One of the toughest challenges of being a parent to a newborn is figuring out why your baby is crying. Sometimes we feed them, change them, and distract them, and they still continue to cry. There are very few things more stressful for a parent than being unable to soothe your baby. Gas pains can be a common culprit for our baby’s fussiness. Many parents look for over-the-counter medications to ease their baby’s discomfort. However, it can be difficult to determine what medications are effective but also safe for your newborn. Today, I am addressing the common questions I get from my patients’ parents about newborn and infant gas pains and the differences between gas drops and gripe water as remedies to treat the discomfort.
How to Help a Gassy Baby: Gripe Water or Gas Drops?
Why is my baby gassy?
All babies have some gas, however, the amount of gas and the discomfort can vary between newborns. There are several different reasons why a baby can develop gas. Many times it has to do with air being brought into the stomach, which happens when a baby cries or drinks bubbles from a bottle. This air can get trapped in the stomach and cause discomfort. In addition, a newborn’s digestive tract is not fully developed, which can lead to gassiness and indigestion.
Some moms that breastfeed find that eating certain foods such as beans, cauliflower, or broccoli can cause their baby to become fussy. If you notice your baby reacts differently based upon the foods you eat, it is helpful to keep track of what you are eating and how your baby is reacting so you can discuss it with your pediatrician.
What can I do to prevent my baby from getting gas?
Although there is no absolute way to prevent your baby from getting gas, there are things you can to do to decrease the chances.
It is important to make sure that if you are using a bottle, the nipple allows for the right air flow. Drinking milk too fast or even too slow can lead to gas bubbles.
Dr. Brown’s is my favorite line of bottles! Their bottles have an internal system that routes the air through vents within the bottle, bypassing the milk. This system helps reduce air bubble oxidation, preventing gas and maintaining the vitamins in the milk.
When feeding a newborn, it is important to sit them up so their head is above their stomach. This will not only help with gas but reflux as well.
Finally, know your baby’s feeding schedule and try to have your gas remedy ready ahead of time. There are options for baby gas relief drops. And remember, crying can lead your baby to swallow air. So we want to prevent crying, especially when your baby is about to eat.
Is there anything I can do to help with my baby’s gas pains without having to use medicine?
Burping your baby is going to be one of the most effective ways to alleviate gas. I always recommend you keep your baby upright for at least 30 minutes after feeding to help combat gas and reflux.
If you find your baby is extremely fussy, try a warm bath and light belly massage to help break up the gas bubbles.
You can also try laying your baby on their back and moving their legs in a bicycling motion. Even tummy time is helpful to get rid of gas.
Gripe Water vs Gas Drops – My Expert Advice
So what’s my answer to Mylicon drops vs gripe water?
For many parents, over-the-counter remedies can be a lifesaver when it comes to alleviating their newborn’s gas pains. However, it can be difficult to know which remedy to choose, and which is the safest option for your newborn.
I get so many questions about gripe water vs Mylicon drops.
Mylicon Gas Drops are an FDA approved medication, whereas gripe water is considered a natural herbal remedy. Mylicon’s active ingredient is a simethicone, which works by breaking down the surface of gas bubbles. This ingredient helps the baby’s natural process of getting rid of the gas. Mylicon Gas Drops have been studied and approved by the FDA and deemed safe for use with newborns and infants of all ages.
Gripe water is an herbal remedy that contains sodium bicarbonate and herbs. Most brands of gripe water contain sodium bicarbonate combined with a variety of different herbs such as fennel, ginger, chamomile, cardamom, licorice, cinnamon, clove, dill, lemon balm, or peppermint.
It is important to note that gripe water has NOT been approved by the FDA to treat gas. The Poison Control Center also advises against using herbal supplementation in infants. It is important to note that the ingredients in gripe water can be absorbed into the bloodstream and on rare occasions can cause allergic reactions.
Most importantly, please always discuss a treatment plan with your pediatrician if your baby is suffering from gas pains.
Final Thoughts on Gas Drops vs. Gripe Water
We all dream of having a peaceful sleeping newborn, but the reality is that they can be temperamental and fussy. I hope these tips help you with your journey. Remember we are always here to help. If you have any questions, please feel free to leave them in the comments or email us directly.
*This post is sponsored, but all opinions are my own.*