calmly, because if he is restless and irritable, or if he eats with great anxiety, he will swallow more air. It can also be useful to calm him down before offering him food (in your arms, with a pacifier…).
Prevent you from eating hungry
As a result of the above, it is important that we know how to interpret the hunger signals and feed him as soon as possible. Intense crying is already a late sign.
Avoid being late at feeding time, because if the baby arrives very hungry for feedings, he will feed eagerly and swallow a lot of air when doing so. If you notice that the baby is restless and starts to make noises, it is likely that he is already hungry.
Sometimes we notice that the milk comes out very quickly or in a jet from the breast and the baby “can’t cope”, so it is better to let it flow a little to prevent the baby from having to swallow quickly and swallow much more air.
Good posture for eating
If we give the bottle , ensure that the baby is in a semi-incorporated position . As suggested by the Kassing method, the way of giving the bottle that is the closest thing to breastfeeding, we put the baby upright, as vertical as possible, semi-seated, holding his head with one hand. We slightly raise the bottle so that the teat is completely full of milk (and does not swallow air). As the end of the feeding approaches, it may be necessary to lay the baby down a bit to keep the teat full of milk.
If we breastfeed , look for a position to breastfeed in which we ensure a good grip, the most used in newborns until breastfeeding is established is the cradle position , the most classic. The mother sits upright and the baby is positioned on its side with its head and neck supported by the mother’s forearm and body on the stomach.
Mom can put a pillow or cushion behind her and use a nursing pillow on her lap. This will give you more support and prevent strain on your shoulders and back.
Try to expel gas after each feed . For this there are several positions, such as with the baby incorporated on the shoulder and gently patting him on the back. We can also put the baby sitting on our legs for a few minutes to encourage burping. Many babies will not pass gas and there will be no burping, but they may be calm, so don’t insist either.
If the baby is bottle-fed, there are some specific colic bottles that could help reduce the air that remains inside.
The most suitable teats are the rounded ones, the so-called physiological ones , and not anatomical ones (which are flattened on one side), since it has been studied that with these teats the suction is more similar to that of suckling babies.
Do not shake the bottle
When preparing the bottle for feeding, it is important not to shake it too much, because shaking it produces bubbles that the baby then swallows. In its lagura, stir with a spoon until the formula dissolves well.
A good chest latch
A poor latch causes the baby to swallow air. For this reason, in babies who are breastfed, we must make sure that the latch is good and that we do not hear a click. There is no air inside the chest, so if the latch is good, the baby should not swallow air.
A good latch involves full insertion and placement of the nipple close to the baby’s soft palate, at the back of the oral cavity. The nipple practically cannot be seen around the baby’s mouth, which occupies a large part of the mammary areola.
How to relieve colic
Even so, even if we take all these precautions, the colic may not go away, but we do minimize the discomfort in the baby.
To calm them down, we can alleviate them by doing certain “exercises” by moving their legs as if they were pedaling, or by doing gentle, circular abdominal massages in a clockwise direction. Placing it upside down on our forearm while we walk it is another very effective.
In addition to all these tips to prevent or relieve gas in the baby , remember not to give infusions, which can be dangerous for the baby, or sugary drinks, or medications without consulting the pediatrician.