More Thoughts on Colic

But first a little video of Jeff’s “Is Jasper Hungry” test!

I want to thank you all for your extremely thoughtful and useful advice on Jasper’s “colic” situation. I put “colic” in quotes because I don’t think his discomfort is colic at all, as colic is defined as ocurring only during a certain three hour period of the day. Jasper’s discomfort can appear at any time during the day (sometimes all day!).

In an act of desperation, I called our pediatrician to go in for a sick visit yesterday rather than wait for his one month well visit next Thursday.  An extra week of this hell seemed too long to endure! I wanted to try the zantac.

My reasoning is simple, first of all, reflux is much more common than milk protein, soy or any other allergy, so it makes sense to try the treatment for reflux first.  Second, its much easier to test for reflux vs. allergies because if he makes a miraculous turn around a day or two after starting zantac, we have our answer.  Dietary changes are a bit harder to pinpoint, particularly when you’re trying more than one thing at once. Also, I am only at week two of dairy elimination from my diet, and I couldn’t imagine waiting two more weeks to get some relief for our poor little guy. And third , selfish as it may be, I have little to no desire to go on a boiled chicken and rice diet unless I’m pretty sure I’ve exhausted the other options!

So we started Jasper on a super low dose (.8ml) of Zantac last night. So far I’ve noticed a bit less of the agressive throat clearing (which I call “the sound of the devil”) but he still writhed in gas pain for an hour and a half last night and periodically througout the day today. Obviously it’s too soon to tell, but I’m beginning to form a different opinion of our problem all together…

My new self diganosis? Overactive let down (and overactive milk supply.) I think there may also be a reflux problem, but the hours of writhing in gas pain can definitely be accounted for by my super forceful let down and abundant milk supply.

This article on Kellymom describes every one of our symptoms to a T.. the frequent pulling off (which often results in my milk squirting poor Jasper in the face!), choking, sputtering, clicking sounds etc. all of which results in him swallowing too much air and causes intestinal pain an hour or two later.

Interestingly, it also can cause too much foremilk to be swallowed, which causes even more gas due to it’s high lactose content.

I’m going to try forcing him off and catching the let down in a cloth a couple of times and see how that goes. It’s a messy business doing that, but maybe the answer to our problems.

It’s funny, I never would have pegged me for an oversupply kind of gal given that I didn’t “leak” at all during my pregnancy which I know some people do.. I also never drink enough water, but I guess those aren’t predictors of supply or I wouldn’t be in this situation.

I’ll keep you posted.. hopefully I’ll have my angel baby back in a matter of a few days rather than a few months!

Update: I tried pumping and giving Jasper a bottle for the first time yesterday – he behaved exactly like he does at the breast.. alternately writhing, spitting it out, arching and attacking it ravenously.. so now it seems it’s unlikely it’s just my let down if he does the same thing at the bottle. I also reread the symptoms of reflux and they are pretty much the same as the overactive let down.. so now I’m just as perplexed as ever!

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ariana says:

Hi Dee,
I got the Medela Pump In Style (that name always makes me laugh.. like we’re trying to be “stylish” when we pump!)
but I am not a SAHM, I work full time so really needed a great pump and it was a good investment for me. I’d consider the Almeda Purley Yours if I were you. its also a great pump but a bit less expensive.

Jasper’s “colic” turned out to be food allergies and reflux. He is now 7 months and he’s doing so much better. We are getting him off the reflux meds and he seems to be less allergic to things. Have you considered reflux? It’s pretty common for this to be the cause of “colicky” behavior.

Dee says:

Ariana,

what kind of breast pump did u get? I am considering doing a pump rental and was wondering if its worth buying vs renting. I am currently a work at home mom requiring to be out once or twice a week. Also, what happened to Jasper’s colic finally? My 7 week old also seems to be having similar symptoms.
Thanks

Alexis says:

So cute! Can’t wait to hold him.

Jamie says:

I am new to your site, found it accidentally through another blog… I went through the same exact thing 7 months ago. My daughter was born Jan 31st. She is now 7 1/2 months and still on Zantac. I went to the Dr. and lactation consultant every week for the first 2 months she was born. I’d be happy to tell you “our GERD/Reflux story” if your interested. Just shoot me an email.

Kath says:

That video is precious!
I’m dying to hear what conclusion you finally reach with Jasper’s fussing. Breastfeeding can be the pits. And then, in the same afternoon it can be so rewarding. I am currently reading your blog at 2:58am because my little guy just would not go to sleep!!!! He is what I like to call “a snacker” and it’s driving me crazy. Ugh. I wish you all the relief you could possibly get during these early weeks as a mommy.

Rachel says:

Hmm, we started Sofia on exactly the same dosage (.8) (actually we started on another medicine called axid which only worked for a few days and then stopped working, so we switched to zantac) and it seemed to correspond with her weight– once she got to 9 lbs, we had to go up to .9, etc. because all her symptoms would come back. I had exactly the same thing with milk letdown & overabundance and that worried me too– but after a while it seems to get in synch with what the baby needs. The zantac, I notice, takes about 2 days to work for her when we have to up her dosage, but then she’s usually fine for a couple weeks until she grows and we have to up it again. She’s at 11 lbs now and taking 1.1 milliliters of the stuff, twice a day… but it should start working within 48 hours, or maybe reflux is not the problem, or maybe the dosage is too low for his weight…

Dawn says:

Best of luck! You are all in my thoughts! Love the video – your boys look great! Hugs to you, I can’t imagine how hard it is just wanting and trying to make Jasper feel better.

Stephanie says:

Oh wow – fingers crossed that that is the problem – soooooo much easier to deal with than allergies! Good luck! :-)

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