Childcare


Colic in babies is a problem that many mothers face. As a mother how do you identify colic?

If you google , you find that colic is defined as – severe pain in the abdomen caused by wind or obstruction in the intestines and suffered especially by babies.

As a mother you would be very concerned to find that th

  • Baby cries continuously
  • Baby seems to cry for no reason, and the crying increases during evening and night.
  • If you touch the stomach of the baby, it feels very hard when the baby cries.

As a mother you want to help relieve pain from the baby and see the baby sleep peacefully.
There are a few home remedies that help relieve baby from pain in the stomach which are traditionally used in India, and that I have used for my kids. Yes, the emphasis in the method is on tradition. It is very important to move more towards natural, less harmful and more holistic approach towards bringing up our children for their long lasting fitness , good health and longevity. As a first step I am starting with a most prevalent and most needed relief for any baby and the mother

Let us dive into remedies for colic now..

  1. Castor oil.
  2. Betal leaf stomach press
  3. Jajikaya/Nutmeg
  4. Vasa/Vasambu/Sweet Flag
  5. Burping
  6. Hot baby bath
  7. Mother’s diet
  8. Baby passing motion
  9. Ayurvedic and Homeopathy based medicines/Alternate Healing

 

 

 

Castor Oil
Make the baby lie down on the back.
Apply a drop of castor oil on the belly button of the baby and then gently massage the stomach area and the back of the baby.
Many times just putting a drop of castor oil will immediately or instantaneously relieve the baby from the colic pain, and the baby will be happy with the massage.
Betal Leaf Stomach Press
If the castor oil massage is not giving relief to the baby. Take a betal leaf (paan leaf) and slightly warm it on a lamp/candle flame or that of a gas stove and gently press the warm leaf on the baby’s tummy and lower back. Apply this warm compress a few times very gently, for less than five minutes. This also gives very good relief to the incessantly crying baby. Most of the times after this exercise the baby has a loud burp and falls asleep instantly. In some parts of India this method is very widely used as a home remedy.
Jajikaya/Nutmeg
Nutmeg is a very popular ‘Baby medicine’. This is traditionally given to the baby daily or at-least once or twice a week to ensure good digestion and sleep for the baby. This is a very popular remedy for colic. All that you need to do is to take a clean stone and add a few drops of water on it and grind the nutmeg on the stone.
For new-borns until they are 6 months of age normally a few drops of the mother’s milk is used for grinding the nutmeg on the stone.
The quantity of nutmeg to be given to the child is 1 line (about 1 inch line on the grinding stone) for each month of the baby’s age. If the baby is in the first month (not yet complete) 1 line of ground nutmeg is given to the infant. If the child is in the 10th month, the 10 ground lines of nutmeg can be given to the baby.
This is normally given to the child soon after bath, before the feed. Ground nutmeg helps the baby to have a sound sleep.
For a normal child without colic also, this is given about once a week or once a fortnight. However if the baby is colicky ground nutmeg is given daily in the morning or even twice a day, in the morning and at night.

Vasa/Vasambu/Sweet Flag
Vasa/Sweet Flag needs to be processed before use. There are 2 methods of processing the Vasa before use.
1. The first method is to show the Vasa to the flame of a gas stone, or that of a oil lamp so that it is burnt well and is black in color.
2. The second method is to put this piece of Vasa in milk and let it stay in it until the milk is fully boiled.
There are 2 methods of using Vasa/Sweetflag.
First method is to grind the vasa on the burnt side(in case it is burnt) and apply it on the tummy of the baby. If the infant is crying due to stomach ache, there is very good relief, soon after this application.
The second method is very similar to that of using Jajikaya/Nutmeg. We need to grind the blackened side of the Vasa for relief from colic. It is said that if the unburnt/unprocessed side is used, then it will lead to constipation.
. This is traditionally given to the baby daily or at-least once or twice a week to ensure good digestion and sleep for the baby. This is also a very popular remedy for colic. For internal consumption what needs to be done do is to take a clean stone and add a few drops of water on it and grind the Vasa on the stone.
For new-borns until they are 6 months of age normally a few drops of the mother’s milk is used for grinding the Vasa on the stone.
The quantity of Vasa to be given to the child is 1 line (about 1 inch line) for each month of the baby’s age. If the baby is in the first month (not yet complete) 1 line of ground Vasa is given to the infant. If the child is in the 10th month, the 10 ground lines of Vasa can be given to the baby.
This is normally given to the child soon after bath, before the feed. Ground nutmeg helps the baby to have a sound sleep.
For a normal child without colic also, this is given about once a week or once a fortnight. However if the baby is colicky ground Vasa is given daily in the morning or even twice a day, in the morning and at night.
Burping the baby
There are 3 methods of burping the baby. I have seen that the baby burps easily in one of these methods. Or you can try burping the baby in this order
• Burp the baby
• Make the baby lie down on it’s stomach
• Rocking the baby
• Exercising the baby.

Upright Burping of the Baby
It is normally suggested to the parents to burp the baby soon after a feed. Soon after a feed you need to hold the baby upright against your chest or shoulders and gently massage the baby’s back. Normally in a few minutes the baby burps. Ensure that you put the baby to bed only after burping, in order to avoid the incessant colic crying.
Make the baby lie down on the stomach
If the baby is constantly crying, place the baby on your lap – tummy down and give a gentle massage on the back. This will ensure that the baby burps and any gas is released quickly. Many times I have noticed that soon after a couple of burps the baby just sleeps instantly and also deeply after the incessant crying.
Rocking the baby
If burping the baby does not work, make the baby lie on your lap as if sitting on a rocking chair. For new-born’s please ensure that the baby’s neck and back are fully supported by your lap and hands. Then gently rock the baby as you sing a lovely rocking lullaby. As you rock the baby, please ensure that you gently and slightly bend the baby forward and backwards. This motion quickly releases the gas in the baby’s tubby.
Exercising the baby
The other method of getting the baby to burp is to make the baby lie on it’s back and fold it’s legs so that they touch the chest. Please do the exercise very gently and also playfully to ensure full co-operation from the baby. This exercising also helps relieve the baby from incessant crying and colic.
Hot Water Bath
If your baby is colicky, make sure to give a nice hot water bath to the baby. It is very important to bathe the baby properly to ensure nice and wonderful growth of the baby in every manner. In India, bath is said to be one of the 3 essentials for the baby’s growth which I will be covering in the video – 3 essentials for the New-born’s Wonderful and Smooth Growth.
For a baby with colic, make sure that you pour a lot of water on the baby’s tummy and on the baby’s back. Another method of bathing a baby with colic is to splash nice hot water on the baby’s tummy and on the baby’s lower back. This will ensure that any gas is released and the baby sleeps peacefully. Details of how to give bath to the baby will be covered in my video – Bathing the infant.

Take care of the mother’s diet
It is very very very important for a new mother to take care of her diet. Whatever the mother eats is said to directly affect the baby’s growth in every manner. Including the following items in a mother’s diet is said to ensure the baby is colic free.
1. Include a lot of garlic in the diet
2. Hing/Asofoetida
3. Reduce protein in the diet, traditionally in India, almost zero protein in given to new mothers.
4. Eat easily digestable food.
5. Eat foods prepared as per the traditional post-partum recipes.
6. Eat the first morshel of food mixed with a pintch of an ayurvedic medicine called Ashtachurnam and a good quantity of ghee. This will ensure good digestion and relieves the baby of colic as well.

Has the baby passed motion
New born babies do not pass motion daily at times. If they have not passed motion for a couple of days, then they tend to cry incessantly until they are relieved. A colicky baby will stop incessant crying after passing motion. There are a few methods to help the baby pass motion if the infant is constipated. I will be covering this in my next video – I am waiting for my baby to pass motion.
Ayurvedic and Homeopathic Medicines
I have seen that there are many ayurvedic and homeopathic medicines that help the baby get relieved from constipation.
One of the most popular things which is used to relieve the baby from constipation is Omam water or Gripe water. I have heard it to be very effective, but not in the case of my children. However there was another ayurvedic syrup that has always worked instantly when my children had severe colic. It’s name is bonnisan. All that is required is to give about 10 drops of this medicine to the colicky baby till the age of 4 months, and about a quarter teaspoon till 6 months and half a spoon till the age of 1 year.
There is also a Homeopathic medicine called Bio-Combination 3 for Colic in babies. The procedure is to nicely mix a pill of Bio-Combination 3 in about 100 ml of boiled and cooled water. After the pill is fully dissolved, give a spoon of water for the baby to sip. This medicine also helps in instantly relieve the baby from colic.

If none of these methods help the colicky baby, then I have found that a good homeopath can help giving good relief for a colicky baby.