What is Colic and What are the Anti-Colic Baby Bottles?

If you have been up for nights on end, trying to soothe a crying, colicky baby, you will know just how distressing the condition can be for both babies and parents. You can avoid or minimize it to an extent by correcting the way your baby drinks milk since swallowing air during feeding can cause gas and aggravate the colic. Choosing the right baby bottle can help with this. Here’s what you need to know about colic and anti colic baby bottles:

What is Colic?

Colic generally affects babies when they are a few weeks old and may plague them on and off until they are three to four months of age. While it is neither a life-threatening condition nor one with long-term consequences, it can be painful, and your baby will be restless, sleepless, and cry intensely. The colic bout can last for a few minutes to an hour or longer.

There is no definite known cause for colic, but it affects the immune and digestive systems of babies, and the gas plays a role in exacerbating the ailment. Fortunately, there are many anti-colic baby bottles in the market, and they can be quite effective.

What are Anti-Colic Baby Bottles?

Anti-colic baby bottles are ones whose structural designs prevent babies from ingesting gas along with their milk. These have tubes at the neck that push the incoming air to the bottom of the bottle. So, when the baby suckles on the nipple, he or she can drink the milk without having to ingest the air that might cause abdominal pains.

There is a range of anti-colic baby bottles in the market, which can make selecting the right one a trifle bewildering for new parents. To narrow down your options, you might want to consider the following selection parameters:

Nipple Flow, Shape, and Valve

Baby bottle nipples come with one or two holes to regulate the flow of milk. The ones with one hole have a slow milk flow and are best for newborns to up to six-month-old babies. Older babies can manage two-hole nipples that allow for faster milk flow. If your baby is prone to colic, get a slow flow nipple that will let him or her get the food intake he or she requires and, at the same time, won’t upset their stomach.

To facilitate better feeding, baby bottle nipples need to be as close to breast nipples as possible. Their design should also prevent air from getting trapped within. If possible, get a nipple with an in-built valve that will release air out and prevent air bubbles from forming in the milk.

However, you will still have your work cut out finding the right shaped nipple as most babies have individual preferences. You may have to experiment with different narrow and wide nipples to get the one that your baby latches onto with gusto.

Bottle Shape, Vents, and Liners

While the standard baby bottles are straight or curved, there are also angled bottles that direct incoming air to the bottom and thus prevent its ingestion with the milk. It is a decent choice if your baby likes you to hold him or her upright during feeding. If your baby prefers being cradled in a reclining position while feeding, the regular bottle shapes will work out fine. Look for bottles with in-built valves to direct air to the bottom.

You may also want to consider baby bottles with disposable liners. When your baby feeds from a bottle, the sucking creates a vacuum and pressure build-up. For the milk flow to continue, it is essential to release the pressure. It happens with an inward flow of air. That can create air bubbles in the milk that the baby will swallow and which would lead to colic.

Disposable liners, on the other hand, collapse inward as the baby feeds, creating a vacuum within the bottle that doesn’t require a release for smooth and continuous milk flow. So, there will be less of an issue with air flowing back to create bubbles.

Anti-colic baby bottles are invaluable when it comes to feeding babies. They will make sure that your baby gets the necessary nutrients without having to suffer from digestive issues.

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