Children suffering from gas pain are not happy campers. Watching your child experience the cramping and discomfort gas can cause isn't easy. You can try numerous safe treatments to help your child experience relief from gas. Choose from natural home remedies or over-the-counter medications to help your child get relief. If your child experiences excessive or frequent gas, consider taking a trip to the doctor to rule out food allergies or illness as the cause.
Try giving your child a hot drink to sip when she is suffering from gas pains. Hot tea made from peppermint leaves can sooth a crampy stomach, according to nutritionist Kymythy Schultze. Dr. Kevin Ferentz, a professor of family medicine at the University of Maryland, says giving your child a hot beverage to drink when she's experiencing gas pains can cause the gas in her stomach to expand. This expansion may cause more discomfort at first, but the hot liquid will help the gas escape and bring relief.
If your infant is experiencing gas pains and is too young to drink hot beverages, Ferentz says you can put a hot water bottle wrapped in a towel on your baby's abdomen for 10 to 15 minutes, making sure the bottle is not hot enough to burn your child.
To help a child suffering from excessive gas or gas pain, encourage him to exercise. Moving his body can help him expel uncomfortable trapped gas. The exercise doesn't have to be intensive—a walk after a meal can help release and prevent gas, according to Dr. George Sterne, a professor of pediatrics at Tulane University. If your child tends to lie on the couch after eating, encourage him to get up and find a more active after-dinner activity to help with gas.
Pediatrician Bob Sears recommends trying stomach massage to help your child pass uncomfortable gas. According to Sears, you can rub your infant or older child's stomach gently to help get gas moving. Schultze agrees and suggests rubbing your child's stomach in counter-clockwise circles to release trapped gas.
Sometimes it's easier to prevent gas than to relieve it. Sterne recommends treating your child's food with natural food enzymes to keep her from developing gas when eating. You can find many over-the-counter food enzymes designed to prevent gas at any drugstore. Sterne suggests putting a few drops of these enzymes on your child's meal before she eats. According to Schultze, papaya and pineapple contain large amounts of anti-gas enzymes. Eating papaya or pineapple with a meal may help your child experience a reduction in gas.
Simethicone is an over-the-counter medicine used to reduce bloating and treat trapped, painful gas. According to Ferentz, simethicone can bring your child relief from gas pains by breaking large gas bubbles into smaller bubbles that are easier to pass. Simethicone is available in children and infant formulations, according to Sears, and may be safely given to children of all ages by following the instructions on the package.