Miss S and A-Man were both colicky babies, and it was rough. I think that it was hardest with A-Man because Mr. C was such an easy baby, so I had no idea what was going on. I thought that I was just a terrible mom, and I couldn’t keep my baby happy. None of that is true!
Thankfully, Miss S is my fourth baby, so I’m an old pro by now! I knew how to recognize colic, and how to help her with her colic from the very beginning. I wish I knew more about colic when I was facing it the first time, so I thought I’d share some of what I learned with you!
8 Things All Moms Should Know About Colic
I received a free sample of [Gerber® Good Start® Soothe infant formula or Gerber Soothe® probiotic colic drops] from Gerber. My thoughts and opinions are by my own
What is Colic?
Colic is defined as a healthy baby crying (inconsolably) for at least 3 hours a day, on at least 3 days a week, for at least 3 weeks. Babies will cry more often than normal while teething or during a sleep regression, which is why there are specific lengths of time defining colic.
When is Colic Most Likely?
Colic typically starts when your baby is around 2-3 weeks old and peaks around 6 weeks. The good news is that most babies are typically done with colic by the time they’re 3-4 months. I know it seems like a long time while you’re in the middle of it, but it does get better, I promise.
Babies are also more likely to cry from colic in the evening and night than they are in the morning. This can make it really hard on families, as that’s when they typically are ready to start relaxing from a long day.
Crying Isn’t Necessarily Colic
Babies cry for all sorts of reasons. It’s their only way to communicate. Babies can cry because they’re hungry, tired, wet, hurt, sick, grumpy, or for tons of other reasons. Colic is more than just crying. It’s when babies cry even though nothing is wrong. If you’ve tried rocking your baby, changing their diaper, and feeding them and they’re still upset hours later? It’s probably colic.
How to Help With Colic
Thankfully there are tons of ways to try to help your baby with colic! Often vibration and movement helps, so many families find it helpful to take a car ride or hold their child’s carseat on top of the dryer. Miss S had an easier time in her swing, and she wanted it swinging as fast as it would go. You can also try swaddling your baby tightly or playing some white noise to help them settle. If you’re breastfeeding, you can try Gerber® Soothe Probiotic Colic Drops, and if you’re formula feeding, you can try a colic-friendly formula like Gerber® Good Start® Soothe formula.
Breastfed Babies Can Have Colic
When A-Man had colic I had many well-meaning friends telling me that it couldn’t be colic because I was breastfeeding, and breastfed babies can’t have colic. Well, unfortunately, yes they can. Research has shown that colic may be caused by a type of bacteria in a baby’s digestive system, so it can happen to any baby.
Colic Isn’t Your Fault
If you take only one thing from this whole post, let it be this. Colic is not your fault. Having a baby who cries does not make you a terrible mother, I promise. Any baby can get colic. Any mom can have a colicky baby. All babies cry. Do what you can to comfort your baby, cry with them when you need to, and know that there’s a light at the end of the tunnel.
Probiotics are Good for Colicky Babies
Because research has shown that colic may be caused by a type of bacteria in a baby’s digestive system, it’s also shown that probiotics can reduce crying time in colicky babies. Isn’t that what we all want? One less minute of crying sounds good to me!
Your baby can get probiotics in lots of ways. First, if you’re breastfeeding and you take probiotics yourself, they will be passed to your baby when nursing. You can also add Gerber® Soothe Probiotic Drops to help get your baby all the probiotics that they need.
It’s Okay to Take a Break From Your Colicky Baby
Having a baby with colic is really hard. The constant crying is enough to make any mom question her sanity. It is okay to need a break from your colicky baby. Maybe your husband and you can take turns comforting the baby. Maybe it means putting your baby in a safe place, like the crib or strapped into a swing, and taking a moment to hide in the bathroom with the water running to just not hear screaming for a second.
Don’t feel like a bad mom because you are struggling with a colicky baby. Know that there is a light at the end of the tunnel. No babies have colic forever. You can get through this!