Why won’t she stop crying?!
Sophia had colic and it was hard. If you’ve read my breastfeeding journey post you’ll know that we switched Sophia exclusively to formula at about 2 weeks old. In the hospital we had been given SMA and so we just stuck with that. Quite quickly we noticed Sophia being quite fussy after her afternoon bottles and within about an hour of having it she would just scream. She’d pull her knees up and cry and cry. We had no idea what was going on but it seemed to me like she was in pain.
I spoke to the midwife as we hadn’t been discharged yet and she told me that she was probably ‘just a colicky baby’ and that was it. She didn’t even tell me what Colic was or what it meant, I’d never heard of it before and was rather worried that she was ill! She gave me no support or suggestions on what to do, at all. I asked whether it was perhaps the milk Sophia was on and she told me it could be harmful to swap milks.
I know they say not to Google buuuut…
What else could I do? I had no idea what was going on, I just knew my baby was not happy and that, as a brand new mum with mental health struggles, I had a very short tether and needed to do something.
Google told me what colic was and also gave me some things to try – baby massage being one of them! I used Kokoso coconut oil on Sophia from birth and so would use some of that after a warm bath and do a long massage with her to try and ease the discomfort and soothe her a bit.
I also spent so much time trawling through websites and forums and couldn’t find anything definitive about changing milks being harmful so I decided to do it anyway. We researched and decided to try out the Comfort SMA milk which helped a little initially but not for long.
There must be more I can do!
I eventually went into our local chemist and had a chat with the pharmacist who suggested colic drops that you just add to the baby’s bottle. We tried Infacol and Dentinox (separately of course) and that seemed to make such a difference to her. We also changed her milk again to Aptamil and finally it seemed like we’d cracked it.
At 6 weeks Sophia seemed to chill out completely, she started drinking whole bottles instead of an ounce here and an ounce there. Her colic symptoms eased off and she was like a new child. She also started sleeping through other than being woken for a dream feed! Bliss!
What is colic?
What really surprised me throughout my experience was how common colic is and yet how little I knew of it before hand. I didn’t know to expect it or that it was normal.
You may or may not be familiar with colic – if you are, you have my sympathy! To answer the question ‘what is colic?’; the NHS say:
Colic is the name for excessive, frequent crying in a baby who appears to be otherwise healthy. It’s a common problem that affects up to one in five babies.
The signs and symptoms that suggest colic are as follows:
– intense crying bouts,
– crying in the late afternoon or evening that lasts several hours,
– your baby’s face being red and flushed when they cry,
– your baby clenching their fists, drawing their knees up to their tummy, or arching their back while crying.
Will it ever end?
Dealing with a colicky baby can be exhausting and frustrating. It can make you feel helpless as often very little helps to soothe the crying baby. But try to remember, it doesn’t last forever!
Colic tends to begin when a baby is a few weeks old. It normally stops by four months of age, or by six months at the latest.
You’re not doing anything wrong and though it may not seem like it, baby is ok!
We’re all in this together
I spoke to a few other Mums about colic and their experiences.
It was honestly a horrendous time, half 5 every night without fail she just screamed for about 4 hours straight, I remember the first time I rang my mum crying and she had to come round and she held her tummy to tummy. Colief and the change of bottle eventually helped after what felt like eternity. Honestly I wouldn’t wish colic on anyone!
Ashlea – @KeepingUpWithTheKays_
I thought something was seriously wrong! Every evening was non stop crying until bedtime! We used Infacol and lots of leg cycling but it went naturally by 3 months.
Finley had terrible Colic up until about 4-5 months. He was constantly screaming and pulling his legs into his belly. We tried Infacol, Colief and Gripe Water (this worked the best for us). Finley literally wouldn’t even feed with Dan so I was doing it all, they thought he had a milk intolerance so swapped us to a prescription milk called Nutremagen it didn’t work though, he only started getting better when we started weaning him.
Colic Awareness Month
There’s a common theme I’ve noticed from talking to other Mums; I’m not the only one that had no idea what Colic was and was totally panicked when it set in. This is exactly the reason Infacol is working along with Cry-sis to raise awareness of colic in newborn babies.
Infacol are a well known brand to Mums who have scoured the supermarket for anything that may help their inconsolable new baby. Cry-sis are a charity that have been created for the sole purpose of supporting mums through those seemingly endless moments of constant crying. I wasn’t familiar with Cry-sis but I’m actually so impressed with their work I’m going to contact them to volunteer! Definitely have a look at what they do.
Together, they are working to spread the knowledge of Colic and so this September is Colic Awareness Month! Share your stories, talk about those hard, dark times, warn new mums that it can happen but it’s normal and it does end. The online parenting community is amazing! I’ve seen people share their stories of mental health, chronic illness, broken families – we’re talking about things that we’ve never discussed before. We’re smashing the stigma and the judgements. Let’s do the same here.
To celebrate this amazing initiative I’m running a giveaway! Check the post on my Instagram to enter! Here is what you can win: