The EclecticPhysician

The Eclectic Physician
Natural Health Care
by Beth Burch N.D.


Colic is a form of "indigestion" or excess intestinal gas in infants and young children. It is characterized by long periods of crying, irritability, burping and passing of gas, abdominal distention with rumbling in the abdomen. An infant may clinch his hands and kick his feet. Usually there is some relief with a bowel movement or passing gas. In young infants it tends to occur regularly every day, most often in the evening. The crying can be very frustrating to parents, but it is helpful to know that most colic subsides by four months of age.

Colic can be partly due to allergy, most commonly to cows milk, but many other foods can cause distress as well. If you breastfeed your baby, avoid dairy products yourself, along with gas producing foods like beans, onions, cabbage family vegetables and chocolate. Caffeinated beverages should also be avoided. Bottlefed babies can be tried on a soy formula. Feed the baby in an upright position and in a quiet and calm location. Avoid overfeeding and burp the baby frequently during feedings.
Movement is very helpful for colic. Use a front carrier to provide movement and contact with your baby. Studies have shown that 3-4 hours of carrying can reduce crying by 50%. Keeping the feet warm in booties can help in up to 75%.

Homeopathic colic tablets are very helpful. These tablets are a combination of several homeopathic remedies in a quick dissolving small tablet. They are available at health food stores and can be given every 30 minutes until the discomfort subsides.

Herb of choice-
Chamomile- a gentle sedative that helps to calm irritability and relax intestinal spasms
Dosage- every 3-4 hours
Liquid extract- 1 drop per 4 pounds of body weight
Tea- 1/2 teaspoon per 5 pounds of body weight

Other herbs- Fennel, Peppermint, Catnip

* The information presented in this web site is intended to inform and educate. It is not intended replace a qualified medical practitioner to diagnose or treat medical conditions.

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