How to Soothe a Colicky Baby

Posted on 07 March 2012

After spending countless hours picking out the perfect name, planning the baby shower and attending numerous doctors appointments, the special day has finally arrived and your baby is finally here.

While this is typically a joyous time - with the excitement surrounding the new baby, the cool baby gifts yet to be opened and the thrill of finally becoming parents - in some cases, a baby may cry and scream, maybe even more so than other babies.

If this is the case, you could have a colicky baby, which is defined by researchers as ''a healthy, well-fed infant who cries for more than three hours per day, for more than three days per week, for more than three weeks.''

According to parenting websites, like, infants normally cry for two to three hours over a 24-hour period. But, when a baby has colic, the crying usually turns to screaming and the newborn may become flushed, his feet cold and hands clenched.

For parents, who may be frustrated beyond belief, there are some tips to help soothe your colicky baby, according to The Kansas City Star.

If in the past you've noticed your baby likes the sound of your voice best, try talking, cooing or singing in a soft and soothing tone. Many babies respond well to rhythmic noises like "shhhhhhh, shhhhhhh, shhhhhhh."

If you can tell your baby responds more to visual stimulation, be aware that flashing lights, from toys, the TV or electronics can be visually overpowering for your newborn. Try calming your baby in a minimal environment, one with plain walls and few toys.

Many parents think putting their child in a stroller will calm down their screaming baby. However, some babies can become overwhelmed when they are quickly transitioned to this environment. If this method fails at first, try hanging and securing a plain baby blanket over the stroller. Just make sure there is plenty of ventilation coming in through the sides. 

So, while having a colicky baby can be frustrating, keep in mind there are solutions to calm your baby. If you've tried these methods, and feel your newborn's colic hasn't improved, make sure to see a doctor to discuss a new game plan for making your baby, and you, more comfortable.

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