Although doctors and parents have been trying to find out the true source of colic for many, many years, there has yet to be a confirmed answer as to why some babies cry non-stop and sleep poorly when they are very young. However, there is a new study out that may help some frustrated pediatricians and sleep deprived parents start to rest a little easier.

The new study found that colicky babies have a higher number of bacteria called Proteobacteria in their intestine than babies without colic. This bacteria can cause painful gas, according to study researcher Carolina de Weerth, a developmental psychologist at Radboud University Nijmegen in the Netherlands, which will ultimately lead to crying since babies have no other way to let mom and dad know they have a tummy ache.

Babies that are known to have colic also tend to have less of the bacteria that has anti-inflammatory agents, which can cause pain and inflammation when low or not present, according to de Weerth. The new study only examined 24 total babies (12 colicky, 12 normal) so there is still much research still to done, but once more information is known, medications may be made available  to help babies that suffer from the imbalance. Also, there may be testing to help redetermine if a baby will be more colic-prone so that treatments and preventative measures can begin sooner. Hopefully this is a step in the right direction so that moms and babies can begin to rest.

Do you think colic is caused by an imbalance in bacteria in a baby’s gut? Have you ever had a colicky baby? Share some tricks for calming baby down.


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  1. I used gripe water for my babies but no specific brand. It worked like a charm whenever I used it but my babies didn’t have Colic!

    • With the Gripe Water make certain that you are getting the original, Woodward’s Gripe Water. That formula has been around since the 1800’s and has never changed but there are a lot of imitators on the market.

      Just letting you know so you don’t feel as if you are getting advice form a teenager, I got this information from my mum and grand-mère and they wouldn’t give us anything that would harm us plus my dad being a physician wouldn’t let them.

      Hope this helps. I’ve been around babies with colic and it’s heartbreaking knowing you can’t do anything for them except comfort them until they tire themselves out. If you can’t get it online if you have family/friends overseas (like in the military), or in the USVI or BVI maybe they can get in for you.

  2. I had colic as a baby. I was told I cried every night for a month for no reason. My mother had Post Postpartum Depression and its a wonder she didn’t throw me out a window. Within a week we were in the islands (I guess my mum thought it would be more bearable there :-) ).

    My mother’s childhood nanny gave me something called Woodward’s Gripe Water which seem to almost instantly cure the colic. Unfortunately, Woodward’s Gripe Water was no lo longer allowed to be sold in the US anymore, the FDA banned it so my mum’s nanny got it from the British Islands. You can still get Woodward’s Gripe Water in the British Islands but not in the US or its territories.

    My mum swears that Woodward’s Gripe Water cures colic and I have to believe her since she had five more children after me and it’s been a staple in our homes.

    I don’t know why the FDA banned it. It’s been around since the 1800’s and is still available worldwide. It didn’t harm me or my siblings or cousins.

    • I don’t have any kids but my girlfirnd has, shes having a second one soon. The first one hsd colic so I would like to get some of this gripe water for her. Where can I get it? BTW is colic and gripe the same thing?

      • Colic and Gripe are ate same thing, at least in the islands and the UK. @Sidney said she found it on Amazon, but I told her to make certain it was the original Woodward’s Gripe Water since there are a lot of imitators with different formulas on the market.

        Nice of you to be doing this for your friend. My mum said my crying was worse than “fingernails on the blackboard”, I would tense up with my legs toward my stomach, and my mum felt useless,which I imagine made her PPD symptoms worse. Woodward’s Gripe Water and hand on help made all the difference.

        Even with the gripe water when your friend has the new baby there is nothing better than hands on help. If the new baby has colic, or even if it doesn’t you can still help by offering to sit with the baby several nights (not days) per week. You can watch the telly or do other things while still holding the baby so it wouldn’t seem like a chore or offer to take the older enfant to your place. The older enfant will appreciate having one on one attention from you (with a new baby the older one unintentionally gets less attention) and mum can concentrate on the enfant. In a perfect world, you would have the older enfant and dad watches the baby while mum sleeps for a whole night. :-) :-)

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