If you're a first-time parent, you've probably read a lot of books on parenting to make sure you were prepared for just about every scenario you might encounter. Colic is one scenario that you might not have prepared for. Unfortunately, colic is one of the most stressful situations that new parents, and new babies can encounter. There's never one sure-fire way to cure the discomfort that colic brings with it. Sadly, that means that soothing colic usually involves a system of trial and error. You keep trying new things until your baby finally calms down. While you're still trying to find the method that works for your colicky baby, here are three strategies you can use to alleviate the distress so you both can get some rest.

Go for the Football Carry

If you've ever played football, or watched someone play football, you know exactly how to hold a colicky baby. Place the baby over your arm, with their head up towards your elbow, their bottom in your hand, and their belly on your forearm. Gently bounce your baby as you hold him or her like a football. The pressure on his or her belly will loosen up the gas bubbles, while the gentle motion of the bouncing will relax him or her and lull him or her to sleep.

Reinvent the Womb

If you think the womb was a quiet place for your baby, you were wrong. The womb is filled with muffled noises, and lots of bumps along the way. You can alleviate the discomfort of colic by reinventing the womb for your baby.

Turn Up the White Noise

The first thing you want to do is recreate the noise your baby was used to. Turn on anything in your home that will make a static-type noise, such as a vacuum, or household fan. The static noise will help calm your baby down so he or she can rest.

Go for a Ride

If your baby won't calm down, and colic has him or her feeling miserable, it's time to go for a ride. Place your baby in his or her car seat and head out for a ride around town. The vibration from the car will help alleviate your baby's distress.

Try a Little Skin-to-Skin Contact

There may be times when all your baby will want is a little skin-to-skin contact. Touch can go a long way to alleviate the discomfort associated with colic. Try undressing your baby and massaging his or her skin. Be sure to rub in a light circular pattern on his or her belly to break up the gas bubbles that might be in there. Finally, find a quiet place in the house, open your shirt, and place your baby directly on your skin. The contact will help soothe your baby so he or she can relax and go to sleep.

If your baby has colic, use the tips provided here to help him or her feel better. If the symptoms don't resolve, or your baby appears to be in pain, you should contact your pediatrician. There may be an underlying medical condition that's causing the symptoms.

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