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Colic Babies—Mysteries that can be Treated

Aug 21, 2015

Does your baby have colic? If so, your baby is probably between 6 weeks and 16 weeks of age and you have probably been to the doctor several times to determine what is happening with your baby.

It is hard to tell for sure if your child has colic since most babies cry a lot but colic is usually manifested as crying in the early morning and evening.Most doctors say there is nothing they can do and they do not know the exact cause of the colic.

Kids in the House expert, Dr. Dan Thomas, has some suggestions that might actually ease your baby’s cries. He recommends “giving a liquid antacid, about half a teaspoon, three quarters, three or four times a day.” He recommends getting the pediatrician’s approval in advance, though.

Treatment for Colic

This is supposed to work because it soothes the stomach and allows the baby to poop a lot easier. This treatment is usually only necessary for around three to four weeks. What’s good about this remedy is that it is easily accessible and achievable.

Dr. Thomas recommends a second remedy: probiotics. For those of you wondering what a probiotic is, it is live bacteria and yeasts that are good for one’s health, especially the digestive system. He admits that there are only a couple of studies that show the effectiveness of this treatment, but he points out that if your baby is really suffering, it is worth a shot.

Dr. Thomas also encourages parents to make sure they keep up on the normal things like not over feeding the child, burping the child before, during and after meals, keeping formulae consistent and continuing to breastfeed the child.

Many doctors recommend taking colicky babies off breastfeeding and switching them to a high powered special protein formula that is hypo allergenic. While this might work for some, Dr. Thomas strongly advises that parents not do this and that there will not be results from that treatment.

Dr. Thomas organized a study in which he was evaluating whether breastfeeding or formula feeding led to colic and there were no conclusive results. He said that of the participants who had colic, there were pretty much equal numbers that were either breast fed or formula fed. He comments that this study proved that there is no gastrointestinal cause for colic.

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Dan Thomas, MD
Pediatrician, Gastroenterology & Nutrition, Children's Hospital Los Angeles

About Dan Thomas, MD

Dr. Dan Thomas is the Head of the Division of Gastroenterology and Nutrition, and Medical Director of Liver and Small Bowel Transplantation at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles. Dr. Thomas presently serves on the Editorial Review Board of Pediatrics in Review and is on the Committee on Nutrition of the American Academy of Pediatrics. His primary clinical and academic interests include the care and study of children with congenital or acquired intestinal, pancreatic and hepatobiliary disorders.