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Colic

Colic: Age-by-Age Guide

First weeks: Colic may affect as many as a third of all babies and tends to starts when a baby is three weeks old.

Two months: The worst of the crying -- the longest, the loudest -- occurs at this point.

Three months: Most cases of colic will have subsided significantly by three months.

Colic: Parents' Experience

“My baby's colicky days were horrible and I thought it would never end! It started from about the first or second week he was born and it stopped finally right when he hit the 3 month mark. He would start crying around the early evening hours until sometimes 1 or 2 am. We tried everything but what I found to really work for me was gripe water, recommended by a pediatrician. Sometimes I would also put him in the stroller and go for a walk --  he would be calm and fast asleep after that.

Colic: Complementary/Alternative Treatments

Natural remedies can sometimes ease colic, but as with traditional medications, these should only be tried after an in-depth discussion with your baby’s doctor. Allergies are possible with any herb or natural product, so if you, your baby, or someone else in the family has a history of them or of eczema, talk with your physician before using. If your child develops a rash or any other side effect, stop using the product immediately.

Gripe water

Colic: Medication

Antacids

For cases of GERD, the pediatrician may prescribe an antacid like Zantac or Prilosec to block the production of acids in the stomach. Certain antacids like Maalox or Mylanta can be harmful, however, if used for a long time because they contain aluminum that may affect bone mineralization.   Anti-diarrheals such as Imodium can be dangerous because of increased exposure to bacterial toxins. Never administer anything unless under the direct supervision of a doctor.

Surgery

Colic: Treatment

Most pediatricians will approach treatment the same way: attempt to diagnose underlying conditions that could be exacerbating the wailing. Non-medical treatment for some of the most common culprits includes:

GER or GERD

Colic: Diagnosis

Colic is one of the most common infant conditions (according to some experts, up to one-third of all babies suffer from it), yet is perhaps the one that doctors know least about. If you find that your baby’s crying is starting to follow the “rule of threes” or he just seems to cry excessively, discuss it with your doctor. He may be able to pinpoint an underlying factor that he can treat, which may make a difference in the amount of crying you have to endure.

Colic: Causes

Doctors are not sure what causes colic, though some speculate it could be the result of a baby's sensitive temperament or immature nervous and digestive systems. These things may make a baby cry easily and have trouble stopping. (Luckily, as babies grow and develop, they are better able to control their crying). However, there are some underlying conditions that can make the crying worse, including:

Colic: Symptoms

Babies with colic cry, but so do all babies. Your little guy’s in tears because he literally has no other way to tell you what he needs. Newborns can't really control their crying -- and in the first few weeks of life, it’s sometimes a reflexive behavior. How can parents -- especially new parents -- judge if the crying is actually colic?

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