If your newborn suffers from daily bouts of inconsolable crying, he may be experiencing colic. Colic affects between 10 to 25 percent of newborn babies and usually hits hardest around a baby’s sixth week of life. In addition to the sudden onset of crying, if your baby is colicky he may be gassy, spit up, pull his legs toward his chest or have a belly that feels hard to the touch. Fortunately for most babies, colic resolves on its own by the time the baby is 4 months old. Armed with a bit of information, you can prevent croup.
Monitor your baby’s feedings. If your baby’s bouts of crying always seem to occur during feedings or immediately following feedings and is accompanied by spit up, she may be suffering from reflux. Reflux is a painful condition that involves the contents of your baby’s stomach coming back up through her esophagus. If your baby’s crying always seems to happen 30 to 60 minutes after a feeding, she may have an allergy to your breast milk or her infant formula. Cutting foods from your diet that may irritate your baby’s stomach or changing to a gentler formula can help you prevent colic.
Stay smoke-free. Babies with mothers who smoke are more likely to suffer from colic; breastfeeding mothers who smoke put their babies at an even greater risk for becoming colicky. Since tobacco smoke may irritate your baby’s lungs, which can result in colic, keeping your baby away from all smokers can help reduce his risk of developing colic.
Meet your baby’s needs. Babies cry when they are hungry, tired, in need of a diaper change or are too hot or too cold. Making sure that your baby’s needs are met can help prevent colic. Since over-stimulation can also trigger colic, it’s important to watch for signs that your baby may be becoming over stimulated. If you notice your baby becoming irritable, change her environment.