Being a new mom can be hard. It’s tough enough trying to figure out this whole parenting thing, but when your baby is constantly crying and you don’t know what to do, it can feel like you’re going crazy.
You often overreact to everything that is happening with your baby, especially when it is your first time experiencing it.
Sometime during your baby’s first year, you’re likely to hear an odd noise emanating from their little body – those are hiccups. Believe it or not, baby hiccups are actually a common occurrence in newborns.
Some babies even start hiccupping in the womb. Babies can get hiccups for many different reasons, but most of the time they are nothing to worry about.
Hiccups can be quite common in newborns. If your baby is eating and growing normally, then there is probably no need to do anything.
However, although they usually don’t cause any serious health problems, they can be quite annoying for both baby and parent. And when it comes to baby hiccups, many parents are often at a loss as to what to do.
If you’re looking for ways to get rid of those pesky hiccups, then keep reading.
In this article, we’ll share more information about baby hiccups including the things that cause them, how to prevent them, and some tips on how to get rid of them to help ease the discomfort of your little one.
What are Baby Hiccups
Baby hiccups are regular sporadic contractions of the diaphragm muscle, a dome-shaped muscle that sits between your chest and abdomen.
The contractions are often caused by overfeeding, which irritates the stomach, and when this happens, the diaphragm and other muscles surrounding the stomach spasm.
The contractions are also sometimes caused by a sudden change in temperature, large amounts of crying, the mother’s breastfeeding, or even too much laughter. Baby hiccups generally don’t cause any harm and will eventually go away on their own.
What Causes Baby Hiccups
There are a number of different things that can cause baby hiccups. Here are some of the most common causes:
Eating or drinking too quickly
When a baby eats or drinks too quickly, it can cause them to hiccup. This is because when the stomach expands from taking in too much food or liquid at once, it puts pressure on the diaphragm, the muscle that separates the chest cavity from the stomach.
This pressure causes the diaphragm to contract, and that results in a hiccup. Medical experts believe that this is why burping a baby after feeding can help to prevent hiccups.
By releasing some of the air that has been swallowed along with the food or drink, there is less pressure on the diaphragm and less chance of newborn hiccups.
When you feed your baby, make sure to take your time and let them eat and drink at their own pace.
Swallowing of air is the most common and trivial cause of hiccups in infants. It is a part of their normal development process.
The air they collect in their stomach and intestines, distends the organs and presses on the diaphragm. When it is pressed on, it spasms and contracts, resulting in the ‘hic’ sound that we associate with hiccups.
Laughing or crying hard
Have you ever wondered why your baby gets hiccups after laughing or crying hard? It turns out that there is a scientific reason for this phenomenon. When we laugh or cry, our diaphragm contracts and forces air into our lungs.
This sudden rush of air can cause the stomach to push up against the diaphragm, leading to hiccups. In addition, laughter and crying can also trigger the release of adrenaline, which can further exacerbate the problem.
Babies often breathe deeply when they’re upset or when they have a cold, and this can lead to hiccups. When they take a deep breath in, their diaphragm contracts and moves downward.
This downward movement increases the volume of their chest cavity, which causes a decrease in air pressure.
The air outside of your baby’s body rushes in to equalize the pressure, and as it does so, it causes the stomach to bulge out slightly. This bulging of the stomach presses against the diaphragm, which can lead to baby hiccups.
Babies can get hiccups after exercising, especially if they’ve been running around a lot.
As the baby’s body moves, the diaphragm and stomach muscles contract. This causes a momentary disruption in the baby’s breathing, which results in the hiccup sound.
Breastfeeding and bottle-feeding
Hiccups are a common occurrence in both babies who are breastfed and those who are bottle-fed. The main difference is that breastfeeding hiccups tend to be shorter and less frequent than bottle-feeding hiccups.
Breastfeeding can sometimes trigger this spasm, but it is more likely to occur when a baby is bottle-feeding. This is because the baby has to work harder to suck milk from a bottle than from a breast.
How to Prevent Hiccups in Babies
While hiccups naturally happen to babies, they still give discomfort to your little one.
And while you can’t totally stop them from happening there are a few things you can do that might help prevent baby hiccups.
Keep in mind that not all of these methods will work for every baby, so you may have to try a few until you find one that works for your child.
Track timing of hiccups
Hiccups are generally harmless and will usually go away on their own. However, they can occasionally be a sign of an underlying medical condition.
For this reason, it is important to track the timing of hiccups in infants. By doing so, parents can be alert for any patterns that may indicate a problem. For example, if an infant consistently hiccups after eating, this could be a sign of gastroesophageal reflux disease.
In addition, if an infant hiccups frequently or for extended periods of time, this may be a sign of a respiratory infection. By tracking the timing of hiccups, parents can be more quickly aware of any potential problems.
This can help you determine if they are getting better or worse, and may also give you a clue as to what is triggering them.
Feed smaller amounts more often
Babies are particularly susceptible to hiccups because their diaphragms are still developing. One of the most effective is to feed smaller amounts more often.
This allows the baby to digest the food more slowly and prevents the stomach from becoming overly full, which can trigger a hiccup attack.
Feeding them with smaller amounts also gives the diaphragm a chance to recover between feedings, and it can help to prevent the spasms from occurring in the first place.
Burp your baby regularly
Burping a baby regularly can help to prevent hiccups. When a baby eats, they swallow air along with their food. This air accumulates in their stomach, which can cause discomfort and lead to hiccups.
Burping helps to release this air and prevent it from building up. There are a few different ways to burp a baby, but the most common is to hold them upright against your shoulder and pat their back gently.
Some parents also find it helpful to give their baby a drink of water before burping them. By burping a baby regularly, you can help to prevent hiccups and keep them comfortable after feedings.
Check your baby’s bottle
Checking your baby’s bottle can help prevent these hiccups by making sure that the baby is not overeating or drinking too much. In addition, it can help to burp the baby after feedings to release any swallowed air.
When you are checking your baby’s bottle, it is important to also check the nipple. The nipple should be of the correct size according to the age of your baby. If the nipple is too big, then your baby may end up swallowing too much air, which can lead to hiccups.
In addition, the bottle should not be too full, as this can also cause your baby to swallow air. By ensuring that the nipple is of the correct size and that the bottle is not too full, you can help to prevent your baby from getting hiccups.
How to Get Rid of Hiccups in Babies
Hiccups are often treated as a minor annoyance, but they can actually be quite disruptive.
Fortunately, there are a number of simple strategies that can help to get rid of hiccups.
Rub your baby’s back
According to Pediatricians, hiccups are caused by an interruption in the normal breathing pattern, and one way to fix this is by rubbing your baby’s back.
Rubbing your baby’s back can help to get rid of hiccups for a number of reasons. First, it helps to relax the diaphragm, the muscle that controls breathing.
Second, it can help to break up any pockets of air that have built up in the chest. Finally, it provides a gentle massage that can help to soothe and calm your baby.
Burp your baby
Many parents have tried various methods to stop their baby’s hiccups, but one of the most effective and simplest methods is also one of the most overlooked – burping the baby.
Burping your baby can help to get rid of hiccups for two reasons. First, burping helps to release any trapped air in the stomach. This can help to relieve the pressure that is causing the hiccups.
Second, the act of burping can help to reset the diaphragm, which is the muscle responsible for controlling breathing. By burping your baby, you can help to stop the hiccups and prevent them from coming back.
Change your baby’s position
Changing the position of the baby’s body momentarily interrupts the nerve signal that causes the muscles to spasm and create the “hic” sound.
This break gives the baby’s body a chance to reset and return to its normal rhythm. The most common way to change an infant’s position is by holding them upright and gently tilting their head back.
This allows gravity to pull the stomach contents away from the diaphragm, interrupting the nerve signal and giving the baby’s body time to reset. Other effective positions include lying on their side or sitting in an upright position with their chin resting on their chest.
Offer your baby a pacifier
Sucking on a pacifier helps to relax your baby’s diaphragm and prevent further spasms. In addition, the act of swallowing often helps to break the hiccup cycle.
This method is often used by pediatricians and is generally safe for infants. However, it is important to make sure that the pacifier is clean and free of any sharp objects that could injure your baby’s mouth.
Choose the best pacifier for your newborn by experimenting with different shapes until you find one that is comfortable for your baby so it can be used without fussing about it being in the mouth too long.
Hiccups are often caused by dehydration so make sure your baby is drinking enough fluids. The best liquids to give your baby are water, juice, formula, and breast milk.
All of these fluids are packed with nutrients that your baby needs to grow and develop. They also help to keep your baby hydrated, which can help to prevent or stop hiccups from happening.
Give gripe water
Gripe water is a herbal remedy that helps to relax the stomach muscles and reduce inflammation. It is usually given to babies after feeding, and many parents find that it provides quick relief from hiccups.
The active ingredients in gripe water, such as ginger and fennel, baking soda, and herbs help to relax the diaphragm and stop the spasms that cause hiccups.
There is gripe water being sold in pharmacies, health food stores, and grocery stores. This gripe water is being marketed as a treatment for different illnesses that are being experienced by babies.
While you can buy gripe water in pharmacies, you can also make your own homemade gripe water at home. There are a few ways to make gripe water. You can make it with or without ginger, and you can also add other ingredients like chamomile or fennel.
Here’s a recipe for gripe water that includes ginger:
Ingredients: 1 liter of water, 1 teaspoon of grated ginger, 1 tablespoon of honey, 1/2 teaspoon of lemon juice
- Bring the water to a boil.
- Add the ginger and honey, and simmer for 10 minutes.
- Remove from heat and let cool.
- Strain the liquid and discard the ginger.
- Add the lemon juice and mix well.
- Pour into a bottle and store in the fridge.
Is it safe to use a home remedy of putting a spoonful of sugar in the baby’s mouth?
When it comes to hiccups, everyone seems to have a home remedy that they swear by.
From drinking a glass of water upside down to eating a tablespoon of peanut butter, there are many supposed cures for this pesky problem.
However, one popular home remedy, putting a spoonful of sugar in the baby’s mouth, may do more harm than good.
In general, sugar is not good for babies because it lacks protein, fat, and nutrient density, which are the usual needs of babies. Too much sugar can also affect the baby’s appetite for formula or breast milk.
Moreover, sugar can lead to increased risk of high blood pressure, obesity, and diabetes. If needed, you may give sugar water to your baby, but give it in moderation.
When to look for a medical help
Hiccups are common and they usually go away on their own. However, there are times when hiccups can be a sign of a more serious underlying medical condition.
If your baby has hiccups that last for more than 24 hours or if they start to have trouble feeding, it is important to seek medical help. Hiccups can sometimes be a symptom of an infection, so it is important to rule out any potential underlying causes.
Once hiccups start to interfere with your baby’s breathing to the point that the baby is turning blue, you should be alarmed and contact your pediatrician right away.
Bottom line is, if you are concerned, it is always best to err on the side of caution and consult with your child’s healthcare provider.
As a parent, it’s important to know how to prevent those things that give discomfort to our little ones, even those things as simple as hiccups.
After reading this article, and now that you know the causes of baby hiccups and some ways to get rid of them, you can relax a bit more when your child gets the hiccups – and rest easier knowing that you’ve taken steps to help them stop.
When one day your baby has hiccups, we hope that the tips we shared here will help you get rid of baby hiccups easily. Let us know how it turned you, we’ll surely be glad to hear about it!