How To Calm Down a Baby With Colic


Disclaimer: The advice in this post is not from a physician nor is it intended to hep treat or diagnose any medical condition. If your baby is showing any type of symptoms that are concerning you we recommend calling your nurses hotline immediately or schedule an appointment with your pediatrician. For any emergency call 911.

Being a parent of a newborn is rough. Being a parent of a newborn with colic is exhausting, draining, discouraging, and overwhelming.

Both of my precious babies had colic. My first had the classic variety where every night at the witching hour she would scream and scream and scream for a few hours and then be fine. Our second child had reflux and colic and was just a grumpy, fussy baby 24/7. Both kinds are their own version of depleting.

Because I felt so helpless and clueless when we were going through all this I reached out to other parents for tips and tricks and what worked. Thankfully I wasn’t alone, and neither are you! The good news is there are things you can do to help. Here is our round-up of advice from real parents about what really, truly helps tame the “colic monster”!!

How To Calm Down a Baby With Colic

We’ll begin with the three big “S’s”

Swaddling — This is a must from the first, I didn’t know about this with my daughter but it helped so much with my son! I love both aden+anaias  and Swaddle Designs muslin swaddling blankets. They are well worth the cost, super soft, lightweight, and durable. At 5 my son still sleeps with them at night!

Swaying/Swinging–Whether it’s being held and rocked back and forth close to your body in a baby wrap, or if it’s being swung back and forth in a swing, there is something about motion that will become your best friend if you have a colicky baby. Some parents might be able to get away without needing a swing, bouncy chair, and baby wearing, but for you, these will become essentials. Pinpoint when your child’s most fussy time of the day is and try to head it off by making sure you’re wearing them or have them swaddled and in a swing or chair before it hits.

Babywearing can be intimidating with all the options available today. Luckily there is also a lot of help. Just check out Pinterest and YouTube for great tutorials and advice on the best carriers and how to use them!

Even if you don’t baby wear taking turns walking around holding your baby will work. Walking outside if at all possible especially seems to help! There’s just something about that fresh air that helps calm them (and you!) down.

For bouncy seats and swings, you can check out the scoop on Amazon, or just put out a call on your local mom swap page. We were given both our bouncy seat and swing for free as “hand me downs” and then passed them along once our kids were too big for them.

Bouncing on a Ball Another motion that is similar and helps is holding your baby while sitting on a yoga ball and gently bouncing on it. This will also help you work your core and tighten up those muscles again, so use cautiously in those first few weeks!

SSssshhing — Sound can also really help with an upset, colicky baby. Whether it’s actually saying “ssshhhh ssshhhh ssshhhh” as you sway with them, or running a vacuum, or play soft, soothing piano music, sounds can be amazing especially “white noises”. Put together a witching hour playlist, download a white noise app, or create a Piano Guys and David Nevue station on Pandora. For my daughter one of the only things that would work would be this one, specific, soft piano song that I would play over and over and over since it calmed her down (and, as a result, I still love that song!)

Another “S” that helps is this one:

Sleeping While Inclined For this one please check especially with your pediatrician for safety before using any of these Most colic/reflux prone babies have an incredibly difficult time sleeping flat (which means that you, also, will not be getting any sleep.) Both my daughter and son spent much of their first few months sleeping in their car seat since it was a secured, inclined place. Another option is to roll up a few towels and stick them underneath the crib mattresses until the one side where your babies head goes is slightly inclined.

Tummy Time, Massages, and “Pumps” Tummy time especially helps colicky babies, whether it’s “true” tummy time, or placing them on your knee, on their tummies, and rubbing their back. Try supervised tummy time and see if it helps your little one!

Amber of Busy Creating Memories recommends Tummy Massages and Tummy pumps (bending knees up to chest to help massage tummy and pump gas out) as great ways to help as well. Again, Pinterest and Youtube are amazing places to find out all about Infant Massage!

Natural Remedies There isn’t any medicine for babies, however, there are several all-natural options you can turn to. Again, please do lots of research before giving your child any remedy, natural or not.

Some options that moms recommend include Little Remedies advanced colic relief which Amber of Busy Creating Memories also recommends. Some moms had a little bit of luck with Gripe Water (I found it useful to dip my son’s pacifier in it to get him interested it in mid-scream, then he would continue sucking on it and calm down).

Other moms had great luck with using essential oils–specifically Lavender essential oil and  Peace and Calming.

Of course before you start any of the steps above we know you’ll make sure that your baby is not upset because of any discomfort, a happy tushi means a happy baby and our Tushi Wash and Tushi Stick are great all natural products as well!

Those are our best, tried-and-true Colic Mom recommended options! Did we miss any? Please let us know over on our Facebook Page and Don’t Forget to Pin This Post so you can reference it anytime you need to!

Author Nicole Elliott

Happy Wife, Mommy of 2, lover of books, raspberries, pretty pictures, & sweet babies.

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