Mr Stephen Turreh, a pharmacist at the Ashaiman Municipal Hospital, has cautioned mothers against giving medications to babies when they experience colic.
Mr Turreh said colic was not a health condition, explaining that it occurred when babies were improperly attached to the breast during breastfeeding.
Speaking to the Ghana News Agency (GNA) in an interview, he said improper breastfeeding resulted in the baby swallowing air, which goes to bloat their stomach.
He said that because it was difficult for the air to dissolve in the stomach of babies, they became uncomfortable and fussy, leading to colics.
He stressed that it was very important for mothers to always burp babies right after feeding them to prevent the build-up of air in their stomachs.
“It’s a natural thing; it’s not like the baby is sick or something, and in our traditional setting, we are advised to put the baby on the shoulder and tap the back gently so, the baby can burp,” he said.
He added that “personally, I don’t see the role medicine plays in that; of course, people prescribe them; there are quite a number now; I personally would not want a baby to be medicated unnecessarily.”
The pharmacist explained that colic occurrence is usually reduced around six months of age when babies start complementary feeding, as the continuous taking of liquid contributes to colics.
He added that medical attention was only needed if the colic was persistent, and all measures taken to make the baby comfortable had proven futile.
Mr. Turreh noted that some babies might be lactose intolerant and react to some formulas, which was difficult to know, and therefore emphasised that exclusive breastfeeding was the best.
He, however, said mothers who were feeding babies formula milk due to some medical issues must make a conscious effort to get the right feed for their babies.
He also warned against the continuous changing of formula for babies, as most of them became used to what was introduced to them, advising that babies with lactose intolerance should not be given formula at all.
Mr Turreh said a child’s health was important and must be taken care of with all seriousness.