Simethicone – Is It Safe For Your Baby?

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Published: 24th November 2010
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If your baby’s pediatrician has prescribed a medication for your baby’s gas, you may be wondering what’s in it and is it okay for my baby. All moms and dads want to do what’s best for their baby, and knowing what medications are and how they may affect their baby is on the top of the list of concerns. In drops for gas, Simethicone is the active ingredient.

Simethicone, an oral, anti-foaming agent, is used to reduce gas bubbles, so that pressure in the belly caused by gas can be relieved. However, Simethicone does not decrease the production of gas in the intestines, but increases the rate gas exits the body. With lots of little gas bubbles in the intestines it’s often hard for anyone, but especially a newborn, to pass gas and relieve pressure. Simethicone encourages small bubbles to combine with other bubbles and form large bubbles, or one bubble which is easier for baby to pass. Once the baby has passed the gas, the pressure is relieved and baby feels much better.

Simethicone is commonly prescribed or recommended for gassy babies as it is not absorbed by the body and therefore is considered relatively safe. Obviously, newborns are not able to communicate the presence of side effects, but ones that have been reported by adults using this medication include: nausea, stomach upset, dry mouth, drowsiness, dizziness, or constipation. You may be able to notice some of these side effects like constipation in your baby, but most will go unnoticed. If you become concerned about your baby’s behavior after giving this medication, call your pediatrician.

Many parents give Simethicone to colicky babies in hopes of calming the baby. Current theories are that colic is not a result of gas in the baby; therefore, Simethicone will not generally help. Colic is defined as unexplained crying for extended periods of time, 3 hours a day, 3 days a week for 3 weeks. Therefore, you may want to save your money and use other techniques like keeping baby in motion to calm your baby during colicky periods.

Simethicone generally works well relieving pain caused by gas in your newborn, but like any medication, it should not be overused. You can also reduce gas by properly burping baby during and after feedings, and if breastfeeding, examining your diet. You can, however, feel comfortable using products with Simethicone for your baby.

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