My new baby is 6 weeks old. He has horrible gas all the time. I've tried restricting foods from my diet as I am breastfeeding, but that does not seem to make a difference. He is keeping me all night and all day with these horrible grunting noises. Any other suggestions on how I can help my poor little guy?
The issue your having is quite normal in newborn babies. They have a very sensitive gut and some take time to mature. It is wonderful that you are providing breastmilk to your baby. By doing so you are helping his gut mature naturally.
As far as foods to avoid....there is no list of foods that every mum should avoid while breastfeeding. In fact, most babies are fine with any food that mum eats, so there is no reason to avoid a food unless you notice an obvious reaction in your baby every time you eat a particular food.
Most babies are gassy from time to time, some more than others. Gassiness is often worse at night. This is due, on the most part, to baby’s immature digestive system and has nothing to do with what mum does or eats. Because so many people promote the idea that food in mum’s diet causes gas, many a breastfeeding mum will immediately assume it is due to something she has eaten if her baby is gassy.
Many young babies have a certain amount of gas and seem to strain as it is passed or as a bowel movement occurs simply because of the immaturity of their digestive system. This doesn’t always indicate a problem. Most babies’ bodies manage gas more easily with growth, maturity, and greater activity. As long as your baby is not overly bothered by the gas or has no other symptoms of food sensitivity or other problems, then “tincture of time” is likely the best solution.
Gas can also be caused by to much milk too fast, so that baby gulps and chokes and takes in too much air along with the milk.
Anything that causes baby to take in too much air may result in a gassy baby (what goes in must come out!): Such as frequent crying spells.
Also overabundant milk supply, lots of milk in a short period of time.
Babies who skip several days between stools tend to be gassier. Older breastfed babies (after the first 6-8 weeks) can go several days without a stool. Ten days or more is not uncommon! The long periods between stools in a baby who is obviously thriving is not a cause for concern if the baby’s abdomen remains soft, baby is content and alert, and the stool is soft and profuse if several days have gone by.Sensitivity to something in mother’s diet, including any vitamin/iron supplements, etc. If this is the reason, you will most likely notice other symptoms, such as excessive spitting up or vomiting, colic, diarrhea, rash, persistent congestion or runny nose.
Anything that baby is eating/drinking other than mother’s milk, including vitamins, formula, teas, medications or herbs, solids, juice. Any substance (other than breastmilk) has a much greater potential to increase gassiness rather than reduce it.
Formula feeding tends to cause more gas and digestive upset for most babies because it is not specific to the human baby. Formula-fed babies overall tend to spit up more, be constipated more, have more gas, be more colicky, have more intestinal illnesses, etc. Remember, too, that supplementation most always undermines your milk supply and may result in premature weaning.
Breastmilk is made from what passes into mom’s blood, not what is in her stomach or digestive track. Below are a few common questions that moms have about breastfeeding and gassy babies.
I hope that this helps you figure out whats normal and whats not.
Also possibly asking in the forums on ways to hold a gassy baby to help with fussiness. Im sure some other mums would chime in on advice as well.