Bringing the newborn home is the best moment. The family gets filled with joy and happiness and everyone marvels at the baby who sleeps eats pee, and repeats. I was super excited as I waited to witness the moment for 9 long months. A few weeks later, one day, he broke into ear-shattering wails, accompanied with clenched fists and an unhappy red face. We all were trying hard to comfort him but his heartbreaking loud cries were on repeat mode. These stressful episodes occurred every night at the same time and it seemed like forever. And that’s when I realized, I have entered the world of colic.
All babies cry, and that’s the only way for them to communicate. They cry when they are hungry, when they have a wet diaper or when they want to sleep. So it’s quite a normal thing. And being their parent, we respond to meet those needs. But colicky babies start crying for no reason and have no cure. Colic is not a disease, it is just a behavior. It’s just a term for excessive crying in healthy babies and trust me there is no solution to it except for passing time. Colic issues are common and occur 1 in every 5 infants.
These fussy episodes can go for hours and hours and usually late into the night. It’s extremely difficult to calm a colicky baby. We are going through the phase and I am very much aware of the fact that how frustrating it becomes at times to keep on listening to your loved one crying for so long. In the initial days, I got so worried and consulted many pediatricians for the same. But all of them said colic is a normal thing and it vanishes as the baby grows.
• Constant crying for no apparent reasons
• Clenching their fists and curling up their legs
• Crying like they are in pain
• Turning red when crying
If you find any of the above signs in your baby, be ready to deal with the sleepless nights.
Causes of Colic in Babies:
As a new mother, many questions popped into my mind when I came to know about this frightening word. What causes my little munchkin to cry a lot? Is he terrified? Am I not a good mother? Is he not happy with me? All these thoughts kept on buzzing and I started feeling sad. After lots of researches and studies, I finally got answers to all my questions. Colic is caused by many reasons and few among them are:
• Pain or discomfort from gas
• Weakened digestive system
• Overfeeding or underfeeding
• An emotional reaction to fear or excitement
Yes, it is the toughest part. Dealing with colicky babies will make you go nuts and might frustrate you. So, I will be sharing my experience of what I do to calm my munchkin down.
1. Take him for a ride: Taking your little human for a car drive or riding him in his stroller may work sometime. I have tried this many times and it works. My baby gets comfortable when we take him outside for a drive. Playing soft music or bhajans or white noise also helps in relieving colic pain.
2. Swaddle the baby: Sometimes babies cry due to fear and swaddling will help him to be comfortable. Love them, cuddle them and make them feel as if they are still in the womb. The warmth of the mother’s touch is enough to calm them down. Try giving skin to skin contact.
3. Treat the gas trouble: If you feel that colic is due to gas trouble then belly massages and exercises may work. I use to apply heeng paste around his belly button to treat the gas troubles. This is tried and tested desi nuskha and it always works.
4. Rocking and swinging: Holding and rocking the baby also helps in relieving the colic issues. I have also tried using infant swing and let me tell you one thing that it does wonders.
5. Using over counter medicines: My pediatrician already provided me with colic-aid drops at the time of discharge. Giving them twice a day helps to relieve the colic and gas issues. Do consult your doctor before giving them to your baby.