Being a new parent is stressful. Being a parent of a baby of colic is that much more so, but here’s something to take comfort in. Your baby will stop crying so much, usually by six months of age, and is very likely to grow up to be healthy and happy.
In one study published in the Journal of Pediatrics, researchers surveyed parents in Australia once their children were two to three years old. They compared the outcomes of the babies who had colic to the babies who didn’t have colic. The babies who had colic and whose crying stopped on its own by the time they were six months old showed no ill effects as they got older.
Among the two groups, there were no statistically significant differences in the children’s behavior, temperament, ability to self-regulate, and family functioning.
Knowing this, you can let out a sigh of relief. Colic is a bump in the road that you and your baby will get over. As long as you’ve talked to your pediatrician about your baby’s crying and your baby has been given a clean bill of health (your baby is growing and thriving), take comfort in knowing that this will pass.
Also make sure you’re not so worried about colic that you’re not thoroughly enjoying your baby’s times of calm, smiles, and coos.
What to do today
It’s so helpful to know that colic will end, but you still need to get through today. Taking care of a baby who cries excessively is frustrating. Shaken baby syndrome, unfortunately, happens and causes devastating head trauma. Every step you take to lower your stress level and help your baby get through colic is worthwhile.
Here are some things you can do today for calmer days.
Try probiotic drops.
Colic may happen in part because of a lack of diversity among bacteria in your baby’s gut, which can lead to gas, constipation, and discomfort. And researchers have discovered that babies with colic tend to have lower amounts of beneficial bacteria in their gut, Lactobacilli and Bifidobacterium.
You can replace the beneficial bacteria by giving your baby probiotics
. Research has shown that giving the supplements can significantly reduce the amount of time your baby spends crying.
Colic Relief Plus® by Second to Mom uses two specific strains that have been tested in medical studies
to benefit babies with colic. According to one study that will be published soon, babies who were given the probiotic drops cried 60% less after seven to 21 days of taking the supplement daily.
These supplements are backed by research and can lead to less discomfort and crying for your baby. It’s worth giving them a try.
During a crying spell, put your baby safely in a crib.
You’ve tried everything to get your baby to stop crying: feeding, burping, a diaper change, rocking, and comforting, but your baby is still crying. If you’re reaching the point of frustration, put your baby in the crib on his or her back without blankets or toys. Then go into another room and do something that will be calming for you, whether it’s deep breathing or listening to music. After 10 minutes of focusing on you, check on your baby.
Go for a walk or take a drive.
The motion of the stroller or car may help quiet your baby and may lead to sleep. Cruise the streets of your neighborhood, either on foot or by car, to help your baby settle down. If your baby prefers being close to you while you walk, skip the stroller and use a baby carrier. You’ll get an endorphin boost from some exercise and fresh air, and your baby will get the calming comfort of motion and closeness.
Try music or white noise.
The soothing sounds may calm your baby and can help your baby nap time or settle down for the night. You can also make a “Shh” sound near your baby’s ear as you rock and cradle your infant to mimic the sounds from the womb, which is calming to a newborn.
Call on your partner, friends, and family for a break.
Take turns with your partner when you’re trying to calm your baby during a crying spell. And there’s nothing wrong with asking friends or family members to take care of your baby while you recharge. Many infants tend to cry at the same time every day, typically in the evenings after 5 p.m. Schedule to have a loving friend or family member stop by during those times to rock or comfort your baby while you take a walk by yourself or get into a bubble bath.
One day, your child will be running around as a healthy and happy toddler, and colic will be a distant memory. Soak up these precious newborn moments and take heart in knowing your baby will grow into a vibrant and healthy child.
To learn more about how infant probiotic drops are used to treat fussy newborns, browse through our Education Center — we’re here to help.