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How to Get Rid of Bellyaches in a Newborn

by Maria Magher

Newborn babies can get bellyaches for a number of reasons, including colic, constipation, food sensitivity and illness. However, your newborn can't tell you if he's got an upset stomach. Instead, you have to be alert to the potential signs, including fussiness, crying, gas, diarrhea and even vomiting. If your baby is showing signs of bellyache, you can try some common home remedies to relieve the pain. However, if signs of pain persist despite your best efforts, talk to your pediatrician to make sure there isn't a more serious problem.

Burp your baby. Gas is the cause of many bellyaches in newborns. Babies may get gas from eating too quickly, from a sensitivity to something in breast milk or formula, or from crying and taking in a lot of air. Burping your baby can help relieve gas pressure. You can also lay your baby on his back and gently press his knees into his chest to relieve gas pressure.

Offer your baby more breast milk or formula. Dehydration can cause constipation and a bellyache. Newborns can become dehydrated if they are not drinking enough breast milk or formula, especially during warmer months. Simply offering your baby more can ensure that he is properly hydrated.

Give your baby a small bit of prune juice or corn syrup. "Parents" magazine says that adding 2 to 3 teaspoons of prune juice or corn syrup to 4 ounces of formula can help to relieve constipation. However, it is important that you consult your pediatrician before giving your baby anything other than breast milk or formula to ensure that it is safe.

Use infant gas drops to relieve gas pressure. Follow the manufacturer's instructions and give the exact dose recommended for newborns, according to body weight.

Massage your baby. La Leche League International suggests massaging your baby's belly in a light, circular motion with the palm of your hand to relieve gas pressure and aid in digestion.

Talk to your doctor about your baby's symptoms. Other causes of bellyache -- such as gastrointestinal reflux, allergies, food sensitivities, bacterial or viral infection -- can pose serious health problems. Your pediatrician can give you advice about how to treat these issues, such as with medication, through a special diet while you are breastfeeding or by trying a different type of formula for your baby.

Items you will need
  • Prune juice
  • Corn syrup
  • Infant gas drops

Warning

  • Never give your baby medication without talking to your doctor first.

About the Author

Maria Magher has been working as a professional writer since 2001. She has worked as an ESL teacher, a freshman composition teacher and an education reporter, writing for regional newspapers and online publications. She has written about parenting for Pampers and other websites. She has a Master's degree in English and creative writing.

Photo Credits

  • BananaStock/BananaStock/Getty Images