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What is it?

The term wind is used to describe.......

1)BURPING –gas brought up from the stomach OR
2)FLATULENCE –gas released from the rectum.

My baby is 'Windy' is usually because the baby is finding it hard to release the gas by burping or farting.

Trapped wind can make a baby;
  • Wriggle especially when lying flat
  • Grimacing and screwing up their face or painful facial expressions
  • Pulling up the legs and crying
  • The tongue can be sitting up on the roof of the mouth
  • The baby can have a blue tinge around the mouth area.
  • Often they scream very loudly with wind pain.
  • BUT babies also do all of the above when they are hungry and need some sensory stimulation. So before you diagnose wind maybe try feeding your baby or doing something with them like going outside for some fresh air.

The term colic or colicky baby is applied to babies who have prolonged bouts or crying or screaming. Often 3hrs of crying for 3 days for 3 weeks or longer. All babies cry sometimes and parents become quite skilled at interpreting what their babies' cries mean. Colicky babies continue crying even when parents have exhausted their menu of 'stop crying measures' and they often appear to be in considerable pain. 

There are many different theories about the cause of colic. Some experts deny that it even exists. The debate is of no assistance to parents, it is extraordinarily distressing and can take all the joy from the first months of parenting.

What is colic?

Most parents who have survived infant colic believe that their baby had regular bouts of stomach ache. It appears that many babies digestive system are not fully mature at birth and that the pain of colic is caused by spasmodic contractions of the intestines and/or by bubbles of gas or air which have become trapped in the intestines.

The typical colicky baby appears quite comfortable first thing in the morning but becomes less and less settled as the day progresses. Often by 5-6pm they are crying continually and this can go on for 3-6 hours until totally exhausted, they fall asleep. During this time the breast fed colicky baby will often appear to be hungry and will latch onto the breast with enthusiasm, only to pull away and cry desperately a few minutes later. They often have a large bloated abdomen. They are often light or restless sleepers and never seem to relax, either when breast feeding or sleeping.

Most breast fed colicky babies gain weight well which can make it difficult for parents to convince relatives, friends and health professionals that there is a problem.

Colic usually starts in the first weeks of a baby's life and continues for about three months. It seems that around this time most babies digestive systems mature and they can feed and digest comfortably. In some cases the colic appears a little later, especially if it is some seasonal fruit or vegetable that is causing the problem, and lasts longer than 3 months.

Colicky babies often have loose greenish stools with the 'curds' separated from the 'whey' (rather than the creamy textured yellow stool of the non-colicky baby). This type of stool indicates that the breast milk is not being properly digested.