One of the really nice things that you can do for a baby with colic is to use some massage techniques that support and massage the abdomen, which is often really hard and uncomfortable in a baby with colic. Our Care and Development DVD includes a full demonstration of a baby massage to help alleviate colic that has been endorsed by a paediatric physiotherapist.
It is better to see a proper demonstration of these techniques or take your baby along to a baby massage class so that you become confident and know how to massage your baby safely.
Warm hands on abdomen
With your nice warm hands, just, as your baby’s lying down on its back, just putting your nice warm hand gently and firmly over the baby’s tummy, and they’ll find that really quite soothing. Another thing that you can do, which is similar to that, is to, with a nice warm wet flannel, roll it up into a thin roll and just press that gently over your baby’s tummy. And that warmth, again, will be quite reassuring and relaxing for a baby with a hard kind of sore colicky tummy. Another nice thing that you can do for your baby is to massage your baby’s abdomen in the direction that their gut flows, and this is just basically doing a simple clockwise movement. So you start from their right hip, move up and along and round and round, slowly and gently, always clockwise, always clockwise as you’re looking down on your baby. And, again, that will really help a baby that’s feeling bloated and painful, and help to move any kind of gas that’s trapped in their belly.
Alternate hands on abdomen
Take your hands and alternatively just gently stroke them down from underneath the ribs, down to like the top of their hips, first with your right hand, and then alternating with your left hand.
Gently hold your baby’s little ankles, and bring their knees right in to their abdomen. After holding them there for a few seconds you can start to rotate the baby’s knees, round in a clockwise manner, round over the abdomen, and that can really help to ease them, if their tummy’s hurting. You know, if they’ve got wind, you might get even hear it coming out in this position!
Lying over your thighs on their tummy
A different position that you can put your baby in, is by using gravity to help you ease your baby’s tummy and colic, and that is you just sit down on the floor with your legs straight out in front of you, and lay your baby over your thighs. And the pressure of your thighs against your baby’s abdomen may again ease their sore tummy. Gently with your hand on their back, just gently like roll them side to side with a gentle movement.
For more gentle techniques watch the baby massage class on our Care & Development DVD.