Baby Reflux Management: How To Help
While reflux is usually nothing to worry about and generally resolves itself,there are plenty of things you can do to help:
- Feed your baby little and often smaller amounts of milk are more manageable for tiny tummies.
- Take your time babies with reflux dont cope well if feeding happens too quickly.
- Try to keep your baby upright during and after feeding.
- Try winding your baby before and after feeds.
- Avoid bouncing your baby up and down after a feed.
- Avoid dressing your baby in outfits that are tight around the waist.
- If youre bottle-feeding, try a slow-flowing teat to stop your baby guzzling their milk and taking in too much in one go.
- You might also want to speak with your GP or pharmacist about the special infant formulas available for babies with reflux.
What Is Gerd In Children
GERD, or gastroesophageal reflux disease, is a long-term digestive disorder. It happens when stomach contents flow back up into the food pipe and cause symptoms or problems.
GERD is a more serious and long-lasting form of gastroesophageal reflux .
GER is common in babies under 2 years old. Most babies spit up a few times a day during their first 3 months. GER does not cause any problems in babies. In most cases, babies outgrow this by the time they are 12 to 14 months old.
It is also common for children and teens ages 2 to 19 to have GER from time to time. This doesnt always mean they have GERD.
What Formula Is Best For Babies With Reflux
If your babyâs healthcare provider thinks your babyâs formula may be causing reflux or GERD, the provider may suggest switching to a protein hydrolysate formula. This is a type of formula that is hypoallergenic. If your baby has an allergy to the proteins found in a milk- or soy-based formula, this switch may help. It may take one to two weeks for your babyâs reflux symptoms to improve after making this switch.
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Acid Reflux In Babies: Causes Symptoms And Natural Remedies
Acid reflux occurs when the stomach contents move upward into the esophagus. Heres what parents need to know about this common newborn digestive problem.
Babies often spit up after eating because their digestive systems aren’t fully developed. This conditionknown as acid reflux or gastroesophageal reflux rarely causes problems, and it usually disappears as your little one ages. However, extreme acid reflux symptoms may point to another problem, such as gastroesophageal reflux disease .
How Is Gastroesophageal Reflux Diagnosed
In older kids, doctors usually diagnose reflux by doing an exam and hearing about the symptoms. If your child has GER symptoms, try to keep track of the foods that seem to cause them. This can help the doctor figure out what’s going on.
In younger children and babies, doctors might run these tests to diagnose GER or rule out other problems:
- Upper GI radiology study. This special X-ray can show liquid backing into the esophagus, irritation or narrowing of the esophagus, and any upper digestive tract problems. For the test, your child will swallow a small amount of a chalky liquid . This liquid appears on the X-ray and shows the swallowing process.
- 24-hour impedance-ph probe study. This is the most accurate way to detect reflux and how often its happening. A thin, flexible tube goes through the nose into the esophagus. The tip rests just above the esophageal sphincter for 24 hours to check acid levels in the esophagus and to detect any reflux.
- Milk scans. This series of X-ray scans tracks a special liquid as a child swallows it. The scans can show whether the stomach is slow to empty liquids and whether the refluxed liquid is being inhaled into the lungs.
- Upper endoscopy. Doctors look at the esophagus, stomach, and part of the small intestines using a tiny fiber-optic camera. They also may take a small tissue sample of the lining of the esophagus to rule out or find other problems.
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What Is Infant Reflux
When your baby is spitting up, it simply means that whats in your babys stomach is coming back up through their mouth or nose. The official name is gastroesophageal reflux which is usually shortened to just reflux.
Reflux alone is a normal thing for babies, and for most it doesnt become a bigger issue.
Natural Remedies For Acid Reflux In Babies
If your baby is showing signs of reflux, consider these natural remedies for the digestive problem.
Breastfeed, if possible.Breastfeeding is best for a baby with reflux, since littles ones digest milk twice as fast as formula. If breastfeeding isn’t possible, talk to your doctor about which formula is best for your baby. Sometimes switching to a hypoallergenic or lactose-free option can help relieve symptoms.
Keep Baby upright after feeding. Keeping your baby in a sitting position during feedingsand for at least 20 minutes afterwardcan prevent food from traveling upward into the esophagus.
Give frequent but small feedings. This will be easier on Baby’s stomach and also decrease reflux because there is less to regurgitate. Some babies with reflux naturally prefer to eat this way others get cranky if they don’t get their full feeding right away. After a few days, though, your baby should adjust to this new schedule, so try to stick with it.
Burp often. You might want to stop feeding every two to three ounces to burp Baby. Burping will release gas and relieve the symptoms of reflux.
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Nursing Mothers Should Take Care Of Themselves Too
Breastfeeding is the normal way of providing young infants with the nutrients they need for healthy growth and development.
When you are breastfeeding your baby, you need to give importance to your diet, too. The diet you follow has a direct influence on your babys health and its growth and development.
In fact, breastfed babies may benefit from a change in the mothers diet. Hence, breastfeeding mothers should keep a close eye on their diet to help avoid acid reflux in babies.
- Give up all dairy products immediately, as the protein found in dairy products can irritate a babys immature digestive tract.
- Avoid common allergens including wheat, gluten, citrus, nuts, eggs, and soy.
- Limit high-fat, fried, or spicy foods, as well as carbonated drinks, chocolate, and caffeine.
- Keep away from alcohol and cigarette smoke.
- Breastfeeding mothers should eat probiotic yogurt daily to improve both their own and their babys digestive system.
- As water is a key ingredient in breast milk, nursing mothers should drink plenty of water throughout the day to keep their body hydrated.
What Are The Signs & Symptoms Of Gastroesophageal Reflux
Common signs of reflux include:
- heartburn . It can last up to 2 hours and tends to be worse after meals and when lying down
- frequent spitting up or vomiting, especially after meals
- the feeling of stomach acid coming up into the back of the throat
- acidic or bad breath
- frequent cavities, especially in the back teeth, despite good brushing
Signs of GER in babies and young children include:
- choking or wheezing
- wet burps or wet hiccups
- spitting up that continues beyond a child’s first birthday
- irritability or inconsolable crying after eating
- refusing to eat or eating only small amounts
- failure to gain weight
Some of these symptoms may get worse if a baby lies down or is placed in a car seat after a meal.
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Acid Reflux Disease Symptoms In Babies Include The Following:
- Frequent regurgitation
- Buildup and pooling of fluid in the middle ear
- Persistent coughing, wheezing, or noisy breathing
- Chronic hiccups
- Sour breath
- Hoarseness caused by the narrowing of the area under the vocal cordsRunny nose and red eyes during feeding
- Refusal to feed
- Low weight gain
If you suspect GERD or LRP in your child, it is best to consult your healthcare practitioner. Even natural remedies for acid reflux should be discussed with your doctor. Fortunately, effective and safe natural remedies for these forms of acid reflux are available. Some will immediately address the symptoms and lessen the discomfort and pain for your baby.
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Working With Your Pediatrician
Reflux can be challenging to manage and, at times, disheartening. Many families try a number of remedies before finding one that works for their baby, only to have that remedy stop working after a couple of months.
Try to have patience and keep the lines of communication with your pediatrician wide open. It can help to keep track of the interventions you try when and how your baby reacts. Also log any changes to their diet or routine, as those could affect their symptoms too.
If your baby has GERD, you might consider consulting with a pediatric gastroenterologista doctor who specializes in digestive health issues in children.
A Guide To Reflux In Babies
If you have a baby, then youre probably already well aware of the fact that all babies spit up . For most babies, this is completely normal and is not a cause for alarm. But for some, its a little more complicated than that. Find out if your baby is just a happy spitter or if it could be something more.
Acid Reflux In Newborns Know The Causes Symptoms And Remedies
Gastroesophageal reflux is reflux where the baby spits up milk after a feed while burping. This is a common occurrence in babies as well as adults. GER is common in infants under 2 years and babies less than 3 months to spit up milk a few times a day. Symptoms of acid reflux in newborn first shows up around 2 to 4 weeks and peaks around 4 months, which resolves when they are 12 to 18 months of age. Gastroesophageal reflux disease is a long-term digestive disorder and a long-lasting form of GER.
GERD symptoms, when it occurs after 12 to 14 months, include spitting up, vomiting, reduced feeding, breathing issues, fussiness and crankiness, frequent hiccups, and losing weight. The natural remedies for calming acid reflux in babies are burping them, frequent but small feedings, not over-feeding them, keeping the baby in an upright position after feeding, avoiding tight diapers and clothes, and checking the nipple size of the bottle to avoid the baby swallowing too much air.
A newborn baby spitting up after a feed is considered normal by many parents. Well, babies burp like adults, and when they do, they may or may not spit up milk.
But, what to do when this act of spitting up milk increases multifold, and your baby constantly vomits everything she drank, losing weight, and is very irritable after eating?
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What Is Reflux In Babies
So we know that reflux is common, but what causes reflux in babies? Because infants dont yet have a fully developed lower esophageal sphincter the muscle at the bottom of the esophagus that opens and closes to allow food into the stomach and keep it there food can easily slip back up the esophagus.
Acid reflux, also known as gastroesophageal reflux , is normal reflux that occurs among infants. 40-65% of infants experience this normal reflux. How do you know if a baby has acid reflux? If an infant is spitting up milk after feedings, theres a good chance that he or she has this type of reflux. As babies mature, GER usually goes away on its own with no intervention needed.
If a baby experiences complications that go beyond just spitting up small amounts milk such as difficulty feeding and discomfort he or she may have GERD. The symptoms of GERD include the following: 1
- Arched back during or after eating
- Crying more than three hours per day with no medical cause
- Poor eating or refusing to eat
- Poor weight gain or weight loss
- Trouble breathing
- Forceful or frequent vomiting
GERD usually occurs when the LES muscle becomes weak or relaxes when it shouldnt, resulting in stomach contents resurfacing into the esophagus.
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When To See A Healthcare Provider
GER is very common in babies, especially premature babies, and often times resolves on its own. So if your baby is spitting up a lot but seems happy and is growing, then you can put your mind at easethis is normal and will pass.
While they may be bothersome, frequent spit-ups in premature babies have not been found to cause problems with growth or nutritional deficiencies.
Still, if your baby is exhibiting more worrisome signs or symptoms, it’s important to talk with your healthcare provider. Specifically, get a medical opinion if your child:
- Resists feeds
- Has frequent or forceful vomiting
- Shows discomfort when feeding
- Is not gaining weight
In these instances, GER may be the underlying problem or there may be something else going on.
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Introducing Solids To A Baby With Silent Reflux
It would be fabulous to be able to give you a definitive list of foods that are well tolerated by reflux babies, but of course, when it comes to reflux, every baby is just too different.
Some health professionals recommend using baby rice cereal to thicken formula or expressed breastmilk of a baby with reflux before six months, to help keep the milk down. We would recommend only doing this under the advice of your doctor.
Although fruits are part of a normal starting-solids regime, you may like to tread lightly and only attempt very small amounts of new foods.
Acidic fruit like green apples or tomato and bananas may cause a flare up as well.
Breastfeeding Or Donor Breast Milk
As breastfeeding mummas know, what you eat is passed through your milk. Altering a mother’s food intake can sometimes help with reflux.
This isn’t easy, though, because it’s hard to know exactly what foods are triggering the reflux. There are so many factors at play.
But you may start to notice a pattern that certain foods are causing discomfort in your baby, such as coffee, chocolate and citrus fruits, these foods may be causing your babies reflux to be worse.
Less commonly if your baby has reflux caused by an intolerance rather than the most common type of reflux, which is caused by an immature valve, the most common culprits are dairy, soy and wheat.
Do be careful though – as a breastfeeding mother you require lots of nutrients, so wed recommend talking to your doctor before making any dietary changes.
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