Why do babies struggle with gas?

Bringing up a baby needs much care and caution of its parents for the better safety and healthy growth of a child. A baby cannot express its discomfort in its infancy, and this increases the fear and anxiety of its parents. The young parents often find it difficult to find solutions to the day to day difficulties new-borns faces. Intestinal problems and problems related to the gas of new-born are very common. The immature digestive organs of a neonatal often find it difficult to digest even if it is fed completely on breast milk or milk-based solutions. This leads to their discomfort, and often they become fussy without any reason. But if the parents take a close look at the child’s behavior and take some rapid actions, these common troubles may be cured without any need for medication.

Why is my baby so gassy?

  • Production of gas in the intestines is a very common thing for all living animals. As we eat, our body absorbs the vitamins, minerals, and proteins while the excess part in the intestine creates Hydrogen and Carbon dioxide Gas. The immature intestines and digestive organs of a baby often fail to absorb and digest the food properly and create gas.
  • The babies often thrive on breastfeeding, and air absorbed at the time of sucking often creates gas in little abdomens. Sometimes the diet and consumption of some acidic foods by the child’s mother may cause gas while breastfeeding the child.
  • The new-born often cries aloud, and air bubbles pass through their mouth and create abdominal gas.
  • Even if the baby is not feeding on breast-milk, often the bubbles created at the brims of milk-mixtures in bottles create gas. Often the baby may chew the empty nipples or sucks at the tip of the nipple. As a result, more air passes through the baby’s esophagus and makes your baby gassy.

How do I know that my baby is gassy?

As little children cannot express their discomfort, they rely mostly on expressing their problems by crying or by making physical gestures. This may vary from child to child. Most babies become fussier and continue crying for hours or days. They often take their legs towards their chest and kick while some others refuse to sleep or eat. Passing gasses for a gassy baby is very common, but sometimes they fail to move gas out, and it causes discomfort. If you see any of such symptoms in your baby, your baby is probably gassy. If their discomfort is decreased after passing gas, then it was presumably caused by gas. However, developing gas is very common for infants, and they release gas to avoid discomfort. But sometimes, if the baby can not release gas properly or has any additional troubles, it surely needs attention and proper action.

What should I do to prevent gas from my baby?

The dear baby’s health issues are always an issue of concern for young parents. However, some little tips may help you out of this trouble. 

1. Change feeding postures

Babies are always suggested to be fed at an upright posture so that their belly remains below their mouth, and the food can pass straight to the abdomen. While breastfeeding your baby, you should also take a look at the baby’s lips so that they remain closed and excess air cannot pass through their lips. While using feeding tubes or bottles, the baby should suck at the bottom of the nipple rather than the tip, and the bottle should be kept in such a position that the nipple remains full and air cannot pass. Once you shake the mixture, you should wait for it to sit and feed your child.

You can also use specialized bottles and nipples manufactured for less air submission. That will decrease the amount of air your baby swallows from the nipples. Avoid shaking bottles too often to avoid air bubbles in the bottle and try to feed ready-to-eat mixtures that have powdered solutions. Changing of nipples often show positive results. Try burping your baby at short intervals while feeding it. However, in such cases, the baby may cry and become fussier, especially if it is hungry. Thus air may pass while crying.

2. Change your diet

Babies often produce gas due to their mother’s food habits and diet, especially if the baby is breastfed. In such cases, the mothers are advised to avoid gas-producing vegetables, fruits, caffeine, onion, milk products, or any food that shows acidic reactions in the mother. However, avoiding too much food may affect the mother’s health, and she may become weak. So you should consult a physician before changing your diet.

3. Feed before your baby cry

Babies often express their hunger by crying. However, if the mothers can calculate when the baby feels hungry and feed it before crying, a large amount of air submission may be avoided that the baby shallows while crying. However, crying for babies is unpredictable, and it produces heat by swallowing air in its course.

4. Try some tips

Some simple practices while feeding the baby may help you to reduce discomfort caused by baby gas. Rubbing the baby on its back has proved to be useful to help it pass gas. By taking the baby on the arm, you may gently push on its abdomen to help it release gas. Tummy times are also helpful for babies. It strengthens their muscles and helps them crawl or lift their heads. During tummy time, babies release some amount of gas for the pressure on the tummy. However, they should not be kept on a bed on their tummy as this may increase their discomfort and harm their health.

5. What should I do if my baby is gassy?

Even after taking precautions, babies often become gassy. Sometimes they do not suffer much. But if the baby becomes too fussy or avoids food or sleep, it may need proper care.

6. Bi-cycle motion

Bi-cycle motion is a well-known technique to help little ones release gas. By making a circular motion with the hip and leg, the mother can help the child to add some pressure on the tummy and help it pass gas. By doing so, the baby becomes more comfortable.

7. Burping and rubbing on the back

Often mothers are suggested to burp the baby if they found their baby gassy. The gas passes a long distance through intestinal tubes, and burping often helps to cut down some amount of gas in its way. Rubbing on the back also helps the little ones to burp or pass gas with more ease. Rub on the back, shoulders, and legs to help it out. Often a message on the tummy or a nice warm bath may help the baby to lose gas.

8. Using gas drops and medicines

Using gas drops may also help your baby to get some relief if all the tricks do not work on it. Gas drops containing simethicone is also a good way to control gas for some children. Baby gripe water is also helpful to relieve fussy babies and help reduce gas. However, you should not use such medications without consulting a physician. Even if your baby does not respond to such treatments or tips, then it might need proper medicinal attention and medication. Suppose the baby is still fussy and shows additional symptoms of food allergy or intolerance of any particular food items. In that case, it is better to consult a pediatric physician for the betterment of your child’s health.

Just to wrap us, remember most of the time, baby gases are not very serious and do not cause much discomfort to the baby. But if you find any abnormality in the baby’s behavior or diarrhea or fever along with intestinal pain and acidity, then it is better to consult a doctor. Keep your baby safe and try to feed them with extra care so that your baby does not suffer any discomfort. After all, the baby’s comfort is the biggest concern for all parents.


Purvi Kothari founder of shishulife is a mother of one beautiful girl and growing her well giving her experience on how to tackle the kids.  She holds a degree in MBA and CS and currently pursuing PhD in business communication. Apart from writing a blog in shishulife her worlds revolve around photography, family, and baking.

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