How to Relieve Gas in Newborn Baby: 12 Tips!
Are you worried about your gassy baby? Is passing gas makes your baby irritable? There are different ways of how to relieve gas in newborn baby:
- Burping the baby.
- Controlling air input during feeding.
- Feeding baby before a meltdown.
- Changing the bottle or formula of a formula-fed baby.
- Checking mother’s diet for a breastfed baby.
- Training baby according to your milk flow.
- Trying massaging.
- Maintaining tummy time activities.
- Trying bicycling technique.
- Trying forearm hold.
- Using baby gripe water.
- Using infant gas drops.
In this blog article, we’ll discuss the causes of gas problems in babies, signs that show that a baby is gassy and the ways on how to relieve gas in newborn baby.
Human digestive system is a miracle in itself. Food passes through the gastrointestinal tract. The small intestines absorb all the food that is useful for the body. The unwanted part moves towards the large intestines. There, the leftover food particles breaks down further. This process releases carbon dioxide and hydrogen that creates bubbles. Burping releases some of the gas immediately.
However, some gas goes from the large intestine to the colon. Finally, it reaches the rectum from where it is released in the form of farts. This is an entire chain of actions. Sometimes the gas is not released properly. Instead it keeps on accumulating in the digestive tract. This creates bloating and indigestion.
What should I know about gas in my newborn baby?
A newborn baby is very fragile. He or she needs the utmost care of the mother/primary caregiver. If you are a new mother with a gassy baby, then you’ll be having questions related to the best gas relief for babies. Before answering such questions, I’ll tell you some simple points. These points will give you a clear idea about best gas relief for babies.
- Both bottle-fed and breastfed babies can have gas problems.
- Gas itself is not the problem. It’s the bubbles that form in the baby’s tummy and irritate him.
- Mostly the first three months of a baby’s life are when he experiences gas-related problems.
- Accumulation of bubbles during the day can disturb the baby at night. This is why newborn gas at night is a major concern for many mothers.
- There can be different causes in different babies for gas issues. Therefore, never stick to just one cause. Instead, explore among the options.
What can be the causes of gas in my newborn baby?
The digestive system of a newborn baby is always immature. It produces more gas as compared to a mature digestive system. Similarly, newborn babies tend to ingest more air while feeding. Therefore, the chances of gas increase also. However, this is not at all something dangerous.
All babies pass more gas. It’s just they follow less decorum as compared to adults. They may appear irritable when they are releasing gas. But this doesn’t mean that they are ill. Once the gas is released, they’ll be normal and active again. There are different causes of gas in a newborn baby:
- As the digestive system of babies is immature, it’ll take some time for it to adjust. Till then, it’ll keep on producing more gas.
- If your baby is habitual of crying excessively, his belly will be filled up with air constantly.
- Sometimes, babies suffer from constipation. This also leads to the accumulation of gas in the digestive system.
- In breastfeeding, if your baby is incorrectly latched he’ll ingest more air while feeding.
- Milk letdown can suddenly increase while the baby is still feeding. He starts feeding speedily. As a result, the baby also ingests more air.
- What a breastfeeding mother eats also affects the digestion of the newborn baby. If the mother eats something that baby cannot digest well, gas will be the result.
- Sometimes, the bottle or the formula that the baby is consuming creates more gas.
What are the signs that my baby is gassy?
Different babies show different signs or symptoms to show discomfort.
- If your baby cries nonstop for hours and show signs of extreme pain then this can be due to gas. The facial expressions of the baby show that he is in pain.
- When your baby burps excessively throughout the day this show that he is ingesting huge amounts of air while feeding or crying.
- A swollen/bloated abdomen is also a sign that shows too much gas is present inside the stomach.
- If your baby spits up excessively (even when not feeding), this shows that gas might be trapped in the stomach.
- Movements of the baby also show gas problems. For example, your baby moves his legs towards his stomach, arch his back or clutch his fists excessively while crying. This is a clear indication that he is having trouble in passing gas.
At times, the discomfort is not due to gas. There can be some other reason as well. Therefore, it is good to use some gas-relieving techniques. If gas is the problem, the baby will get calm. If not, then you should check for other issues. Do not keep on pushing the gas-related issues unnecessarily.
What are treatments for gas problems in newborn babies?
Many mothers think about how to get rid of baby gas fast. If you want to know how to relieve gas in newborn baby, you can try the following methods/treatments:
1. Does burping a baby help with gas?
Yes!! Burping a baby during and after a feed is the easiest way to relieve gas. Burping tends to release some gas on an immediate basis. This keeps the stomach comfortable. Burping is essential for both bottle-fed and breastfed babies. Always focus on burping the baby in the right way.
If your baby is bottle-fed, try to burp him midway during the feeding and then after the feed as well. On the other hand, burp a breastfed baby while alternating between the breasts. If the baby does not burp after feed, lay him down on his back for some time. Then try burping again. He’ll definitely burp and will feel alright.
2. Does gas problems occur when the baby swallows too much air?
Checking levels of swallowed air is a good 1 month baby gas problem solution. Newborn babies are likely to gulp air through two ways:
This can be avoided through proper positioning of the baby while feeding. If you are breast feeding your newborn, always ensure that the latch is correct and complete. An upright position (where head is higher than the stomach) is the best position for feeding the baby in both breastfeeding and bottle-feeding.
If your baby is bottle-fed, focus on following aspects to reduce gulping air:
- Always choose such nipples of feeders that do not trap air inside the feeder,
- Keep the nipple of the feeder always full of milk while feeding. In this way, the baby won’t swallow any unnecessary air in the disguise of feed.
- Never shake the feeder/bottle too much. If done, this creates many bubbles in the bottle. The baby gulps all that air while feeding.
- When feed is prepared, let it settle down. Then offer it to the baby. In this way, bubbles will settle down.
- Finally, always keep the head of the baby higher than the stomach while feeding.
3. How feeding baby before a meltdown helps in gas problems?
All babies cry. Crying is the only way of communication that babies know. However, the more a baby cries, the more air he’ll ingest. As a result, more gas will be produced in the stomach. Therefore, it is important to identify early hunger cues from a baby. Keep a check on the actions of the baby. You’ll easily understand when he is hungry.
Feeding at the right time also makes the baby feed at a normal pace. As a result, no gulping of air takes place. This is a good answer for how to relieve gas in newborn baby. This is also applicable to both breastfed and formula-fed babies.
4. Try changing the bottle or formula of a formula-fed baby!
The bottle and nipples of babies who are bottle-fed play a critical role in gas problems. Always select the nipples that promote slow flow of the milk. There are different types of nipples available in the market. You can also find the nipples that are age-appropriate and release drops per age of the baby. For example for 0-3 months old babies, there are 1 drop nipples and so on.
In the same way, sometimes the stomach of the baby does not accept the formula. There are specific formulas in the market that claim to decrease gassiness. It is good if you consult a pediatrician and change the formula of the baby. In most cases, this really helps a lot.
5. Can mother’s diet lead to gas problems in breastfed babies?
A mother’s diet plays a critical role in breastfeeding. It is possible that a mother’s diet can cause gassiness in newborn babies. It is suggested that mothers keep a food log at hand. Track your dietary intake and symptoms of gassiness by the baby, if any. If you suspect an issue, discuss it with your pediatrician. Certain dairy products, vegetables, caffeine, and other edibles are foods that cause gas in babies. This is because the baby’s immature stomach cannot digest them as their essence is present in the mother’s milk. Choosing your diet is a good answer for how to relieve gas in newborn baby who is breastfed.
6. Can strong milk let-down in breastfeeding cause gas problems in babies?
Many mothers experience a speedy flow of milk during the first few minutes of breastfeeding every time. Their newborns may also try to drink that milk speedily. As a result, they ingest more air than usual. You can hand express a little before starting to feed your baby. This is simply to use your hands to release some milk initially from the breasts. This brings a strong letdown in control. You can also choose the feeding positions that help in normal milk flow.
After a few initial weeks of breastfeeding, a mother’s body identifies with the baby’s feeding demand. This is the time when the issue of strong letdown ends on its own. The milk flow regulates and baby can feed easily.
7. Can massaging help my baby in releasing gas?
Massaging is an age old technique that has been approved by latest science as well. Newborn babies are not at all tactile. They cannot even freely move their limbs. Therefore, the milk takes time to be digested. Presence of gas makes things more irritable. Gently massaging the baby can help a lot in this regard.
You can try different types of massages. For example, “I Love You massage” is a very popular type of massage for relieving gas in babies. Simply lay down your baby on his back. Gently put your fingers on the tummy of the baby. Start mimicking as if you are writing the letters “I”, “L” and “U” on the tummy of your baby. When you do so, activity is being done in the abdomen. Resultantly, the gas in the stomach will be released with ease.
8. Can tummy time really solve gas problems among babies?
As told earlier, babies need help in learning movements. Before babies learn how to roll over, they should spend some tummy time daily. Tummy time is the best approach when it comes over how to relieve gas in newborn baby. Tummy time can be practiced at any time. However, if you select a time after meal, then always wait for at least 30 – 40 minutes after feed.
Newborn babies need constant supervision during their tummy times. Therefore your presence throughout the tummy time is necessary.
9. Is bicycling the answer on how to relieve gas in newborn baby?
Using the bicycling technique can help relieve the gas in newborn babies. Simply put your baby on his back. Grab both of his legs. Start moving his legs back and forth. This should be just like riding a bicycle. You can also take breaks in between and do this: touch the knees of the baby with each other and squeeze them towards the baby’s tummy for extra pressure.
This is a very effective technique and helps in immediate release of the gas. I have tried this technique with all my three babies. It does work!!!!
10. Can forearm hold relieve gas in newborn babies?
Hold your baby from under his belly using your forearm. Your hand should be at the diaper of the baby. The baby’s head should be near your elbow area. Keep a check that the nose or mouth of the baby is not blocked. This position is just like tummy time when it comes to applying pressure on the baby’s abdomen. Hence gas can be released easily.
11. Can baby gripe water help in gas problems among babies?
Gripe water has also proved to be a very effective remedy for relieving gas in newborn babies. Gripe water is a combination of water and certain essential herbs. It is a safe homeopathic approach. However, always consult your pediatrician before starting to use it.
12. Can infant gas drops answer how to relieve gas in newborn baby?
Sometimes the gas pain is because the baby is colic. Being gassy and being colic are strongly linked with each other. Therefore, trying some gas relief drops or colic drops can help the babies in overcoming gas pains. However, always remember to consult your pediatrician before starting anything new with your baby.
In a nutshell, gas problems are faced by almost every parent. The trick is to focus on some cues and use certain treatments wisely. This is just a small phase in the life of a newborn baby. Within a small period, the baby starts to roll over. He can also move his limbs (especially legs) a little bit. When this time comes, the release of gas becomes easier. Then there is little to no need for using treatments at all.
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