Infantile Colic

2017-10-18

Share this Article

Reference:

Infantile Colic by Jeremy et al; Am Fam Physician 2015 Oct

UpToDate

Rudolph's Pediatrics

Colic

Up to 40% of infants might have colic in the first 3 months of their life.

A baby with colic will typically cry for more than 3 hours a day, this happens more than three times a week and the crying episodes will be there for more than 3 weeks.  There should also be no other medical reason for the crying.


What causes your baby to have colic?

  1. Problems with the gut flora (the good bacteria that we all have in our intestines)
  2. Sensitivity to lactose or certain proteins.
  3. Immaturity of the intestine
  4. Incorrect feeding technique (baby swallowing air, eating to much or to little)
  5. Smoking in the mother
  6. Reflux


When should you worry?

It is always safer to get your baby checked out by a professional if there is a sudden change in his/her behaviour, like excessive crying.

Symptoms that can be a sign of a severe problem are:

  1. The baby is very sleepy
  2. Baby is having very loose stool
  3. Baby is having swelling of his genitalia
  4. Baby is vomiting
  5. Tummy is distended
  6. Baby is having fever

What treatment is available?

Parents of babies with colic need to be calm and also look for support from family like grandparents to help cope with a crying baby.

Some things the doctor can prescribe are:

  1. Probiotics
  2. Telement drops
  3. Colic drops (always make sure to consult your doctor, some colic preparations might be harmful for your baby)
  4. Change the mother's diet if she is breastfeeding (cow's milk, fish, nuts)
  5. Changing the formula to something easier to digest (ask your doctor)

It is important to not frequently move from one formula to another since this can make the symptoms worse.

Most babies will outgrow colic by the age of 3 months