All babies swallow some air when they drink milk. The air collects in the stomach, causing the child to feel uncomfortably full even before he has finished feeding.
Excessive crying, sucking too rapidly during feeding or sucking in air when the bottle is empty or sucking air when milk does not fill the teat completely during feeding will also cause excessive air in the baby's stomach.
Whether you are breastfeeding or bottle-feeding your baby, you should burp him.
Burping helps to reduce the discomfort your baby feels after his feed as air is expelled from his stomach. Your child will be able to take in the amount of milk he requires. Most important of all, a comfortable baby is a happy baby and will be able to play and rest better.
It is common for newborns to regurgitate (throw out predigested milk) small amounts of their feeds. This happens when a baby who is hungry has taken in too much air. Burping will help to release the air from his stomach.
Generally, a breastfed baby swallows less air than a bottle-fed baby because the baby's mouth tends to latch onto the mother's nipple fully. Here, the baby gets a constant flow of milk as he sucks at his own pace till he is satisfied.
To burp your baby, you may wish to adopt any of the following positions:
To avoid any discomfort to your baby, burp him during a feed and at the end of the feed. If he cries excessively, try to burp him before the feed so that he will be able to take his feed well.