Understanding Infant Colic
- A common problem in infants.
- Colic defines periods of inconsolable crying without any discernible reason although the baby is healthy.
- Onset is usually within a few weeks of birth and disappears, often very suddenly by the baby’s fourth month.
- It is important that a doctor first rules out other causes of crying before a baby is considered to be colic.
- Colic is not a serious problem but distresses other family members – it is important to take breaks and support each other!
Signs and Symptoms
- Excessive, intense crying or screaming episodes, lasting for few hours and is often worse in the evenings
- Baby draws up legs, clench fists and grimace
- Passing of wind, usually at the end of a ‘colicky’ period.
- Flushed face.
- Stomach appears distended after feeding.
- Other symptoms may include refusal to eat and difficulty falling or staying asleep.
Causes of Infant Colic
- Cause not completely known.
- Infant colic is thought to be caused by:
- Excessive amounts of air swallowed during feeding or crying
- Spasm of the intestine
- Indigestion and hunger
- Food allergy
- Lactose intolerance
- Gut flora