Babies are born with the physiological need to feed frequently–but that doesn’t mean they’re good at it. Because your bub’s digestive system will take some time to mature, burping is an integral part of the baby-care routine if you want to keep her happy and comfy. Check out the three best ways to burp.
As your little one gulps down milk, she swallows air. The air can cause discomfort, or make bellies feel full when they aren’t. If your baby cries or becomes restless during or after a feed, or turns her head away from bottle or breast, these may be signs that a good burping is required.
“Newborns are super gassy,” says Dr. Kristin Bencik-Boudreau, paediatrician and assistant clinical professor. “The best way to help them deal with it is to burp them half way through feeding. If they are nursing, do one side, burp them and then do the other side. If using a bottle, stop halfway through the feed burp them and continue on.”
“It’s okay if you don’t always get a burp – the kids are going to pass the gas one way or the other,” explains Bencik-Boudreau. “If they seem fussy I would keep trying, but if they are pretty content and you can’t get a burp, it’s okay to put them down.”
Over the Shoulder
Hold baby against your chest, with baby’s head resting on your shoulder–and on a muslin cloth, if you want to play it safe. Ensure baby is supported and can breathe freely. Using your other hand, firmly pat or rub her back until trapped air escapes.
Sitting on the Lap
Place muslin cloth on your lap, then sit baby on your lap facing away from you. Use one hand to support chest, and thumb, index and middle fingers to gently hold up her chin and head. Lean baby forward and firmly pat or rub back.
Lying Down on the Lap
Place cloth on your lap, and lay baby face down, perpendicular to your legs, and gently cradle her jaw at a comfortable height. Firmly rub or pat her back.
If your babe falls asleep during your chosen manoeuvre, the burp likely wasn’t needed–but hey; who’s complaining if the critter’s sleeping?