How a parent or caregiver can cope with having a colicky baby

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colicky baby

Having a colicky baby is exhausting, anxiety inducing and can contribute to postnatal mental health problems for new parents in the postnatal period. Colic, whilst incredibly challenging for parents to experience, is not harmful and there is no evidence to suggest any long-term harm or problems for babies.

For some babies, colic is a symptom with an underlying cause, which is why it is important to speak to your healthcare professional for a full assessment of your baby to see if there are any triggers you might be able eliminate. It also means you have additional support and guidance which can be offered by your GP or health visitor (you can also see my top tips for coping with colic here ). These explore some of the underlying causes for colic and also provide some helpful tips you can try with your baby to help lessen the amount of crying and ease your baby’s colic symptoms. Every baby is different, and every day is different, so trying these tips regularly and finding what works for your baby can be beneficial for both of you.

For some babies, temporary lactose intolerance is the cause of their colic symptoms. Colief Infant Drops contain the enzyme lactase which can help to break down the sugar lactose into simpler sugars galactose and glucose, making it easier to fully digest and reducing your baby’s discomfort . For most babies the colic symptoms will subside around 3-4 months postnatal as the gut matures and develops.

Finally, whilst it is important to respond to your baby’s cries and meet their needs in order to support brain development and foster attachment, ensuring your baby’s safety takes precedence above all else. It can be very stressful having a baby with colic and it is okay if you begin to feel angry or frustrated with your baby to place them down in a safe space and take yourself into a different room for a break. In this time, you can make yourself a drink, put on some music, phone a friend or family member and take some deep breaths. If you have a partner, taking turns with them in providing primary care for some time can be an effective way to share the parenting responsibilities. You can return to your baby or swap back again when you are calmer with a clearer mind allowing you to retry some of the colic relief tips with a fresh perspective. There are also some colic support groups available which can help provide a shared experience with colic letting you know that you are not alone in the experiences and feelings you are having.

Whilst the days can feel very long as a parent to a baby, particularly with colic, there is an end in sight, as most babies stop experiencing colic symptoms by 3-4 months postnatal. You are doing an incredible job, you’ve got this!

Check Angie’s video

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