Almost nothing frightens new parents more than baby colic. New parents struggle with the condition because they just want their child to feel relief. They feel scared and even frustrated when the crying won’t stop, and it makes them feel as though they are doing a bad job.
To make things a little tougher on parents, colic is hard to diagnose. Granted, medical researchers have delved into the condition quite a bit, but there are still mysteries surrounding colic. Because it’s hard to diagnose, having a definitive symptom checklist is almost impossible. Still, there are some guidelines that can help.
Medical research has tried to make links between digestion issues and colic, but data seems to move away from this connection. It is important to keep track of any irregularities in your baby’s digestion and potty habits.
You may want to pay attention to when your baby is crying. There is actually some level of regularity in a colicky baby’s crying. Make note of when the crying is taking place and for how long. You may also find that it occurs after certain activities such as feeding. One thing to also consider is whether your baby is crying for no real reason at all.
Another characteristic of colic tends to be how your baby cries. When walking around a grocery or department store, you may recall times when you’ve heard an infant cry and when you’ve heard an infant cry. There is a distinct difference in their cry and the physical action of this intense cry can certainly up the ante for your baby’s discomfort.
One surprise colic symptom deals with the physical way your baby may be trying to tell you something isn’t quite right. Their legs may curl up, and they may clench their fists. It is important to check for these things when the baby is at rest or when you are holding or feeding your baby.
It is important to remember, though, that experts say there are simple things at home to make your baby find some relief. Calming sounds, like humming, for the baby can help. A colicky baby can be photosensitive, so a darker room can be helpful. Movement can help a colicky baby feel better. Instead of sitting while holding your baby, move around the room. Even taking a ride in a car can be soothing. Do your best to keep your baby from swallowing too much air when they eat. Be sure your baby sits up during meals and look into different bottle & nipple designs that aid in less air being taken in.
Breastfeeding, in terms of colic, can be somewhat murky territory. While some experts believe there is a connection between colic and something in a breastfeeding mother’s diet, others do not. Research is still being done, and as noted before, contact your family doctor immediately if you have any concerns. More importantly, have confidence that even if you are a new parent, you’ll do right by your baby.