As probably every parent on the planet knows, a gassy baby is a very, very unhappy baby. And unfortunately, there's very little you can do to make them feel better. Sure, you can try bicycling her little legs, massaging her tummy, carrying her around for hours on end patting her back while she shrieks inconsolably, but none of these methods result in more frustration (for you) than anything else. Now, though, parents finally have a new option: Fridababy's Windi The Gasspasser is an ingenious (and, okay, slightly gross) device designed to "instantly free stubborn gas stuck in baby's pipes," according to the Fridababy website. But how does the Windi work?
If you're one of the many fans of Fridababy's super popular Snotsucker, which allows parents to suck the snot out of their baby's nose with a tube, you might be having a disturbing vision of what freeing that stubborn gas entails, exactly. But rest assured, there's no tube going straight from your baby's bum to your mouth. Instead, the Windi is a tube that releases gas straight into the air — and with some pretty entertaining sound effects to boot (or perhaps "to poot" would be a more appropriate term).
The basic premise and corresponding execution are both pretty simple (as you'll see illustrated in the unforgettable videos below): Give your baby a pre-Windi belly rub, lubricate and insert the tube (which thankfully comes with a stopper that prevents you from going too far), and wait for the telltale whistling sound. Fridababy recommends using the disposable product no more than three times per day, with a package of 10 selling for about $15 on Amazon. Otherwise, the company promises that it's completely safe when used properly. Brilliant? Barf-inducing? If it gets your baby to stop crying, who cares?
And if the Amazon reviews are any indication, the Windi does indeed get a lot of people's babies to stop crying.
"I swear these things saved us hours of sleep when out baby was an infant. They work! The little whistle that comes out is adorable, too. We call them baby butt whistles," wrote one reviewer.
"Instant relief! We used these quite often during baby's first 3 months and they probably saved my sanity," agreed another. Another thing most reviewers seem to agree on? The importance of always having a diaper under your child when you use the Windi, as oftentimes you might be "freeing" a bit more than you were more expecting (which will probably make your baby feel better, too).
In order to truly get a sense of how this crafty contraption functions, though, you really have to see (and hear) it in action. Step 1, as this video demonstrates, is as easy as can be — and not the least bit ew-inducing, either:
This rub-down is meant to get things moving in the belly, of course, and babies will love their mini spa experience. This next bit is definitely less spa-like, and more, er, clinical?
So, basically the same thing you'd do with a rectal thermometer. No big whoop. It's not until this next video that things start getting real:
Yup, still going:
Is it just me, or is that baby being a super good sport about the whole thing? I can make out some slightly fussy sounds, but certainly not the level of protest one might expect from such an intervention. And then, at last, the big payoff:
Oddly satisfying, right? (Kind of like those pimple-popping videos, but not nearly as disgusting.) All in all, it seems like a relatively painless affair — whereas gas itself can actually be quite painful for your baby. It's normal and common, generally hitting its peak between the ages of 4 to 12 weeks old, as Katherine O’Connor, M.D., attending physician in the Division of Pediatric Hospital Medicine at the Children’s Hospital at Montefiore in New York City, told The Bump. But it can still make your baby miserable, and passing that gas should make all the difference, Dr. O'Connor explained.
“If you get a few burps out of baby or do something else to move things along, most babies are relieved of the symptoms and will stop crying,” she said.
Falling under the category of "do something else to move things along," of course, is the Windi. (Ask your pediatrician if you have any concerns about this product being right for your baby, as with any product.) Hopefully, she'll be "whistling" a happier tune in no time!
Check out Romper's new video series, Bearing The Motherload, where disagreeing parents from different sides of an issue sit down with a mediator and talk about how to support (and not judge) each other’s parenting perspectives. New episodes air Mondays on Facebook.