Feeding your little one is an experience in itself! As burping is an essential part of feeding your baby, there are several ways to get this job done.
Burping is an essential activity after feeding. When babies feed on formula milk or mother’s milk, they swallow a lot of air. If your baby has not burped perfectly, the little air bubbles inside his little tummy can upset him and can cause crankiness, spitting up and gassiness. Hence, frequent burping between and after feeding is important, even when your baby does not need to.
Burping A Breastfeeding Baby Vs A Bottle-Fed Baby:
Babies feeding on mother’s milk typically do not have to burp as often as bottle-fed babies. Bottle-fed babies tend to suck in a lot of air. Bottle allows faster milk-flow which forces babies to gulp down air between closely spaced gulps. Babies feeding on their mothers have much controlled milk-flow and thus, they suck in a slower rhythm which gives way for proper swallowing and breathing coordination.
How To Burp A Baby?
Burping a baby is not an easy task. Sometimes, feeding can be a frightening experience for new parents. Don’t worry; we are here to help you learn more! The first lesson is – Always remember to burp a baby after every feeding session.
There are generally three types of burping methods and you can experiment whichever is most comfortable and effective. You can try out any of the following methods:
1. Sit & Burp:
Sit straight and hold your baby against your chest, resting his chin on your shoulder. Support your baby with one hand and rub him back with another. This will relieve him off his trapped air bubbles inside his stomach.
This method can be tried in another way too. Bring your baby farther up on your shoulder, so that his tummy is little pressed with your shoulders, rub his back slowly. This would create a gentle pressure on his stomach and will help the burp out.
If you are trying out the alternate method, make sure your baby is able to breathe comfortably. Best is to apply this burping method while sitting in front of a mirror, as your baby will have comfort over neck and head.
2. Burp on Lap:
Place your baby carefully on your lap while providing support to your baby’s chest and hand with your one hand. Lightly grip your baby’s jaw in your other hand’s palm, make sure your hand is placed in such a way that it both cradles your baby as well as supports his chest. You must be careful while gripping your little one’s chin, not the throat! Pat your baby’s back gently with your other hand.
This will help him relieve off his gas. Be prepared with the burping cloth or a bib over your lap to catch any spit-up.
3. Face Down Burping:
Sit upright and place your little one over your legs; he must now be lying perpendicular to your body and across your knees. While giving support to his jaw and chin with your one hand, gently rub his back with your other hand.
Be sure your baby’s head is not lower than the rest of his body, it should be raised around 45 degrees. In this method too, you must put a burping cloth over your legs to save yourself from the mess created by any spit-up.
Is Your Baby Ready For Burping?
One thing that should be kept in mind while trying out any of the burping method is that if after giving up or trying a different position, if your baby does not get a burp, that means the baby is not yet ready for a burp. So, you must wait for some more time.
Important Tips for Burping:
Here are some tips on how to burp a baby. Changing feeding positions and burping halfway through feeding is vital as it reduces the chances of swallowing air. Here are some more important tips and warnings that should be taken care of during burping:
Bottle fed babies should be allowed to be fed in a more upright posture with more smaller and frequent feedings. This reduces the chances of your baby swallowing more air doing the feeding process.You must look out for the signs on your baby for burping, during or after feeding. Your baby will seem to be uncomfortable, squirmy, begins crying or pulls away. If you give burping a try, it will work for him.You must stop feeding your baby, if he seems to be fussy and has GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease), burp him and then start feeding again. If you are bottle feeding, try burping baby after every 60 to 90 milliliters (2-3 ounces) of milk and each time during switching breasts, while breastfeeding.You can try burping at every ounce during bottle feeding and in every 5 minutes during breastfeeding, if your baby seems to be gassy and spits up profusely.If your baby has colic (continued crying for more than three hours a day), she may swallow more air during crying spells and become crankier. Do not use anti-gas drops as it has been not proven yet, if it can treat gas or colic in babies. Sometimes, using self-medication can be dangerous, so always consult your physician.
Older babies need not to be burped often as they have learned to eat without swallowing a lot of air. After feeding, you must practice keeping your little one in an upright position for 10-15 minutes in the initial 6 months, might be a bit longer if he has GERD. This will help prevent milk to come up in the throat and also avoid spit-up. Happy feed times!