What It Really Means When Your Baby Is Gassy

Gas is a normal function of the human body and a natural part of the digestive process. However, just as some people can produce more gas than others, babies tend to be gassier than adults (via Parents). In fact, newborn babies can produce and expel more gas than a full-grown man. Since babies' digestive systems are new and immature, however, passing gas isn't always easy. Gas that doesn't pass and remains trapped in the gastrointestinal tract can cause discomfort and bloat for the baby.

How can you tell if your baby is gassy and uncomfortable? Although newborn babies can't exactly communicate their discomfort verbally, they may try to signal their gassiness through body language. For instance, your baby might be gassy if they keep squirming around and pulling their legs up. "If your baby seems much better after passing gas, then that's a telltale sign that the problem was gas," Dr. Jennifer Shu, an Atlanta-based pediatrician, told Parents.

How to relieve your baby's gas

If your suspicions are confirmed and your baby is gassy, you can try to help them relieve their gas and reduce their discomfort by placing them on their stomach (via Healthline). You can also lay them on their back and move their legs around like they're riding a bicycle. These techniques should help them move the gas out of their bodies.

Another useful technique is known as the football hold. This involves holding your baby like a football, placing them face down across your arm. The side of their face be should resting in your hand, while their legs straddle either side of your elbow. This puts added pressure on the stomach, which may make it easier to pass gas.

However, if none of these techniques work, you may need to give your baby gas drops — a pediatrician-recommended medication made of simethicone that can help relieve gas and bloating.