Skip to main content
Colic

Colic is when a baby is crying a lot and it's not clear why. It's a common problem that should get better on its own.

The main symptom of colic is a baby crying a lot for no obvious reason.

You can usually help with colic by doing things like gently rocking your baby on your shoulder, winding them after feeds or giving them warm baths.

It's not exactly clear what causes colic. It may be because some babies find it harder to digest food, or sometimes they may have a food allergy.

Read more on the NHS website.

The main symptom of colic is a baby crying a lot for no obvious reason.

Check if your baby has colic

All babies cry, but your baby may have colic if they cry more than 3 hours a day, 3 days a week for at least 1 week.

They may cry more often in the afternoon and evening.

It may also be colic if:

It can start when a baby is a few weeks old. It usually stops by the time they're 6 months old.

Read more on the NHS website.

You can usually help with colic by doing things like gently rocking your baby on your shoulder, winding them after feeds or giving them warm baths.

Self-care

Your baby does not usually need to see a doctor if they have colic. Speak to your health visitor for advice and support.

Health visitors and doctors will usually advise you to:

  • hold or cuddle your baby when they're crying a lot
  • sit or hold your baby upright during feeding to stop them swallowing air
  • wind your baby after feeds
  • gently rock your baby over your shoulder
  • gently rock your baby in their Moses basket or crib, or push them in their pram
  • bath your baby in a warm bath
  • have some gentle white noise like the radio or TV in the background to distract them
  • keep feeding your baby as usual

Other things you may hear about include:

  • anti-colic drops and herbal and probiotic supplements
  • changes to your diet if you're breastfeeding
  • applying gentle pressure to your baby's spine (spinal manipulation) or skull (cranial osteopathy)

But there's very little evidence these things work. Speak to your health visitor for further advice.

Read more on the NHS website.

It's not exactly clear what causes colic. It may be because some babies find it harder to digest food, or sometimes they may have a food allergy.

Read more on the NHS website.