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Colic (in Infants)

Colic presents itself as continual crying of a baby without any apparent reason. The thing that differentiates colic from other problems is that no matter what you do, the crying doesn't stop. Certain body postures that occur with a gas attack may also occur with colic. For example, your baby may have a tense, distended tummy, with knees pulled up to the chest, clenched fists, and flailing arms and legs, or an arched back. Colic may become worse when baby is lying down and symptoms can improve when walked around. It may also help to lie the baby over your lap on its tummy and rub its back. Be sure to wind baby properly after feeds.

View colic products

Colic may be due to intestinal spasms that may be present from the second week of the newborn’s life to about the twelfth week. Another reason may be an immature gastrointestinal system. Incomplete digestion – in which bacteria grows on undigested food, producing gas and distension – may be irritating. Drinking milk and consuming dairy products by the mother may cause an allergic reaction in the child. Or if the baby is not breast fed then the milk formula may be causing a problem. Colic may also be caused by copper and/or lead in the tap water used to feed the baby. Nutrient deficiencies may be a cause.

If the problem persists beyond 3 months then it may be due to infant reflux. Reflux may be caused by hiatus hernia, oesophagitis or stricture as well as sensitivities to foods. Positioning of the baby influences the symptoms. Sitting upright 60 degrees from horizontal increases reflux. Less reflux occurs in the prone position there in the supine position.

Recommended Supplementation

Inner Health Plus Dairy free – Aids in the maintenance of a normal healthy gastrointestinal system and digestive function. Can help with digestive inflammation and sensitivity. This should be used by mom internally but can also be made into a paste and rubbed directly onto the nibble while breastfeeding.

Kids Calm – This Chamomile based liquid from KiwiHerb is suitable for all ages, from zero upwards.

Weleda Colic Powder – Contains an extract of Fennel with homeopathics for calming and soothing to the stomach and digestive system and helps relax the abdominal muscles and calm and soothe the baby.

Gripe Water – original formula used for relieving wind in babies. Uses Dill to relax the musvles in the digestive track and Meadowsweet that acts as a natural anti-acid.

New Era Comb E – Homeopathic combination for Indigestion, colicky pain and flatulence

Digestive Ease Tea – Contains Fennel seed, Aniseed, Peppermint, Dandelion root, Licorice root, Chamomile, Cinnamon. Can be taken by mum or given directly to the infant. Helps with digestive and stomach pain, nausea and soothes irritation.

Chamomile Tea - soothe emotional and digestive upsets. Can be taken by mom and also fed directly to baby.

Homeopathic remedies are a good way to go with such young children due to their lack of side effects. If over the counter homeopathics don’t prove useful then a consultation with a qualified homeopath may be advised.

Colimed Relief Spray – A combination of homeopathics to help with the symptoms of Colic. Such as Byronia for headaches, stomach upsets, dry throat and cough, Carbo Veg helps with slow digestion, food distresses, flatulent colic, Colocynthis for violent pains in the abdomen also for bilious colic and bilious vomiting and diarrhoea and mag phos which helps with cramping in the muscles, bloated full sensation, hiccups.

Chamomilla (6C) - A well-known homeopathic remedy for infant colic and teething

Mag. Phos (6C) - An effective and gentle homeopathic painkiller and is often recommended to safely treat cramping pain. It is suitable for all age groups including small babies

Herbal Tea

Chamomile is a well-known soother and relaxant. If you want to take Chamomile on its own, a breastfed baby's mother can drink 1 cup, twice a day of the Claridges Chamomile Tea. Give a bottle-fed infant 1 teaspoon of tea, three times daily, in formula or water, for three to four days. Then reduce the dosage to twice daily.

Fennel can also be helpful in relieving colic. The nursing mother can drink 1 cup of fennel tea, three times a day. Or dilute 1 cup of fennel tea in 2 cups of water, and give your baby 1 teaspoon of the diluted tea, four times a day.

Yogi Woman’s Nursing Tea has been used by breastfeeding mothers to help promote healthy milk flow as it contains fennel, fenugreek and anise. It also contains lavender to help eases stress and chamomile to soothe minor digestive upset accompanying nursing.

A nursing mother can drink 1 cup of ginger tea, three times a day, to help relieve her baby's colic.

Peppermint tea helps to speed the emptying time of the stomach, enhances digestion, and acts as an antiflatulent. Give your child 1 teaspoon of peppermint tea, four to five times a day.
Note: If you are giving your child peppermint tea as well as a homeopathic preparation, allow one hour between the two. Otherwise, the strong smell of the mint may interfere with the action of the homeopathic remedy.

Try giving your baby a combination herbal tea. Israeli researchers gave a daily dose of about 1/2 cup of a tea made from chamomile, licorice, fennel, and balm-mint (Lemon Balm) to babies who were experiencing episodes of colic, and found that symptoms were eased in more than half the children studied.

Nutritional Treatment

Check for food sensitivities especially milk. Switching to a goats milk formula if the child is not breast fed is a good option.

If the child is breast fed, the mothers diet should be investigated for possible allergens or food intolerances.  We offer this Food Sensitivity Test, which will analyze your body's reaction to 93 common foods, through detection of food-specific IgG antibodies via ELISA methodology


Nutritional Almanac, Gayla and John Kirschmann
Prescription for Nutritional Healing, James and Phyllis Balch
The Physician’s Handbook of Clinical Nutrition, Henry Osiecki
Beginner’s Guide to Homeopathy, T.S.Iver, B.A
Naturo Pharm Product Manual

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The Naturopathic Team
Ideal Health

Disclaimer: The health information presented here has been written for the New Zealand health consumer. It is of a general nature and is only intended to provide a summary of the subjects covered and is intended to be used for educational and general information purposes only. It is not intended as medical advice or as a means to diagnose, treat, cure or prescribe for any particular condition or disease. You assume all responsibility for the treatment which may be undertaken as a result of the information on this site, or treatment recommended by any other party. While all care has been taken to ensure the accuracy of the information, no responsibility or liability is accepted, and no person should act in reliance on any statement contained in the information provided. All health ailments should be treated by a qualified health professional.

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