Are you spending late nights pacing around the house, bouncing your baby gently up and down while humming and doing a jig? You must have a colicky baby! It may seem like you will never get a good night’s sleep—or even a moment to enjoy your favorite new TV show—without a baby screeching in your ear, but hope is in sight. There are some tips and tricks you can try to relieve your gassy baby, especially if you’ve already tried the old standby, burping, to no avail.
Why is Your Baby Gassy?
Gas can make your infant very uncomfortable and fussy. Those air bubbles your little one swallows can easily get trapped in her belly, leading to a buildup of pressure. The only way to relieve that gas is to pass it, and boy will your baby do just that! On average, your baby will pass gas between 13 and 21 times a day. When your baby can’t readily get rid of that trapped air, she may start to become fussy, characterized by lots of crying and squirming. Gas can be caused by any number of things, from swallowing too much air and crying to bottle or breast feeding and even sucking on a pacifier. You’ll know your baby is experiencing discomfort due to bloating and burping, cramping, crying, straining and ultimately passing gas.
Tips and Tricks
If your baby is fussy and gassy but is having trouble passing the gas himself, there are some tips and tricks to help him out. Take your baby on a bicycle ride—no, not on a real bike, but rather in your living room. Place your baby on a blanket on the floor, then take his legs and pump them gently back and forth to work out the gas. Infant massage is another popular option, as is giving him plenty of tummy time and taking a warm, bubbly bath, all of which will help your baby pass the gas that’s causing him discomfort.
When feeding your baby, check that his head is higher than his stomach so the milk gets to the bottom of his belly quicker and the air stays close to the top. This type of gas is easiest to get out through burping. Since gas bubbles form most often from the gulping of air, use a slow-flow nipple if you find your baby is sucking down his bottle like there’s no tomorrow. Try burping your baby after each feeding, even if he doesn’t always give you one.
You may also want to experiment with different foods. Cut out fruit juice, which your little one’s body has a hard time processing. Nix the caffeine in your diet if you’re breastfeeding, and if you’re bottle feeding, switch brands of formula and see if that helps. You can also try Mommy’s Bliss Gripe water, a gentle liquid formula designed to help baby pass gas and calm bouts of hiccups and discomfort, and it could be just the thing for your fussy baby.
The good news is, there’s a light at the end of the tunnel. Your baby is constantly growing and developing, and will likely grow out of her gassy stage before you know it.