Recently I attended a Breast Feeding Workshop (more about that in another post). A Paediatrician that I work with attended for a question and answer session that I found very helpful so I thought I would pass some of the questions and answers on to you.
Do you believe that colic exists?
“Yes definitely colic exists but I think it is a symptom rather than a condition.”
She went on to say that we need to look at the big picture everything that is going on before we decide on treatment. I was pleased to hear this as many of the mums I teach baby massage to have been told that colic doesn’t exist it is just poor parenting techniques. Not only is this distressing for parents who have been doing everything they can to settle a crying baby, often who has been crying for hours at a time but it is just not true.
What is the difference between Positing, Colic and Reflux?
“Positing (spitting up)
It is normal for some babies.
Can be dealt with the washing machine.
Does not need to be treated. Often lasts from 6 -12 weeks sometimes longer.”
Is the drawing up of legs. Painful passing of wind.
Crying at the same time each day often late afternoon.
Can have a distended firm abdomen.
Camomile drops can reduce the contraction of the smooth muscle of the intestines. Symptoms can last up to 3 months.”
Immaturity of the gut (often hereditary). There are 22 feet of gut after the stomach for the wind to get through.
Digestive enzymes start to be produced when we smell food. Babies smell milk. Some babies produce too much (enzymes). The milk usually neutralizes it but not in babies with reflux.
It causes pain and breast fed babies often come on off on off the breast – called the woodpecker effect. Bottle fed babies start and stop sucking as well.
Then they sleep 20-40 mins, wake up, arch back and need to be held upright.
A Sling that keeps baby upright can be helpful.
Elevate the head of the bed.
Try feeding more often every 3 hours so the amount of food needing to be digested is smaller.
May need to look at thickening milk or at formulas
For relief of symptoms (when arching) Mylanta can help
For prevention Zantac which decreases the production of enzymes. It will take a while to work. Sometimes up to 3 weeks”
Compounding Pharmacies can be helpful as they can put medication in a solution.
Gastro Oesophageal Reflux
Includes vomiting as well as heartburn and previously mentioned symptoms”
I hope you have found this information helpful. Always bare in mind that if your child is showing these symptoms or you are worried for any reason you should always check with your GP or Paediatrician.
Learning baby massage techniques are very helpful too as they
Help with the digestion process
Help to release trapped wind
Relax the baby and mum.
Release hormones such as endorphins which help with relieving pain.
Reduces anxiety. Studies show Cortisol levels are lowered after baby massage.
Give me a call 0411143582 or E:email@example.com
I enjoyed meeting the mums and babies at the Northern Beaches nurture group of Miracle Babies this morning 🙂
Teaching them baby massage techniques was my pleasure!
I’m looking forward to next time 🙂
Can you imagine having a settled, content and thriving baby?
“I hadn’t realized how many benefits there were aside from bonding and relaxation and as he has digestion issues this is so useful for us…”
Lauren and baby Jacob
2.Would you like to learn to communicate with your baby through touch and develop a special bond?
“It has helped us bond so much and is really good for those times when he wouldn’t settle due to tummy pains. I’m just about to have my second baby and can’t wait to do baby massage with him too!” Amanda
3.What do you do when your baby is crying and so uncomfortable and you have tried everything you can think of?
My first child had a traumatic birth. He was very unsettled in his early weeks, constantly screaming and regularly bringing up his milk. He was diagnosed by my GP as having reflux – days were difficult, nights were way worse. I knew nothing about baby massage but decided to give it a try as I was nearing my wits end.
I had a private class with Marilyn and I noticed an almost immediate change in his behaviour. As I performed basic techniques he squirmed less and his breathing became less frantic and laboured. Following his massage he became more happy, relaxed and calm. The tummy strokes helped him bring up his wind and eased tummy pains. Not only did calm him but it also calmed me and is something we both look still look forward to.
My second son started to show the signs of silent reflux when he was a few weeks old. I had already begun massaging him regularly and stepped up the massages when I noticed these symptoms. He really responds to his massage and is a calm and happy baby. I think because I started massage from day one and knew what to do with regards his reflux he never got to the same level of stress as my first baby. Being confident and calm, knowing that my techniques would help definitely rubbed off on him. My local doctor even asked me what I was doing as it had such a positive effect on him.
Baby massage has been such an invaluable tool in becoming a mother. It has not only helped me bond with my boys but helped their development and improve their symptoms. I now recommend it to any new mother I meet especially to mothers of difficult or sick babies.
4.What if your child has been diagnosed with special needs?
“I found baby massage was a special time for us. It was something we both enjoyed especially as my daughter had to have so many treatments she didn’t like. I felt like I was contributing to her development in a big way. She seemed so aware during massage and we connected with eye contact and touch. We both loved it!
5. Does Dad sometimes feel left out of this new adventure of parenthood?
“He is enjoying the massage and the connection it creates with us. It’s good for the baby and creates a bonding activity with parents . Great for dads. Definitely do it!
He is enjoying the massage and the connection it creates with us. It’s good for the baby and creates a bonding activity with parents. Great for Dads. Definitely do it!
One of the things I recommend to my clients when they have a very colicky baby or a baby showing signs of reflux is to see an osteopath that has a specialty training for treating babies and children. Seeking advice from their Paediatrician and local Early Childhood Centre is important too but sometimes a combination of modalities including learning baby massage http://www.tinytouch.com.au can really help the babies symptoms and give baby and parents some much need relief.
I’m often asked what they do for the baby? Below is an great explanation from Julie Elwood from the Strandhill Clinic in Ireland that I had the great pleasure to meet and watch her work with children and adults, of what it is that Paediatric Osteopaths do.
“An osteopathic check-up following the birth can help pin-point potential problems and helps to ease the dramatic transition from life inside the womb to the outside world. This initial adjustment involves many bodily systems such as breathing and digestion. Stresses and strains from the labour or pregnancy can lead to unsettled behaviour and difficulties with feeding, winding, bowel movements and sleeping.
Paediatric osteopathy uses gentle manual techniques to bring about profound changes within a child or young person’s body, using non-invasive but highly effective rebalancing procedures. These allow the different body systems – the nervous, immune, muscular and circulatory systems – to work effectively.
The osteopathic management of children at all ages is rewarding as the aim is to ensure that every aspect of growth is taking place appropriately, resolving issues promptly as they arise.
Julie Elwood Clinic Strandhill, Ireland”
Don’t forget to watch JABBED on SBS one tonight at 8:30 pm if you want to learn more on the pros and cons debate on Childhood Vaccinations!