How do I Burp my Baby? Our tips for the most feel-good moment of your day.

By Babe | Illustration by Ana Hard

Burping a baby can be a truly joyful experience. The moment they let out that beautiful, oh, so sweet belch is like winning the feeding lottery. On the flip side, there’s literally nothing worse than trying to help a babe who just can’t let one out. In case you didn’t know, burping helps babe get rid of some of the air they tend to swallow during feeding. Not being burped often enough and swallowing too much air can make a baby spit up, or appear cranky or gassy. Peep below for our tips on burping your baby like a pro.

Tips For Burping Babe

  • First thing’s first. Contrary to popular belief, you don’t want to smack your baby’s back when burping, but rather gentle patting on your baby’s back or even firmly circling their back with a flat palm should do the trick. Also, you never quite know what’s going to come out of your baby – whether a dry or wet burp – so always have a cloth nearby. (It’s called burp cloth for a reason!)
  • Sit upright and, depending on their age, hold your baby against your chest or sitting up on your lap. Your baby’s chin should rest on your shoulder as you support the baby with one hand. With the other hand, gently pat your baby’s back in a circular motion. If on your lap, rest the bottom of your hand on your baby’s chest. Use the other hand to rub your baby’s back.
  • If your baby seems fussy while feeding, stop and try to burp your baby, and then begin feeding again. Try burping your baby every two to three ounces if you bottle-feed and each time you switch breasts if your nursing.
  • If your baby doesn’t burp after a few minutes, change their position and try burping for another few minutes before feeding again. Always burp your baby when feeding time is over.
  • To help prevent the milk from coming back up, keep your baby upright after feeding for 10 to 15 minutes, or longer if your baby spits up. But if babe spits up, do not worry. It’s totes normal.

Babies with colic (three or more hours a day of continued crying) might have gas from swallowing too much air during crying spells, which can make the baby even more uncomfortable. If you think your baby seems particularly uncomfortable, contact your pediatrician or healthcare provider.