Burping is the most important aspect of baby care, that needs to be done after each feed. While sucking milk newborns often gulp in air that eventually becomes the reason behind gassiness and milk spitting.
Babies who are formula fed are more prone to swallowing air; hence need burping more than the breast fed babies. Needless to say, each parent has his own way of burping the baby. Here is a step wise, well guided process of burping that needs to be followed after each baby meal.
When to Burp
Notice your baby’s need to burp while feeding. If the baby is gulping the milk too fast and is restless, it means that you need to discontinue the feeding and make her burp immediately. While breast feeding it is important to burp while taking a break with every change of breast. Formula fed babies should be burped after every second ounce of formula intake.
How to Burp
The ideal position
The first step is to firm up your position before you pick the baby to burp. Either sit or stand in a straight back position. A slouch or a half lying position would not allow you to burp the baby effectively, resulting in a spit up or milk vomit.
Now hold the baby in your arms with her stomach resting lightly on your chest and baby’s head resting on your shoulders. Make sure that the infant’s stomach is not pressed as it might propel the milk outside even before burping. Hold the baby with one hand firmly and use the other hand for the burping. If the baby is squirming or wriggling too much, it is necessary to settle her first before burping.
Next step is to pat your hand lightly and in a gentle manner on your baby’s back and listen carefully to the burping sound. Slowly move your hand from the baby’s upper back to the lower part of your spine at least 5 to 6 times. This would help the food or the milk move downwards, giving relief to the baby and letting out the air with a burp.
Lie Down Position
Another good way to burp the baby is by making her lie down on your lap with her stomach touching your thighs. Without pressing the tummy caress gently on the back to let out the burp and the air trapped inside.
You can also burp the baby in a sitting position by making her sit on your lap. Hold the baby firmly to support the head by placing a hand on her chest near the chin. Keep the baby’s back straight and using your other hand’s gentle movements stroke the baby’s back from upwards to downwards or pat lightly on the back, whichever way suits the baby.
Tips and Precautions
Some babies take a longer time to burp when compared to other babies. Try changing position after a while when burping. Sometimes a change in position induces a quick burp and the baby is relieved immediately. While patting the back make sure you do very gently. Loud or harsh pas or strokes may result in a vomit or spit up instantly.
A lot of babies spit up milk while burping. Make sure to keep a clean cloth or a towel handy on your shoulders or lap to avoid the mess while burping.