Colic is frequent, prolonged and intense crying or fussiness during a healthy infant. Colic are often particularly frustrating for folks because the baby's distress occurs for no apparent reason and no amount of consoling seems to bring any relief. These episodes often occur within the evening, when parents themselves are often tired.
Episodes of colic usually peak when an infant is about 6 weeks old and decline significantly after 3 to 4 months aged. While the excessive crying will resolve with time, managing colic adds significant stress to caring for your newborn child.
You can take steps which will lessen the severity and duration of colic episodes, alleviate your own stress, and bolster confidence in your parent-child connection.
Fussing and crying are normal for infants, especially during the primary three months. And the range for what's normal crying is difficult to pin down. In general, colic is defined as crying for 3 or more hours each day, three or more days every week , for 3 or more weeks.
Features of colic may include the following:
Ø Intense crying that may seem more like screaming or an expression of pain
Ø Crying for no apparent reason, unlike crying to express hunger or the need for a diaper change
Ø Extreme fussiness even after crying has diminished
Ø Predictable timing, with episodes often occurring in the evening
Ø Facial discoloring, such as reddening of the face or paler skin around the mouth
Ø Bodily tension, such as pulled up or stiffened legs, stiffened arms, clenched fists, arched back, or tense abdomen
When to see a doctor
Excessive, inconsolable crying could also be colic or a sign of an illness or condition that causes pain or discomfort. Schedule a meeting together with your child's doctor for a radical exam if your infant experiences excessive crying or other signs or symptoms of colic.
The cause of colic is unknown. It may result from numerous contributing factors. While a number of causes have been explored, it's difficult for researchers to account for all the important features, such as why it usually begins late in the first month of life, how it varies among infants, why it happens at certain times of day and why it resolves on its own in time.
Possible contributing factors that have been explored include:
Ø Digestive system that isn't fully developed
Ø Imbalance of healthy bacteria in the digestive tract
Ø Food allergies or intolerances
Ø Overfeeding, underfeeding or infrequent burping
Ø Early form of childhood migraine
Ø Family stress or anxiety
Risk factors for colic are not well-understood. Research has not shown differences in risk when the following factors were considered:
Ø Sex of the child
Ø Preterm and full-term pregnancies
Ø Formula-fed and breast-fed babies
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