The happiness and joy of bringing your new-born home is a precious moment and for weeks together you will be wonderstruck at your babies doing little things like smiling in sleep, sucking milk, and even crying.

colic in babies

But, suddenly if your little angel starts crying, squalling with fists clenched, flapping legs and with an unpleasant red face then it is quite scary for all the family members. However, do not get into a panic mode since colic is quite a common problem among babies. And the good news is that it is a temporary episode and can be managed. Also Read: Colic In New Born: Causes, Symptoms And Treatment

Generally, about 40% of the new-born experience colic and it begins when the babies are 3 weeks old and ends when babies reach 3 -4 months.

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Colic is defined as a condition characterised by frequent episodes of crying which is not usually caused by a medical problem but mostly occurs in the evening for more than three hours regularly.


The exact cause of colic is not very clear, but a few paediatricians suggest that it may be due to neurological immaturity or babies finding it difficult to get accustomed to the environment outside the womb, making babies experience irritability for a shorter period. While some babies are a bit more sensitive to stimulus, intolerance to breast milk and it is also suggested that colicky babies may respond to gas, acid reflux or any allergy.

As the causative factor for colic is varied, there is no proper treatment plan. However, the paediatricians recommend ways to comfort the babies and reduce the episodes of crying by finding out the triggers of colic.

The doctors generally go by the “Rules of Three” to diagnose colic babies, which are:

  • If the baby cries for at least 3 hours a day
  • If colic happens for at least 3 days a week
  • If the colic continues for at least three successive weeks


Babies often show signs of colic usually at the same time every day. Also, you may observe that your child:

  • Cries without any reasons 
  • Crying in severe pain
  • Clenched fists, 
  • Stiff arms, 
  • Arched back
  • Curled legs
  • Facing turning bright red

Your child swallows a lot of air while they are crying, taking in gas making their stomach tight or swollen.


There’s no specific test for colic, your healthcare provider will ask about the symptoms and medical history of the infants. They will do a complete physical examination of the babies paying attention to

  • Energy level
  • Skin tone
  • Breathing
  • Body temperature
  • Weight

Furthermore, paediatricians may do a complete physical examination to rule out any other physical problems like oesophagal reflux, an infection or an allergy, which may be causing colic in babies. 

How Will I Know If My Baby Has Colic?

Colic can be diagnosed based on the pattern of symptoms. Keep a record of:

  • When the baby’s crying spells begin
  • When the baby sleeps
  • What do you feed the baby and how often? 
  • Baby’s bowel pattern

When Should I Get Medical Help?

Seek medical help if your baby stops gaining weight, shows intense changes in behaviour or has any one of the following symptoms:

  • Fever
  • Forceful vomiting
  • Diarrhoea
  • Blood in their poop

Natural Remedies For Quick Relief From Colic

  1. Warm Bath And Compress

A warm bath and compress works as a best natural remedy for colicky babies and offers respite from gas. Warm water has the tendency to relief pain, soak a towel in warm water, squeeze it and gently rub the baby tummy with it.

  1. Massage

Massaging the babies with essential oils like almond and coconut oils can calm the babies and also stimulate digestion. Take the oil on your palm and give a gentle massage in a clockwise direction. Also Read: Baby Massage: Why and How You Should Do It

  1. Place Them On Their Tummy

Place the baby on their tummy, across the stomach or lap, as a change in position may sometimes help to soothe colicky babies. Besides this, slightly rub baby’s back which helps in releasing the gas and at the same time may be comforting. Moreover, science says that tummy time assists in building stronger neck and shoulder muscles. Always do this while the babies are awake and under proper guidance.

  1. Burp The Baby

Remember to always burp the baby, soon after every feed, this aids in relieving the flatulence and averts the formation of air pockets or gastric bubble in the tummy. After each feed put your baby on your shoulder, supporting the neck and shoulders, mildly pat or rub the baby until you hear a burp.

  1. Anti-Gas Drops

Shreds of evidence have revealed that lowering the gas build up in the stomach can reduce the crying and uneasiness. Paediatricians recommend certain gas drops that function to break up the gas bubbles formation and can ease the symptoms of colic.

Seek immediate medical care if the baby:

  • Has frequent episodes of diarrhoea, especially with blood in it.
  • Doesn’t feed or gain weight
  • Has a high fever and vomiting
  • Feel very sick and fatigue
  • Less attentive or very sleepy than usual