Due to their underdeveloped digestive systems, gas and tummy issues are often inevitable in newborns and infants. Pediatricians often prescribe gripe water to parents seeking relief for their infants. How fast does gripe water work? Is it safe? Here is what you need to know about using gripe water on babies and newborns.
What is gripe water?
Let's recap what we have learned in the articles “How much Gripe Water can you leave a newborn and when is it too much”:
Gripe Water is a solution that includes herbs and sodium bicarbonate. Depending on the brand and the formula, Gripe Water can contain fennel, ginger, peppermint, lemon juice, etc. The FDA does not approve Gripe Water, but the American Academy of Pediatrics says it is a safe option to try with a reasonable dosage.
How fast does gripe water work?
Some babies become cranky after feedings as a result of eating too quickly or gulping air while eating. Giving gripe water 30 minutes after feeding is an excellent idea because it gives the little one's stomach time to empty.
Due to being overfed, the infant may spit up if given too soon after a feeding. If your infant has trouble finishing feedings owing to gas or fussiness, offer Gripe Water 30 minutes before feedings. You can figure out what works best for your kid by providing gripe water at different times.
In fact, according to some families, gripe water has a faster effect than the prescription. The product only took about 10 to 15 minutes to see the result.
Sodium bicarbonate and a blend of herbs including fennel, dill, ginger, chamomile, lemon, and peppermint are commonly found in gripe water, depending on the brand. The main ingredient that makes gripe water effective quickly is sodium bicarbonate (NaHCO3), usually known as baking soda.
Does gripe water always work to relieve gas?
Even if many parents swear by it, there is not much research to suggest that gripe water works to soothe upset stomachs.
Proponents claim that dill, fennel, and ginger, among other constituents in gripe water solutions, might help reduce gas and stomach discomfort. Some think gripe water may be useful for calming restless newborns simply because it tastes sweet.
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), gripe water is a safe alternative to try and is unlikely to have any side effects.
Although gripe water for colic may seem like the ideal remedy, it does have its downsides. For instance, one-month-old infants or younger should not use gripe water since their vulnerable bodies may not tolerate the variety of ingredients. Most babies who experience colic fall in this age range, and some would find gripe water essentially ineffective.
Tips for choosing and giving gripe water
If you must provide your infant gripe water, follow these guidelines to choose the suitable brand for your child.
What else can you do if gripe water does not work?
If you are unsure about using gripe water to treat your child's discomfort and calm those tears, there are a few more options.
Anti-gas drops can be a different option
Antigas drops may be more effective than gripe water for your baby. Consult your physician about using these drops containing the active component simethicone (which breaks up gas bubbles). Mylicon and Little Remedies are two of the most popular brands, but always get advice from your doctor first.
Have a medical check-up
A simple change from ordinary cow's milk formula to one that does not contain cow's milk or is anti-gas and specifically for sensitive tummies could be a rapid remedy for certain gassy, irritable newborns. Because only about 1% to 3% of babies and young children are allergic to cow's milk, it is best to consult your kid's pediatrician before switching formulas to see whether your child has a dairy allergy or sensitivity (and get a recommendation for a different one to try).
Try infant massage
A quiet, soothing rubdown can help soothe a fussy baby and ease gas pain. It is also a terrific way for caregivers to bond with their children.
Try tummy pressure
When applying pressure to the stomachs of gassy (and colicky babies, they feel better, simply lay your baby down on one knee with your baby tummy on the other or set up on your lap with your baby tummy, take your hand and gently rub or pat her back.
Wrap a cozy blanket around your little one. For an extra relaxing experience, begin rocking and dancing while hugging the baby in your arms.
Moving your baby's legs in a bicycle-wheel motion will sometimes alleviate the gas that is giving her so much distress.
Provide a pacifier
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) states that feeding an infant a pacifier is perfectly acceptable. Some kids need to suckle, and pacifiers can immediately calm them down. Parents can also use a pacifier as a sleep prop.
Look into a diet check
If breastfeeding your baby, keep an eye on what you are eating and drinking to see if it causes your infant any digestive issues. To check whether there is any difference, try removing common gas triggers like dairy or soy from your diet one at a time.
Gripe water may be the right solution because it might help parents to calm their babies. However, caregivers still need to know the cause of your baby's discomfort or pain, so the newborn must be comforted and soothed.
If you are a first-time parent, you may find this challenging because nothing seems to work. But once you get the hang of it, everything will slow down, and you know how to comfort your infant.