Surviving the “C” Word
So just what the heck is colic anyways? Well, it’s defined as severe, often fluctuating pain in the abdomen caused by intestinal gas or obstruction in the intestines and suffered especially by babies. You know it best as insane screaming by your little bundle of joy.
But let’s break colic down to something many of us experience: severe acid reflux or gas. The kind that makes you go lie down on your side while you try to control your breathing, hunched over in pain. It’s extremely uncomfortable, right? Well, for your baby it’s a dull, constant ache and extremely painful. Poor things.
Survival Options for Colicky Babies
1. Aloe is your baby’s BFF. Yep, aloe isn’t just for helping sunburns! Digestible aloe drink (do not—I repeat do not—drink the aloe lotion!) is safe and effective in soothing a baby’s upset tummy and actually heals the digestive tract of blockages while soothing gas pains. Try mixing one teaspoon liquid aloe in 4 ounces of water (check with your pediatrician first, always).
2. Get your baby moving. Motion or constant movement is a calming sensation to a baby who is used to constant motion in the womb. So get creative and try driving your little one around the block before nap time or experiment with swings and vibrating-bouncing chairs. Do what you can to get them moving!
3. Make some (white) noise. Along with movement, noise in the womb is also a constant. Again, its all about his or her comfort level—and the womb is a noisy, bumpy place. Ever notice that your baby can sleep peacefully at a loud party but won’t sleep a wink in a quiet house? White noise is best, such as a box fan, the dryer or a white-noise maker and even, in some cases, the vacuum. If you don’t have something that makes white noise, hop to it!
4. Talk to your doctor. It’s always a good idea to talk to your doctor if your baby is colicky. If you suspect allergies, you can try pre-digested formulas and consider switching to organic baby products. Breastfeeding moms can try to eliminate allergens from their diets as well. But be sure to talk to your doctor about what’s best for your baby (and your sanity)!
Do you have a colicky baby or have you? How did you get through it? Share your experiences in the comments! —Jessica