Colic remedies bring soothing relief to children who suffer from its symptoms. For centuries, parents and caregivers of young children have used home remedies for colic symptoms as a safe and effective way of calming children during a colic attack or helping them to prevent future episodes. Understanding what colic is, what its possible causes are and learning about various colic remedies that other caregivers have successfully used can go a long way in helping to relieve colic symptoms in an infant or young child.
Intestinal pain and discomfort that causes intense crying and irritability in infants and toddlers is described as colic.
The exact cause of colic is unknown. Research is exploring the possibilities that it may be caused by an underdeveloped digestive tract or, perhaps, lactose intolerance. Colic can also be exacerbated by gas and hunger.
- Extreme irritability for no apparent reason
- Screaming and crying
- Clenched fists while crying
- Stiffening or curling of the limbs while crying
- Flushed skin
- Tense abdominal area
Towards the end of a colic episode, a child may pass gas or have a bowel movement. Children typically outgrow colic on their own. Although some children can experience it up to the age of three, most children outgrow colic during their first few months of life.
If blood is detected in the child’s bowel movements or if vomiting or fever accompany any of these symptoms, it is crucial that medical attention be sought immediately as these are not normal symptoms of colic, but indicate that a child is seriously ill.
If a baby appears to have colicky symptoms at the same time every day, it is important to consider what the child ate, drank or other factors that may trigger a colic episode.
If you are bottle feeding your baby it is important to check the nipple size to ensure that the hole is not too small and causing severe gas. If it is taking longer than five minutes to feed your baby you may want to consider trying a larger nipple size.
Natural cures and home remedies for colic can be used anytime symptoms are present. Some of the most popular and most effective colic remedies are:
- Warm water bottle
- Warm bath
- Hold the baby closely
- Speaking or singing to the baby in soothing tones
- Placing the baby in a swing
- Introduce droning sounds, such as a clothes dryer, vacuum cleaner, or room fan
- Take baby for a walk or a ride in the car
If the child is breastfed, it is advisable for the mother to closely examine her diet and eliminate foods, such as caffeine, dairy products, citrus fruits or spicy foods that may contribute to the child’s intestinal discomfort.
The following herbal remedies can be used as natural cures for colic:
Any of the above herbs are safe to administer to children as a tea. The tea should be allowed to cool so that it is a lukewarm temperature before feeding it to a child and very small portions, such as one or two teaspoons should be given at a time.
It may take trying a number of colic remedies before discovering which one works on a child. The most important thing to remember is that the child is in pain and in need of comfort. Giving the child loving attention while attempting to soothe her discomfort is at the top of the list for natural colic remedies.