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 cowís 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.