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How to Burp a Sleeping Baby?

Burping baby

Some babies tend to get gassier than others. Still, most of them need burping sometimes. Compared to older kids, babies need to be burped more because their food is liquid, and they tend to gulp a lot of air while drinking.

Burping your baby is always important, no matter if the baby is sleeping or not. They can often fall asleep while eating, and you will need to figure out how to burp your sleeping baby. If you skip this step, your baby might wake up in pain because of the trapped gas. Bear in mind that not all babies burp with or without help, and this article will help you with how to make the burping process easier.

How to make your sleeping baby burp?

Babies tend to fall asleep while they have filled their tummy with yummy juices. This is most common to happen at night when the baby is sleep deprived. No matter how cute and happy the baby looks, it needs to be burped.

The only difference between burping a sleeping and awake baby is that with the asleep baby you will need to move slower.

The most common position people use to burp the baby is holding it upright on the knee while they support the baby’s head and cradle their chin. With the help of gravity and the baby’s weight the air will get out, but it will possibly wake up a sleeping baby.

To do the burping your baby needs to be slightly upright and you will be able to put pressure on its tummy.

Below you will find some positions you can use to burp a sleeping baby:

1. Burp the baby mid-feeding

When sleepy, babies tend to overdo it with feeding and don’t realize that they need to take a break to burp. This is where you step in and burp your baby mid-feeding. The burp will open more room for food.

2. Burp the baby by holding it on your shoulder

If the baby is being fed in a semi-upright position, you could move the baby all the way upright on your shoulder. The baby is likely to like this position and keep on sleeping while there is pressure on its tummy which will help to release the gas.

3. Burp by holding the baby lower onto your chest

Just like with the position above, you can lift the baby semi-upright or even fully upright and keep the baby on your chest, while you sit on your couch. Babies tend to curl up their legs in the so-called frog position and you can wait for their burp while you support their head.

4. The “sloth hold” or rocking the baby in your arms

After you have finished feeding the baby, take him/her and turn them at 45 degrees placing their tummy on your forearm. The baby’s head needs to be supported in the crook of the elbow, leaving the legs to dangle on the sides of your arm. This way there will be pressure on their tummy and you also pat the baby’s back to help them burp. This can be done either standing or sitting.

5. Burp by holding the baby onto your knees

If you are sitting while you feed the baby, you can move him/her to a laying position on his/her tummy directly on your knees. Gently move your legs to make a rocking movement and also pat their back to provoke the burp.

How important is it for the baby to burp?

One of the many everyday jobs that a parent needs to with their baby is burping. Unlike older kids and adults, babies need a little help when it comes to burping. This is because they have almost no control over how their body is positioned.

It won’t be hard to figure out if your baby will need to be burped every time they eat or the baby does not need burping. If you notice that the baby has a lot of gas trapped in their body or tends to spit-up then you should consult with a doctor.

If your baby is gassy but you simply can’t make him/her burp, try to relax and put your focus on making the baby feel comfortable. There is a study that says burping won’t play a major role in decreasing indigestion.

Even if your baby tends to burp a lot during day time, you should also try to make him/her burp after they have been fed every nighttime. Try to make your baby burp after nighttime feeding, because it will lead to a more peaceful night of sleep for both of you.

There are some medicines in the pharmacies that could help you with burping, but you need to consult your doctor before you try to use some of them as they might have some dangerous ingredients. If your baby is very gassy and fussy or even tends to spit up a lot, always consult your doctor to help you overcome this issue. Babies do tend to grow out of this issue after some months.

Don’t worry about your baby choking on the spit-up, because that seldom happens. Still, it is important to not overfeed the baby and always try to make him/her burp after every meal if you see that gives them some benefit.


So, how long will it take you to make your baby burp?

It will take your baby 1-2 minutes to burp. Sometimes your baby will burp as soon as you lift him/her upright, and other times you will need to wait sometime and help your little one to let all those gases out by putting little pressure on the tummy.

Another good method is to teach your baby to fall asleep in the crib rather than while you are feeding them. The minute you notice your baby is getting sleepy while eating, stop the process and get to the burping part and after that, you can put them in their crib. It is best to start this process as soon as possible so that the baby will learn this habit.

Babies with bad reflux will need as much as 30 minutes to get the burp out no matter what time of the day you feed them.

The question is what if the baby doesn’t burp?

When you see your baby getting sleepy, try to burp them before you go and lay them down. Babies tend to eat slower at nighttime therefore swallowing less air so you might not even need to burp them.

A baby that wakes up crying might need some soothing, diaper change, or you will need to feed them but remember to burp them after.

What can cause your baby to get gassy?

There is this belief that bottle-fed babies tend to get gassier but this still has not been proven. It is easier for babies to gulp more air while eating from a bottle, but even breast-fed babies are known to get very gassy.

Sometimes the food that the mother eats can cause her breastfed baby to get gassy, therefore it will take her a while to figure out which foods to avoid. 

Burping is one of the simplest but important ways to make your baby feel comfortable. Don’t let your sleeping baby keep you from trying to burp them, it will make his sleep much more comfortable and peaceful.

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