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What if My Baby Won’t Burp After Feeding?

What if My Baby Won't Burp After Feeding

Don’t worry! It’s pretty common for babies not to burp after feeding. 

But trapped air in a baby’s stomach can cause discomfort. Burping helps eliminate the excess air or gassiness, making the baby feel better.

There are three ways you can do to help your baby burp:

  • Over-The-Shoulder Burping
  • Sitting-Up-On-Your-Lap Burping
  • Facedown-On-Your-Lap Burping

What if you’ve tried all these things, and your baby still won’t burp? Read through, as I’ll share all the helpful information you need in this article (and more)!

NOTE: If they show vomiting or pain, it is best to call your doctor.

What Do I Do if My Baby Won’t Burp After Feeding?

Many babies swallow air while they’re eating. This can cause them to become gassy and uncomfortable.

Try burping them upright after each feeding. 

You can do this by walking around with them while gently massaging their backs. This can help to move the gas through their digestive system.

Try the different over-the-shoulder, sitting-up-on-your-lap, or facedown-on-your-lap burping positions.

Some parents believe that vitamin D drops can aid in making babies burp. However, Vitamin D drops primarily aim to promote strong and healthy infant bones.

So don’t fret if your baby doesn’t burp — usually, it’s nothing to worry about. Just watch for any signs of pain and consult your pediatrician if needed.

What Happens if My Baby Doesn’t Burp?

What Happens if My Baby Doesn't Burp?

If your baby doesn’t burp, it can be perfectly normal and not cause concern. However, trapped gas may lead to discomfort. 

Here are some of the things that can happen if your baby doesn’t burp:

  • Gas pain – swallowed air can lead to stomach and intestinal gas. This causes pain, bloating, and fussiness.
  • Reflux – a gas build-up can push against the lower esophageal sphincter. This leads to reflux, characterized by heartburn, vomiting, and coughing.
  • Colic – a condition causing prolonged crying in babies. It can be due to gas, food allergies, and overstimulation (being overwhelmed by their environment). 

It’s important for parents to watch for these and take appropriate measures if needed.

How Can I Burp My Baby?

How Can I Burp My Baby?

Burping your baby is a skill that can bring both relief and joy to your baby. So prepare your burp cloths, a cozy and comfortable spot, and an extra dose of patience.  

Here are three tried-and-true burping techniques recommended by moms and pediatricians.

1. Over-The-Shoulder Burping

This is the most common way moms practice burping a baby. 

To do this, place your baby across your shoulder with their head resting on your chest. Use one hand to support your baby’s head and neck. 

The other hand should delicately rub or pat their back.

You can also walk around while burping your baby, which can help move the air bubbles out of their stomach.

2. Sitting-Up-On-Your-Lap Burping

This method is a good option for babies getting a little older and having better head control. 

To do this, sit your baby on your lap. Let them face away from you. Position one hand on the baby’s chest and the other on the back for effective burping.

Gently rub or pat their back, and you may also want to gently rock them back and forth.

You can conveniently burp your baby in any setting — whether sitting in a chair, on the couch, or in bed.

3. Facedown-On-Your-Lap Burping

This method is less common than the other two, but it can be helpful for babies who have a lot of gas. 

To do this, lay your baby face down across your lap. Support their chest with one hand and their head with the other hand. 

Gently rub or pat their back. 

This position can apply gentle pressure to the abdomen. Be careful not to press too hard on their stomach, and stop burping them if they start to cry or fuss.

How Can I Burp My Newborn?

How Can I Burp My Newborn?

Now this is a tricky question. 

Burping is an essential aspect of feeding a baby, but it may vary slightly for newborns compared to older babies.

Newborns swallow more air than older babies, so it’s important to burp them more often. 

The most applicable burping technique for newborns is over-the-shoulder burping. 

This is because it is the easiest and safest way to burp a newborn. Additionally, it lets you monitor your baby and ensure their safety by preventing choking.

What if My Baby Still Doesn’t Burp?

What if My Baby Still Doesn't Burp?

Not burping after feeding is not necessarily a bad thing for babies. In fact, some babies do not burp at all, and they are perfectly healthy. 

Some babies are simply better at getting rid of gas than others. They may be able to pass it through their bowels or burp it up without any help from you.

Other babies may not swallow as much air when they drink or eat. Breastfed babies typically ingest less air than bottle-fed babies. This reduces the need for frequent burping. 

Many parents I’ve known also consider probiotics for smooth digestion for their babies. 

Some moms take preventive measures to reduce gassiness by focusing on the choice of baby bottles and formula preparation. 
The secret lies in finding the right bottle and formula combination that suits your baby’s needs.

Frequently Asked Questions

Before I wrap up everything you need to know about why babies don’t burp after feeding, let’s address some questions to help you be more informed. 

Here are three FAQs I find most relevant:

When Can I Stop Burping My Baby?

Babies typically outgrow the need for burping by 4-6 months of age.

As your baby grows, they will naturally develop stronger neck and digestive muscles. This makes it easier for them to handle any trapped air. 

However, some babies may need to be burped for longer, especially if they are gassy or have reflux. 

The ideal time to stop burping your baby varies from child to child. 

If unsure about whether your baby still requires burping, consult your pediatrician for guidance.

What Do I Do if My Baby Really Doesn’t Burp?

Sometimes, despite our best efforts, those burps want to play hide-and-seek.

If your baby is not burping, don’t force them. Stop burping them and try to comfort them in another way. 

Some parents try using coconut oil as a natural remedy for gasses in babies. Yet, I’d still recommend asking your doctor about this. 

Also, note that spit-up is a common occurrence in babies, and it often happens after feeding or burping. 

Spit-up is usually not a cause for concern. Consult your doctor if excessive spit-up or additional symptoms like vomiting, diarrhea, or fever occur.

Should I Try to Burp My Baby if They Fall Asleep During Feeding?

Try burping your baby for a few minutes before putting them back to sleep, even if they’ve fallen asleep during feeding. 

Here are quick tips for burping your baby if they fall asleep:

  1. Gently wake your baby up.
  2. Hold your baby upright and gently pat or rub their back.
  3. Alternatively, sit your baby on your lap and gently bounce them up and down.
  4. If your baby stays asleep after burping, you can let them continue sleeping.

However, remember that not all babies burp — independently or with a parent’s assistance.

Conclusion

Get more familiar with the different burping positions like over-the-shoulder, sitting-up-on-your-lap, or facedown-on-your-lap.

While most babies will burp naturally, some may require assistance. Watch for signs of discomfort but don’t stress if your baby doesn’t burp every time. 

I hope these tips help you to burp your baby and make them feel more comfortable.

Josie Mariano
Josie Mariano

Hello, my name is Josie Mariano, and I’m proud to say I’m a soon-to-be mom.
Although my partner and I are still waiting for our firstborn to arrive, we’re already doing whatever it takes to prepare for our baby’s needs.
I’ve been joining a lot of parenting forums and asking my doctors for advice on how to prepare for my baby. They’ve all been very informative and I was able to spot the areas I still need to work on.
At the same time, I also rely on my mom for tips on what to do during my pregnancy journey.
With everything that I’ve learned so far, I’d like to share these experiences to fellow parents and soon-to-be parents!