Colic is a common condition in young babies that makes them cry for hours. According to AAD (the American Academy of Pediatrics) about one-fifth babies develop colic. What are the signs of this issue?
- Severe crying – it has a distinct, high-pitched sound
- Pulling legs up towards the belly
- Passing gas
- An enlarged belly
- A baby starts crying at the same time every day, often in the evening.
This issue may begin when a baby is about 4 weeks, or earlier, and continue up to 4 months. This period seems endless to a child’s parents or caregivers.
Pediatricians can’t say for sure what causes colic, however, they assume that it happens because of stomach upset or gas. That’s why parents are always looking for the best way to relieve baby gas. Despite the fact that no treatment was proven to eliminate baby colic, some caregivers keep gas relief drops or gripe water in the best baby first aid kit. By the way, to fight colic effectively, you should also know “Why is tummy time important?” as it’s a really helpful technique.
In this post, our team of experts will provide you with explanations on the gas drops vs gripe water. After reading it, you’ll be able to make the right choice between two options.
What Is Gripe Water
We often get asked “What is gripe water? What does gripe water do?” Read the answers below!
Gripe water is a well-known treatment from the old days, mothers and nannies have been using it from 1850. These days, parents give this alternative medicine to babies to reduce or eliminate colic.
It contains water and various herbs (fennel, chamomile, ginger, licorice, cardamom, cinnamon, clove, lemon balm, dill, peppermint); a set of herbs depends on manufacturers. However, every gripe water includes sodium bicarbonate and dill seed oil. Back in years, producers put alcohol or sugars in gripe water; people thought that these components could relax and comfort little ones. Luckily, modern treatments are sugar- and alcohol-free because, as we all know, these elements are toxic, especially for little ones.
- How does gripe water work?
Nowadays, adepts state that some components like fennel, ginger, licorice, and dill seed oil can relieve stomach discomfort and gas. That’s why gripe water is considered beneficial for little ones who suffer from colic.
- Is gripe water safe?
Generally, gripe water is safe, however, it can have side effects if caregivers give too much of this treatment to the baby. The sodium bicarbonate may cause alkalosis – the condition when blood gets too basic, not acidic. Besides, if gripe water is stored improperly it can develop fungi. Keep the water in the fridge or other cool, dry place and throw it away before the expiration date.
Benefits Of Gripe Water For Babies
A lot of parents like using gripe water for their little ones, besides pediatricians often give the go-ahead. So let’s summarize the benefits from this treatment for a baby:
- Gripe water provides a soothing effect on little tummy by relieving gas and stomach discomfort
- It has natural ingredients
- This treatment tastes sweet to babies, however, it doesn’t contain sugar
- It relaxes fussy little ones thanks to calming components like chamomile, peppermint, etc.
- Gripe water is also considered as a good treatment for teething pain
- It helps with hiccups.
What Are Gas Drops
Baby gas drops are liquid medicine made to reduce discomfort from bloating, gassiness and stomach pain caused by gases. Lots of parents often use drops to eliminate the symptoms of excess gas in babies. There are several types of remedy available on the market:
- synthetic one – contains simethicone (a mixture of silicon dioxide and polydimethylsiloxane, it has been in use since 1952)
- homeopathic drops – contain natural ingredients
- probiotic drops – contain useful bacteria
Your pediatrician might recommend any of these drops – they are all safe for little ones.
Can a newborn have gas drops? AAP (the American Academy of Pediatrics) states that gas drops are safe for children of different ages – from newborn to toddlers, side effects are rare. However, if a baby takes thyroid hormone therapy, it’s better not to give him/her simethicone drops because these two treatments can interact.
Benefits Of Gas Drops For Babies
Let’s take a closer look at the benefits of using gas drops for babies. Actually, they are numerous, but we’ll point out the ai ones:
- Gas drops are easy to give – you can mix them with formula or expressed breast milk
- They provide a soothing effect on the stomach by relieving gas and discomfort
- They give fast results – within 5 minutes
- They have a sweet flavor, which babies might like
- Some of the gas drops are FDA and AAP-approved
Which is better: gas drops vs gripe water?
These remedies have their own advantages. Although they don’t have a scientific background, gas drops and gripe water are safe. Sometimes parents give both these options to a baby, however, we don’t recommend doing so – the baby can react negatively, and you won’t know which treatment is to blame.
Now, when you know the difference between gripe water vs. gas drops, you should also learn some precautions so that you don’t do harm to your little one.
Read the instructions – before you open the box or bottle and give drops or water to your baby, do read the instruction. Get to know the right dosage for the little one, and whether there are any contraindications.
Always read the ingredients carefully – buy products with safe, natural ingredients. However, simethicone gas drops are safe for children, even though they are synthetic. If you hesitate about components, consult your pediatrician.
Watch for allergens in a remedy – although neither gripe water nor gas props contain allergens, you must stay alert. You never know how your little one will react to some of the ingredients. So, if you notice a rash, watery eyes, hives, itchiness, swelling, diarrhea, vomiting, problems with swallowing or breathing, call the doctor immediately.
Parents and caregivers swear by both treatments – gripe water and gas drops. However, it’s up to you which remedy to choose for your little one.
We, at top-mom.com, hope that after reading this post you are better equipped to handle baby colic effectively and make your and your baby’s life easier.