If your baby always cries, he may have intestinal colic. Intestinal colic is not a disease, but a term used to describe the symptom that the baby is healthy but always crying uncontrollably.
If your baby is less than five months old, cries for more than three hours a day for more than three days a week, and lasts for at least three weeks, and the baby’s body is healthy, then he’s probably suffering from intestinal colic. Babies with intestinal colic may also appear uncomfortable: they may alternately kick their legs, or lift their legs, and fart and exhaust. Although babies with intestinal colic start to cry and feel uncomfortable at any time, they usually have the worst attacks between 6 p.m. and midnight.
About 20% of babies will develop intestinal colic, usually starting when they are 2 to 4 weeks old. Whether the baby is a first child or not, a boy or a girl, breast-fed or formula-fed, intestinal colic is common. Fortunately, the baby’s intestinal colic won’t last forever. Sixty percent of babies get better in about three months, and 90 percent get better in four months.
Causes of Intestinal Colic in Babies
Intestinal colic is one of the most difficult phenomena to explain in a baby’s life. No one knows why some babies suffer from more severe intestinal colic than others, but there are many theories about intestinal colic. One reason may be that some babies’ digestive systems are less mature or more sensitive.
There are few digestive enzymes or digestive juices in the digestive tract of newborns, especially amylase. Therefore, when the protein or sugar in breast milk or formula is too high, the baby may suffer from intestinal colic due to insufficient digestive juice. Besides, the baby will swallow too much air in the process of crying, which can also cause flatulence. Some experts believe that babies’ long bursts of crying are a form of the vent, because their developing nervous system is not able to deal with the various stimuli in the surrounding environment. At night, some babies need release by crying because they can’t accept the visual images, sounds and feelings of their surroundings. This can cause the baby to swallow a lot of air, leading to colic.