Friday, February 11, 2011

Colic schmolic

Nearly had a nervous breakdown earlier this week, when after three horrible no good very bad days, Andrew had slept hardly a wink and neither had I. I started writing down all his symptoms -- dry skin around his eyebrows, baby acne, screaming in apparent tummy pain, redness on his little hiney, infreqent bowel movements and the inability to sleep soundly and I decided that my little guy couldn't take the formula he was on. He would also fall asleep while eating so that he rarely finished a bottle, but then would wake up a few minutes later very hungry and very upset only to repeat the cycle when offered another bottle. So I called his doctor and the nurse I spoke with said to switch him to a different one made for fussiness and gas for a week to see if it would help. If he became unbearable, call her back.
So, on Wednesday morning after another terrible night of Andrew sleeping in fits and starts -- crying out in pain in his sleep and being a very unhappy boy -- I called back in what must have sounded like total desperation, asking if there was anything they could suggest to help my son sleep.
The nurse called back and said it probably wasn't the formula making my boy so cranky -- and told me that he probably had colic and there's not really anything you can do to fix it and that it usually doesn't last past the two or three month mark. Are you freaking kidding me? I was at the end of my rope, exhausted from the previous three days and trying to figure out how in the world I would survive until the two or three month mark when these symptoms are supposed to magically disappear.
Greg came home from work early that day so that he could take care of Andrew and I could try to rest. But I didn't really rest because I was so upset over the prospect of trying to cope with a colic baby and thinking how absolutely miserable Andrew must be. While I was trying to rest, my dear husband fed and changed Andrew and figured out that the new bottles I had bought were simply not working. Andrew was sucking so hard for hardly any reward -- so he would tire and fall asleep before finishing his milk. Greg switched him back to his old bottles and he drank it all down and promptly went to sleep and slept soundly.
So we think the nurse was wrong. Since we changed his formula and went back to the old bottles, Andrew has been relatively happy. He sleeps well without crying out and his other symptoms have disappeared.
So this week, we learned that despite their best intentions, those in the medical profession don't always know best. Mom and Dad know a thing or two as well.
I don't want to speak too soon, but I don't think our boy has colic. Thank goodness!

1 comment:

  1. Go, Mom & Dad! :) Here's hoping that the fussies were simply a matter of wrong bottle! Whew!

    I feel like "colic" does get thrown around too much. Of course I'm basing this on my very limited experience, but it always seems like an easy diagnosis to fall back on on--especially since the origin and treatment really are unknown.

    Have you ever read Happiest Baby on the Block? It has a great combination of tricks to tame a fussy baby (it mostly works for us, but there are times when it doesn't work). It looks at babyhood from the perspective of the "4th trimester", meaning that those first three months are like a continuation of pregnancy, so to speak. Pretty neat. What totally intrigues me about it all, though, is that there are some cultures where colic and fussiness simply DON'T exist--really interesting cultural implications there!

    Have a good weekend, Krista! Love Andrew's big blue eyes! :) What a sweetie!