Why Does Gripe Water Make Babies Sleepy: Possible Side Effects 

 June 4, 2022

By  maipham

Some parents have reported a possible bonus after giving gripe water to their babies is that their babies fall asleep after using gripe water. Funny enough is that when I was searching for gripe water and what it can do, there's nothing in the most famous and common gripe water that can put a baby to sleep.

So how does it happen? Why does gripe water make babies sleepy? 

What is gripe water?

Gripe water is a liquid that can contain herbs and sodium carbonate. Depending on the brand and the manufacturers, the herbs in gripe water can be fennel, ginger, chamomile, peppermint, etc.

What is in gripe water? Can it make babies sleepy?

Sleep Training With A Pacifier

The most common ingredients in gripe water are sodium bicarbonate, fennel, ginger, chamomile, dill, peppermint, vegetable glycerin, and citric acid.

While sodium bicarbonate neutralizes the stomach acid, which helps to reduce bloating and discomfort, other herbal ingredients like fennel, ginger, and chamomile help to prevent constipation, promote digestion, and relieve upset stomachs issues like nausea, vomiting, and heartburn.

Read more about ingredients in gripe water and what they can do here.

So back to the basic question: can gripe water make a baby sleepy?

Back in the old times, one of the most common ingredients in gripe water was alcohol. Now, this is no longer the case. But before when the gripe water still includes alcohol, this is the main reason that babies get drowsy and sleepy after using gripe water.

You don't want to give alcohol to your baby, even if it is included in a small amount in gripe water. Avoid gripe water containing alcohol at all costs.

Why does my baby fall asleep after using gripe water?

However, many parents reported that their babies fall asleep after using gripe water and they have checked the ingredients in their gripe water to make sure it doesn't include alcohol. So why does it happen?

The main reason why gripe water makes babies sleepy is that colicky babies, after feeling so tired and crying because of their upset stomachs, feel relaxed and relieved after using gripe water as it helps to relieve the discomfort. Another reason is that after they get exhausted from crying, they just need to sleep.

So even if you do not give gripe water to your baby, after crying for so long, your baby is more likely to fall asleep.

What can gripe water do?

In a nutshell, gripe water can help to reduce bloating, digest food, reduce heartburn, nausea, and vomiting, and prevent constipation. Each type of gripe water can have different effects due to the ingredients in it, but the main purpose and the most common effect of gripe water are to relieve pain from gas and hiccups.

Read more: What can gripe water help with? And when it is useless

How much gripe water can you give a baby?

what can gripe water help with

In general, you can give gripe water to a newborn from 3 to 6 doses per day. Each dose is from 0.5mil to 2.5mil for babies who are from 2 to 4 weeks old, 0.5mil to 5mil for babies from 6 to 10 weeks old, 0.5mil to 10mil for babies from 10 weeks to 6 months old, and 1mil to 10mil for babies from 6 months old.

Read more: How much gripe water can you give a newborn?

Other possible side effects of gripe water

If your baby is sensitive or you come from a family with an allergy history, make sure you watch out for other possible side effects after giving gripe water to your babies.

Similar to any other allergy symptoms, possible side effects of gripe water can be:

  • Stuffy nose, sneezing, itching, or runny nose 
  • Red, itchy, watery eyes. 
  • Red, itchy, dry skin
  • Hives or itchy welts. 
  • Rash.
  • Trouble breathing, coughing, out of breath, etc.

Make sure you watch out for those allergy symptoms. And call your doctors or an ambulance right away if you see those symptoms.

Wrapping it up: why does gripe water make baby sleepy?

Why does gripe water make babies sleepy

As you can see above, gripe water making a baby sleepy is just a coincidence. This happened all so your baby is getting too tired of crying and screaming, he will feel sleepy after burning out his energy.

However, make sure you check the ingredients in your gripe water to ensure that there is no alcohol in it. it all those circumstances, if you see that your baby gets sleepy every time after using gripe water and your baby is clearly not tired after witch hours or something, stop using gripe water and consult your doctor. You don’t want to cause an unhealthy behavior to your baby using gripe water.


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