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  Burping – General info
I really can’t get the hang of getting my baby to burp – can you help!

The air that babies consume together with their food makes their tummies feel prematurely full. Then hunger returns very quickly, because the tummy was full of air and not food. This is equally true of bottle and breast feeding. This is not conducive to a happy mother or baby! In addition, the trapped air can really make a baby feel uncomfortable, and is thought to be one of the contributing factors to colic.

So how do you know when your baby needs burping? There are a couple of signs to watch for, the classic one being that they pull their little legs up to their chests. When you are feeding, and baby feeds for a short time and then seems to either lose interest or become irritable, it’s a sure sign of stuck air! In general, when baby seems restless and unable to settle down, it’s always worth a try to get baby to burp and see if that relieves the situation.

When you are feeding and baby seems to need to be burped, the easiest position to try is to lift baby up to your shoulder and rub her back with firm movements in a circular motion. Gentle patting can also be effective. If you are lucky, just lifting baby up can be enough to release the wind. Walking with baby in this position, patting the back, can be a good way to get rid of a stubborn wind.

Other positions to try – let baby lay face down across your legs and gently bounce your legs. Rubbing the baby’s back in the position can help, as can raising one leg so that baby’s head is slightly elevated. Even if this does not produce a wind, it may release it enough that when you lift baby up, that satisfying burp is heard. Lying baby along your arm and rubbing her back with the other hand can work. Try sitting baby on your lap while you hold the jaw between your thumb and finger. Rubbing baby’s back in this position, lifting the arms, or gently pulling the body slightly upwards are all worth a try.

Many mothers swear by the effectiveness of gripe water is helping release wind and making babies easier to burp. So if you are struggling with wind, gripe water is worth a try.

See also:

Burping - Breast vs Bottle

Burping - Father’s Skill

Burping - Volume

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