Hiccups in the newborn baby: why it occurs and how to relieve it

Hiccups often becomes a concern for parents, especially when it appears most often in babies. Do your newborn baby hiccups several times a day? You might not know that up to 80% of children suffer during their first months of life. You do not worry, in most cases does not indicate a health problem, and also our advice will help alleviate it.

hiccups in baby

What are hiccups
We’ve all suffered at some point, but it is usual to ignore what it is and what causes it, because we hardly give importance. The truth is that as the years pass hiccups is increasingly uncomfortable for adults and that when our babies suffer from it begin to emerge us doubts.

Hiccups are a violent and sudden inspiration that occurs when involuntarily contract the diaphragm and intercostal muscles. The movements of the diaphragm are controlled by the phrenic nerve, and when it receives certain stimuli, begins sending ‘strange’ signals that cause the diaphragm to contract sharply repetitively while the glottis is closed. Although it may be a symptom of serious diseases, it is not usual. In adults this anomalous behavior of the nerve usually occurs after eating too much or too fast, drinking carbonated beverages or too dry foods, but can also occur if we laughed for a long time, we abuse alcohol or even if we suffer anxiety or nervous disorder. But in newborn infants it is much more common, why?

Why it is so frequent hiccups in the newborn baby
After the birth or the nervous system and the digestive system of our baby have reached their maturity, so if he has daily hiccup we must not alarmed. The probability increases if the child is premature, because this can get to suffer up to forty minutes per day. But what exactly triggers hiccups in the newborn?

Babies eat at each feeding large amounts of milk, so it is easy for the stomach compress the walls of the abdomen particularly the left side and stimulates the phrenic nerve. This stimulus will cause the spasmodic contractions of the diaphragm, but other situations may also favor its appearance, which one?

Causes of hiccups in the baby
There are rare cases that hiccup is caused by a chronic or serious condition. This involuntary contraction of the diaphragm that lasts between ten to thirty minutes can simply occur to fill the stomach, but will be favored if the child retains gases, swallowing air while eating or being exposed to colds, so we should take some precautions to avoid.

To prevent your baby accumulating gases ensures that do not swallow air with milk, so it must make sure it is well attached to the nipple or the bottle is properly sized and fits well to his mouth. Also you have to verify that the hole in the nipple let the right amount of liquid; to put it upside down and shake it slightly should leave only a few drops. Do not let the child suck quickly or forward. It is convenient to make a break if this happens, so you can slow its pace. You should take advantage of this break or change of breast to help expel gas, and never forget to do it when you stop giving him his meal. Remember also that, for the sake of his health, you should not give foods that are not suitable for his age.

Removing the hiccups in newborns
Your child does not feel pain or discomfort when he has hiccups, so you should try by all means to take it off, not with drugs. If ever the baby feels so uncomfortable to start crying, calm him down with massage on the tummy and back until it is passed.

You’ve heard of many home remedies, but know that some of them may harm the health of babies. Give a scare your son or cover her little nose to hold breath affect his health more than hiccups own, which usually takes just a few minutes but it is repeated throughout the day. Children under twelve months old should not eat honey and neither it is appropriate to give them sugar or lemon, so you should discard any of these remedies. Many recommend infusions to mitigate the gases, but if your child has not completed six months should not drink other liquids, only their milk. If the gases are causing too much discomfort it is best to tell your pediatrician.

Tips for parents
Did you know that the baby can have hiccup before birth? It is so normal in the newborn that not you should turn it into cause for uneasiness, because you can transmit it to your son. If he often gets hiccups when you feed him, put music to make it pleasant and relax. If your child takes a bottle, do not give it lying; the baby should be in the same position as when giving the breast. Don’t forget to fill out the nipple of food before placing it in the mouth to prevent swallowed air. It is equally important that before you clean you nostril so that you do not release the nipple or teat breathing and if you always keep your nose clean also will prevent the air between cold and with impurities.

When to consult a doctor
Although it appears several times a day and last about half an hour, if hiccups cause no discomfort to your child or prevents feed or sleep do not worry. You should discuss this with your doctor if it lasts more than three hours a day, if it’s as annoying as for the child to finish always crying or fever. Go with your child to the doctor or emergency room if there was no consultation when the hiccups persist for more than 24 hours, as it could be otitis, asthma or bronchitis, and in some isolated cases of meningitis or brain tumors.