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Identifying and easing colic

Cranky or colic?

Q: My daughter’s been feeling overwhelmed after the birth of her first child. I told her it’s totally normal, but it does seem that my grandson cries more than most other infants I’ve been around. Could it be colic?

Dr. Wright: Medical scientists define infantile colic by the “rule of threes”: crying that lasts more than three hours a day for more than three days a week for more than three weeks.

During a crying fit, the baby becomes rigid with his legs drawn up, a tight abdomen, clenched fists, and a wrinkled forehead. Crying usually starts around the same time each day and is more intense in the latter half of the day. In most cases the problem appears before the child is six weeks old, and in around 50 percent of infants, it goes away by the time they’re three months old.

But there are some natural remedies that can help ease infants (and their parents) through colic. To read more about them, refer back to Kerry Bone’s article “Herbal secrets for quieting a colicky baby” in the November 2006 issue of Nutrition & Healing. Subscribers can download this issue for free by visiting and logging on to the archive with the username and password listed on page 8 of your most recent newsletter.