Having a newborn is supposed to be one of the happiest times in your life.
You spend 9 months or more preparing for the new arrival, getting excited over baby names and nursery designs, and imagining time and time again what your new baby might look like and how those first moments of meeting them will be.
And of course, first time parents usually dedicate time to finding out everything they can about what to expect from childbirth, how to do the basics like change a nappy or sterilise things.
But often when baby arrives, it's something that we didn't prepare for that leaves us feeling a bit like we're stumbling around in the dark.
For me, that moment came about 4 weeks in - I remember it very clearly. I was sitting at home with my new baby son, we'd been enjoying some cuddle time on the sofa before his Daddy got home from work. When suddenly he started crying...it was a very specific pained sort of cry that I'd seen him do a few times over the past few days, but this time he wasn't stopping.
I tried everything to soothe him - I tried winding him, rocking him, singing to and shushing him, I tried laying him in different positions, I tried feeding him - nothing seemed to help.
My mum was there too and she tried to soothe him but again, nothing worked.
And when, almost an hour later, he still hadn't stopped crying...we decided we had to take him to the hospital to be seen to.
Maybe it was over cautious, I don't know...but when you're a new mum with a baby who seems to be screaming out in pain and will not calm down, what else can you do!?
After a 2 hour wait at the walk in centre, we were told that my son was suffering with colic and sent on our way with little advice on what this was or what to do about it.
Our experience wasn't uncommon...our youngest son suffered terribly with colic too. Infact 1 in 5 babies is thought to suffer with colic.
I wish that I'd spent a little more time during my pregnancy getting familiar with such afflictions, and understanding what to do about them but how many first time mums do?
Last week I was given the chance to look at a book from Christian Bates, an Osteopath and Naturopath who has 20 years of experience in treating babies for colic and birth traumas.
The book, Calming Colic, explores in detail the 10 causes of colic in infants and offers practical advice and solutions for parents to put into place to help ease their little ones suffering and restore calm back to their lives.
Christian Bates sees colic as a symptom rather than a disease or illness in itself, and states that in order for the symptom to be relieved, the cause needs to first be identified and resolved.
I found the book fascinating and it now makes so much more sense to me why all of my children have suffered so badly with colic, as all 3 were c-section deliveries - Christian Bates explains in details how and why a c-section birth can cause colic in babies, as well as causing some other symptoms which were also present in my children when they were newborn.The book looks into the diets of breastfeeding mums as this too plays a big part in colic.
But birth, diet and delivery are just three of ten possible causes of colic, and the treatment suggested for each cause is different.
My favourite aspect of this book is the very helpful Step By Step Guide For Parents Who Need Help Quickly at the back - this easy to use checklist enables parents to quickly run down a Q & A system to help pinpoint the cause and correct treatment of your babies colic - I only wish I'd had this in my possession when my own babies were suffering.
If you are an expectant parent or your own baby is suffering with colic, I would highly recommend this book to both give you a better understanding of colic and its causes - and to help you troubleshoot any problems you experience with it. It's also worth referring details of this book too to anyone you know who might have a baby with colic. The more we talk about this, the more mums realise there is help and remedies available.
To purchase or find out more about the book or Christian Bates work, please visit www.calmingcolic.com
Priced at £5.99 for a PDF download or £9.99 for a Paperback copy.
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