Baby Basics: How To Burp Your Baby

Does your baby seem fussy or irritable during or after feeding? It’s likely because he/she has swallowed some air along with the milk, causing them to feel gassy and uncomfortable. Burping your baby after a feeding is an important step that can help relieve that discomfort and make them feel better. It helps release air trapped in your baby’s stomach during feeding, preventing discomfort and reducing the likelihood of spit-up or colic. Learning the proper burping techniques and when to burp your baby can help keep them happy and comfortable.

Why Do I Need to Burp My Baby?

Babies have underdeveloped digestive systems, so they often have difficulty releasing gas on their own without assistance. The air they swallow while breastfeeding or bottle-feeding collects in their tiny stomachs and intestines, causing pain, fussiness, and even spit-ups or vomiting if left alone. Burping helps your baby expel that excess air they've swallowed so they feel better.

Signs Your Baby Needs to Burp

You don't necessarily have to burp your baby after every feeding, but watch for these cues that your little one needs some help relieving some gas:

  • Fussing or crying while feeding
  • Pulling off the breast/bottle and arching their back
  • Gulping or noisy swallows while drinking
  • Spitting up frequently

If you notice any of these signs, try burping your baby to see if it provides some relief before continuing the feeding.

How to Burp Your Baby

  • Pick an upright burping position and place your baby upright against your chest before their next feeding. Make sure to support their head while holding them. Place a soft burp cloth under their chin.
  • Pat or gently rub your baby's upper back between their shoulder blades. You can also gently massage in circular motions around their back. Adjust pressure and location until you find what works to help them release gas.
  • Wait patiently while patting, allowing them time to work up a good burp. Persistence here pays off! Offer cuddles and soothing if they start to fuss while waiting.
  • Try giving a light press between the shoulder blades with a flat palm if gentle patting isn't working. This added pressure sometimes helps encourage burps.
  • Switch burping positions and keep trying if one isn't working. Some positions work better for some babies.
  • When you hear that big, satisfying burp, smile and praise your baby! This positive reinforcement might help them associate burping with feeling better.

How to Burp Your Baby

When and How Often to Burp

Most babies need to be burped during a feeding when they naturally pause or rest, typically halfway through or after a feeding. Watch baby’s cues over the bottle or breast to see when they lose interest for a short break.

If your baby seems gassy or uncomfortable, you may need to stop more frequently to burp, especially at younger ages. Pacing the feeding can also help reduce excess swallowed air.

A good rule of thumb for burping your baby:

  • After every 2-5 minutes of feeding
  • After switching breasts
  • Anytime they pull off or fuss during a feeding

You’ll quickly learn your baby’s routine and when they need those good burps!

Some Essential Tips and Tricks

Try these handy tips for better burping success:

  • Keep sessions upbeat, talk, sing or distract baby during burping which can comfort them
  • Exaggerate your own burps; babies are often curious about imitations
  • Massage baby’s tummy lightly in clockwise circles if very gassy
  •  Stop feeding immediately if the baby begins coughing or choking



Learning to burp your little one does take some delicacy and patience. Stay calm, consistent, and remember it does get easier over time as your baby develops stronger digestive functioning. Stick to the routine of burping during and after each feeding session.

If you try numerous burping techniques and your baby’s symptoms persist or worsen, do talk to your paediatrician to address any underlying feeding or gastrointestinal issues. But with lots of practice, you and the baby will be champion burpers!

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1.Why is burping my baby important?

Ans. Burping helps release trapped air in your baby's stomach, preventing discomfort and reducing the likelihood of spit-up or colic.

2. How do I know if my baby needs to burp?

Ans. Look out for signs such as fussiness or crying during feeding, pulling off the breast or bottle, gulping or noisy swallows, and frequent spitting up. These cues indicate your baby may need help relieving gas.

3. What are some effective burping techniques?

Ans. Choose an upright position, support your baby's head, and gently pat or rub their upper back between the shoulder blades.

4. When should I burp my baby?

Ans. Most babies need to be burped during a feeding, typically halfway through or after a feeding when they naturally pause or rest.

5. What are some tips for successful burping?

Ans. Keep the burping session upbeat by talking, singing, or distracting your baby. Exaggerating your own burps can also capture their interest. Additionally, lightly massaging your baby's tummy in clockwise circles can help relieve gas.

6. What should I do if my baby coughs or chokes during feeding?

Ans. Stop feeding immediately if your baby begins coughing or choking. This could indicate a more serious issue that requires attention. Consult with your pediatrician if symptoms persist or worsen.

7. What if my baby's symptoms persist despite burping?

Ans. If you've tried numerous burping techniques and your baby's symptoms persist or worsen, consult with your pediatrician. 

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