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Top Tips on Burping Your Baby

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Babies eat by sucking and swallowing, so it's no surprise that sometimes they inhale air too! Burping your baby helps release any air he might have ingested along with his meal, which can give major relief to all kinds of fussing. Read on to learn more, including four burping methods.

1. Your Baby Might Burp a Lot

a mom burping her baby

Or not often at all! It just depends on your baby. Some newborns burp after every feeding, while others rarely will. Babies burp to release air and free up space in their tiny bellies. Most babies outgrow the need to be burped by four to six months.

2. Bottle-Fed Babies Tend to Burp More

a mom burping her baby

Babies need to burp because of swallowed air on the tummy, which affects bottle-fed babies more than breastfed babies. If your baby needs to burp frequently, try using a bottle specifically designed to better vent air out, which might help reduce the amount of air he's swallowing.

3. Signs Your Baby Needs to Burp

a mom burping her baby

You should try burping your baby after every feeding when your baby is brand-new and you're just getting to know what he needs. Generally, if your baby is fussy, seems uncomfortable, or cries after a feeding, burping her could provide serious relief.

You might want to pause halfway through a bottle or when you're switching breasts to see if your baby needs to burp. If your baby doesn't burp within a few minutes, continue with the feeding and try again when you're finished.

4. You'll Want to Protect Your Clothes

a mom burping her baby

With burps can often come spit-up! Before you burp your baby, cover your clothes with a small towel or burp cloth, and keep an extra one nearby to wipe your little one's face and clothes.

5. Burping Method: Baby's Chin at Your Shoulder

a mom burping her baby on her shoulder

It's the classic burping position: Hold your baby so his chin is at your shoulder. Support your baby's body and head with one hand and gently pat or rub his back with your other hand.

6. Burping Method: Baby's Stomach Against Your Shoulder

a mom burping her baby

Another position to try is to hold your baby higher, so his stomach is lightly pressed against your shoulder. That gentle pressure could help release some air. This method is better for older babies who have strong neck muscles.

Again, support his body with one hand while you pat or rub his back with your other hand.

7. Burping Method:  Across Your Lap

a mom burping her baby

You can also burp your baby by gently cradling her tummy-down against your arm or lap. Make sure you are supporting her head as you gently rub or pat her back.

8. Burping Method: Sitting Up

a mom burping her baby

Some babies burp well sitting up. Place your baby on your lap and carefully hold him upright with one hand. If your baby doesn't have control of his head yet, position your arm high across his chest to support both his head and body. Then gently rub or pat his back for a few minutes, or until he burps.

You’ve been dealing with Braxton-Hicks or “practice” contractions for a while now, but one day things are going to ramp up. That first real contraction is typically unmistakable. Try to relax and go with the flow—no amount of planning is going to make this adventure go exactly the way you expect. The good news? Baby is almost here!

 
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