When your baby is around three weeks old or in my case it started as soon as we got home from the hospital, some things you may notice are sudden bouts of crying for absolutely no reason and nothing seems to make it stop; I tried all sorts of things to help this little guy feel better, you name it I tried it. In the midst of it all it was quite stressful, and being a mama the second time around I thought I had a good idea of how to care for a baby, I was so wrong, this little guy has taught me so much about patience, learning how to go with the flow and that I can't control everything, all I can do is try my best. Through many pediatrician visits my doctor finally confirmed what I already knew (you know that mama intuition) and I'm so glad that I kept pressing the whole colic thing with my doctor. Through different things the doctor reccomended, which was a lot of trial and error to see what would work for my little guy, it finally worked and helped my little feel better. Oh and don't let that sleeping baby picture fool you, for some reason he slept the best when we went on our daily walks.
One thing to remember is that colic is not a disease and won’t cause any long-term harm to your little one, but it sure is baffling. Colic is incredibly common – occurring in one in five infants – so if you notice what is called the “rule of three”, then you most likely are dealing with a colicky baby.
The Rule of Three:
Crying starts around three weeks old
Lasts more than three hours
Occurs at least three days a week
Persists for at least three weeks in a row
In addition to this general rule of thumb, other symptoms include…
Loud wails that are piercing and continuous
May go on and off for several hours until they fall asleep
The crying occurs around the same time every day
Your baby seems almost frantic
Closing the eyes, opening the eyes wide, furrowing brows, and holding their breath briefly
Through my own research and what my pediatrician explained is that there is no specific cause as to why colic occurs, in my doctor's explanation there has been a lot of research, but nothing conclusive it's a bit of a mystery.
Here are some great things that may help with a colicky baby:
Apply pressure to baby’s tummy (this one really worked well for me)
Try gripe water (didn't work for me, but it may work for you)
Swaddle your little one
Make white noise (this one works and we still use it now)
Offer a pacifier
Hold them as much as possible
Play soothing music
Rock or dance with them in your arms
Massages (now this one was the winner of them all) <-- I made my own mix of coconut oil and lavender oil to massage my little guy
Also using the baby carrier helped my little guy feel closer to me, which really helped with making the bouts of crying less and less
The last thing I would mention is that don't take baby's colicky period on your own, if you need help ask/scream for help and if it gets too much during the crying period, honestly put baby down somewhere safe like in their crib and walk away to give yourself some time to get through it. A tired mama and let's be honest somewhat frustrated and at your wits end with feeling like a failure because you can't console your baby. But here's the truth no one can console baby in their bouts of crying and in order to help your baby you need to feel at ease not frustrated and tense in trying to help baby. It’s important to keep yourself calm so you can help your little one become calm. Don’t think that just because you can’t soothe him that you are a bad parent – this happens to everyone. It’s the mystery of colic.