Gas Pains

Gas Pains
Q:
Gas Pains

Our 1-month-old seems to be experiencing a lot of gas-type of discomfort. Any suggestions?

A:

Dr. Greene’s Answer:

The peak age for gas discomfort for children is 3 to 6 weeks. The extra gas usually comes from swallowing air, which may lead to crying, which may lead to swallowing more air. In some kids it may come from something in mom’s diet (if they are nursing) or from difficulty with the formula, if they take formula.

Several things may help. The more babies are carried throughout the day, the less gas discomfort they have, especially in the evening. The gentle jostling seems to help the gas find its way out. Tummy time also helps many babies. The gentle pressure on the abdomen moves gas along when the gas has built up. Laying the baby on his back and bicycling the legs can help, as can sitting in a little warm water. Try getting caffeine and caffeine-like products (including chocolate) out of your diet if you breastfeed; this helps for most babies. And for some babies, getting nuts or dairy out of your diet would help.

Simethicone drops are safe and gentle. The studies about their effectiveness are plus/minus, but many moms report that they work great for their babies. Scientific evidence supporting it’s use is unconvincing.

Reviewed by: Khanh-Van Le-Bucklin, Rebecca Hicks
Last reviewed: December 15, 2009
Dr. Alan Greene

Article written by

Dr. Greene is the founder of DrGreene.com (cited by the AMA as “the pioneer physician Web site”), a practicing pediatrician, father of four, & author of Raising Baby Green & Feeding Baby Green. He appears frequently in the media including such venues as the The New York Times, the TODAY Show, Good Morning America, & the Dr. Oz Show.

 

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