Breastfeeding a Colicky Baby - How Can a Mom Stop the Pain?

By: Vickie Barnes

Many women choose to breast feed because the "breast is best" however there are other mothers that breastfeed as well simply to avoid a colicky baby. Unfortunately, it does not work this way and colic is an equal opportunity condition that affects babies that are breast fed, bottle fed, and those that are fed both. However, there are a variety of things you can do to help soothe your baby's colic and reduce the pain.

Colic is not a condition that is well understood and while there are many natural and conventional remedies for this condition they are not all the right treatment for every baby. As a result, many parents try many things, sometimes to no avail, to help stop the pain of colic and have a happy and healthy baby. Regardless, as a breastfeeding mom you should keep trying remedies that might help your baby's colic until you find the right one or until your baby outgrows the colic stage. There are some things you can do as a mom as well that will possibly help.

Unfortunately, many moms that breastfeed don't burp their baby as much as needed simply because they mistakenly believe their baby is not getting too much air because they aren't' being bottle fed. This is not the case at all as breast fed babies also eat too quickly and gulp air as well. Since this air ends up in the intestines and is frequently blamed for colic pain you should burp your baby before breastfeeding and then after feeding on each breast and intermittently in between if it seems appropriate.

Another tip that breastfeeding moms should try when their baby is colicky is to reduce the amount of dairy products consumed. This might seem odd, but many babies have an allergy or sensitivity to milk proteins that are passed from the mother to the child through breast milk. As a result, if you eat a lot of dairy products and have a colicky baby stop eating diary for a few weeks and see how your baby responds. There is a big chance it will help out considerably. Another suggestion is to stop consuming large amounts of caffeine because this is transmitted to the baby through the breast milk and most babies that ingest caffeine become irritable to say the least.

You should also hold a colicky baby under four months of age in order to soothe their discomfort from colic. This is because it has been proven that babies held more than three hours a day suffer less from colic than babies that are not held. Also, you won't be spoiling your baby if he is less than 4 months of age so hold them as long as you would like to relieve their pain and help the whole family feel better.

Colic can be difficult for mother and baby and the stress it causes frequently makes the situation worse. This is because nobody is getting any rest and the mother is still recovering from delivery not to mention raging hormones and trying to figure out how to care for a new life. Obviously, it can take a little getting used to not to mention be overwhelming at first. So, if you are a new mom with a colicky baby do your best to relax and let all those friends and family members help while they are still offering! You will love the time to decompress and regenerate and your baby will benefit because you won't be as stressed and the baby will feel this and not have as much colic.
Remember, breastfeeding is one of the best things you can do for your child and you should continue doing it as long as possible. You will develop a stronger relationship with your baby and probably feel more relaxed as well as long as you have made the above changes and your baby's colic has been resolved as a result.

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Vickie Barnes is a colic veteran of two colicky babies. Please visit her website, for more support and resources for dealing with colic.

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