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Colic in Babies

Colic generally appears in a baby very soon after birth with symptoms of excessive crying and turning red, poor sleep patterns and nursing problems. Although no one really knows what causes it, some maintain that food sensitivity is the sole cause of colic in babies; others claim that its origins are in gastro-intestinal upsets while others insist that it arises from an undeveloped nervous system. Yet another school of thought is that the cause is likely to be not one, but a combination of these possibilities.

Bathurst Chiropractor, Ben Purcell says that it is interesting that the symptoms of colic appear very soon after birth. He goes on to explain that when babies are in pain or discomfort, being unable to explain what is wrong, tell parents where it hurts or what could relieve that pain the only thing they can do is cry.

Trauma during birth can result in functional problems within the spine and cranial problems. Chiropractors work with both. If functional problems, (subluxations), are the source of the baby’s discomfort, relieving them may result in less crying and more sleep for all concerned!

smiling-baby

Chiropractic theory maintains that a subluxation can lead to neurological dysfunction. If the neural function is disrupted, the affected body part may not function properly. It is theorised that Chiropractic care removes the source of irritation, allowing the body to heal and operate properly.

If you have a baby, who appears otherwise healthy and well fed but who is crying excessively and frequently, call Bathurst Chiropractic today on (02) 6331 1004 to discuss your options.

What is Colic?

The medical definition of colic is when a baby cries for more than three hours a day, more than three days a week and for longer than three weeks in babies who appear otherwise healthy. Although it often begins within the first weeks of a baby’s life and usually ceases by four months, some babies still have the problem at six months.

Babies show their distress by intense crying, often clenching their fists, drawing their knees up to their tummies and arching their backs. Unfortunately, these prolonged episodes of crying most usually happen in the evening or at night, causing loss of sleep for all the family.

How You Can Help Your Colicky Baby

  • Comfort your crying baby by holding them, vary the position, try on your shoulder, tummy down on your forearm or lap or cradled in your arms. Alternatively wrap him in a blanket or baby sling.
  • If you are bottle-feeding, use a bottle teat that allows milk to flow more quickly. This, along with sitting your baby as upright as possible during feeding will help to prevent him swallowing air with the milk but it is also important to help him to bring up any trapped wind after feeding. It is believed that some spicy foods, alcohol and caffeine-containing drinks can aggravate colic so, if you are breast-feeding, avoiding these may help.
  • Taking your baby for a drive in the car or a walk in the pram can help to soothe a crying baby as they like the motion. Gently rubbing the tummy or the back or a warm bath may also help to soothe baby to sleep.

At Bathurst, Chiropractic care is gentle, safe and comfortable for babies, using fingertip pressures that an adult could comfortably tolerate over a closed eyelid as well as condition-specific massage. Call Bathurst Chiropractic today on (02) 6331 1004 for more advice.