Gripe Water for Infants: Is It Really Effective?

For: 0-24 months | Author: Mansha Ali | Medically reviewed by: Dr. Pallavi Bapat
Share this blog
Is gripe water good for babies

As a parent, soothing a fussy and colicky baby can be an exhausting and challenging task. During the monsoon season, babies tend to suffer from several infections – what with the constant downpours and lack of sunlight. As a result, it is pretty common for infants and toddlers to fall sick. 

Gas, stomachache, and colic are some of the symptoms that babies face all year round, but especially in monsoon. To ease their discomfort, many parents turn to gripe water as a traditional remedy. Gripe water has been used for generations as a natural solution to alleviate infant colic, gas, and general fussiness. But how effective is gripe water? Is it safe for your baby?

In this blog, we’ll delve into what gripe water is, its ingredients, how it’s used, and whether it actually works to provide relief for infants.


What is Gripe Water?

Gripe water is an over-the-counter, non-prescription herbal remedy, commonly found in liquid form. It typically consists of a combination of different herbs, such as fennel, ginger, chamomile, and sodium bicarbonate (baking soda). These ingredients are believed to have soothing properties that can help ease digestive discomfort in infants.


The Origins of Gripe Water

Gripe water has a rich history dating back to the 19th century when it was first formulated by English pharmacist William Woodward. Originally, gripe water contained alcohol and sugar, but modern versions have eliminated these components to make it safer for infants.


How is Gripe Water Used?

Gripe water is usually administered orally to infants, either directly from a dropper or mixed with water or formula. The recommended dosage and frequency vary depending on the product and the age of the baby. It is essential to follow the manufacturer’s instructions and consult with a pediatrician before giving any new product to your baby.


The Proposed Benefits of Gripe Water

It is claimed that the herbal ingredients in gripe water provide several potential benefits for infants such as:

  • Relief from Colic: Colic is a condition characterized by excessive crying and fussiness in otherwise healthy babies. Gripe water is often marketed as a remedy for colic, promising to soothe and calm a colicky baby.
  • Reduction of Gas and Bloating: The presence of herbs like fennel and ginger in gripe water is believed to aid in reducing gas and bloating, which can be uncomfortable for infants.
  • Relaxation and Calming: Chamomile, a common ingredient in gripe water, is known for its calming properties, potentially helping babies to relax and sleep better.


Does Gripe Water Actually Work?

The effectiveness of gripe water remains a subject of debate among healthcare professionals. While some parents swear by its efficacy, scientific evidence supporting its benefits is limited and inconclusive.

Limited Clinical Studies: There is a lack of robust clinical trials and research on the effectiveness of gripe water specifically. Most available studies have focused on individual herbal ingredients present in gripe water, rather than the combination itself.

Placebo Effect: Some researchers argue that any perceived improvements in infants’ behavior after administering gripe water might be due to the placebo effect or natural resolution of colic over time.

Individual Variations: Babies’ reactions to gripe water may vary significantly due to differences in their digestive systems and sensitivities to certain herbs.


Safety Concerns

While gripe water is generally considered safe for most infants, there are a few safety considerations to keep in mind:

Age and Ingredients: Some gripe water products may not be suitable for very young infants, and certain herbal ingredients could cause allergic reactions or other adverse effects.

Contamination Risk: Always purchase gripe water from reputable sources to avoid potential contamination or improper formulation.


Over to you

In conclusion, although gripe water has a long-standing history as a traditional remedy to ease digestive discomfort in infants, it is not scientifically proven. While some parents find it helpful in soothing their baby’s colic and fussiness, scientific evidence supporting its effectiveness remains limited. 

As with any herbal remedy, it is essential to consult with a pediatrician before using gripe water and monitor your baby’s reaction closely. While gripe water might provide some comfort for your baby, it is essential to remember that each child is unique, and what works for one may not work for another. Always prioritize your baby’s well-being and consult with a healthcare professional for the best advice and guidance.

For more such useful tips and articles, download the BabyVerse app – a parenting app curated by experts for all your baby needs. 

Have you given gripe water to your baby? Did it prove beneficial in relieving your baby’s symptoms?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


This is how your baby develops in the fourth trimester!

As a new parent, you might have heard the term “fourth trimester” quite a lot. But what is it? The “fourth trimester” is the term used to describe the first few months of your baby’s life. The period when your little bundle of joy is transitioning from the womb to the outside world. As a […]
Spit ups

Spit-ups—and baby!

In this article: What causes babies to spit up? What could be the possible reason for your baby’s spit ups? What is the difference between vomiting and spitting up? How often should you feed your baby when they spit up? How to breastfeed your baby when they spit up? Tips to reduce baby spit ups. […]