Vary The Frequency Of Feeding
Try experimenting with different ways of with feeding to see what works best for your baby. Feeding your baby smaller amounts more often can help, as this can help reduce reflux. But as babies get older, beyond 4 months say, it may be better to give them a larger feed less often, and then be kept awake and upright for about an hour after their feed to help prevent reflux.
Talk to your doctor or maternal and child health nurse about varying the feeds. At some point the night feed ceases to be a physical requirement and may start to disrupt sleep. When that happens you need to stop the night-time feeds gradually and gently.
Hold Baby Upright Before Naps
Another thing you can do is after feeding, burping, changing diapers, and before you put baby down to rest. hold baby upright.
This may be upright on your chest, in an infant seat, on your lap or however else, but the key is to have the baby upright so that the discomfort from reflux type symptoms are minimized. According to Healthline
A horizontal position makes it easier for the stomach contents to reflux into the esophagus. The undeveloped digestive system is the reason why all babies are prone to experience acid reflux symptoms.
The longer you keep baby in the horizontal position the better to minimize reflux discomfort for your little one.
Ultimately, reflux is something that passes in most babies around the time they begin sitting up for this very reason, so if you can hold baby upright pre-feeding then it will make a big difference.
How To Know If Your Baby Is Uncomfortable
First, you need to identify that the baby is indeed suffering from gas pains. All babies cry to a certain extent because it is their primary means of communication with those around them. But the cry associated with gas pains is different from a tired, hungry, or bored cry. A gas pain cry will be sharper and sound more frantic than others. You may also see the baby pulling up their legs in discomfort. With these two signs combined, you can be sure your baby is suffering from excessive gas.
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When Does Infant Reflux Improve
But time may be the best medicine of all, as reflux sometimes clears up after the first several weeks, once your babys muscle tone increases, and he starts spending more time sitting up, then standing, and eventually eating solids. Between six and eight weeks it started to get better, says Parks.
Is It Normal For My Baby To Cry While Asleep
First off let me just tell you, most of the time is quite normal for babies to cry while sleeping. While this is very unsettling for you as conscientious parents, it is normally nothing to be concerned about. Pediatricians advise that babies between the ages of 4 and 12 months will commonly cry softly and for short periods of time while sleeping.
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What Exactly Is Acid Reflux And Why Is It So Common In Babies
Gastroesophageal reflux disease , also known as acid reflux, is a condition in which stomach contents come back up into the esophagus, resulting in pain and discomfort. In babies with acid reflux, food backs up in the babys stomach and causes them to spit up. Babies are born without a fully mature esophagus, which is why this is such a common occurrence.
Along our path to helping our baby through acid refluxa diagnosis that happens to be incredibly common among babies. We learned a lot of amazingly helpful tricks for easing the day-to-day symptoms for reflux babies. All of those tricks came in handy when our second daughter was born. Emmeline was also diagnosed with acid reflux early on. Lucky for us, her reflux has never been as bad as her older sisters and milk doesnt seem to be a problem either still, equipped with the right tools to fight acid reflux, I felt so much more confident with baby number two.
Now that weve gone through acid reflux with two babies and I find myself answering questions all of the time about reflux, I realized it was high time I share just how we helped our reflux babies. With help from a. Few simple tips and tricks, weve been able to help our babies and others combat and reduce acid reflux symptoms.
Burp Burp Burp If Baby Has Reflux
I dont know about you, but burping aint as easy as you think it will be. It doesnt always result in a burp.
When I was in the throes of hyper-lactation I always made sure to burp for as long as it reasonably took until I felt sure baby wouldnt have gas.
I knew if Id missed one because at the 45 minute mark baby would wake up from a nap crying in pain. Id often go to the crib and lift the baby and as I did so the baby would burp.
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Personalized Sleep Help That Takes Your Babys Health Into Account
Sleep coaching a baby with reflux can be truly toughyou have to walk the tightrope of helping your baby feel comfortable and alleviate her pain, while also working to avoid any negative sleep associations that will mess with your sleep coaching plans.
So why not let us help? Our team of highly-trained, caring sleep consultants has worked with thousands of families like yours they know exactly how to account for your babys reflux and GERD while still ensuring that you have a Personalized Sleep Plan that will teach your baby positive sleeping habits and move your whole family towards sleeping through the night.
How Should I Position My Reflux Baby For Sleep
If laying your reflux baby down makes them too uncomfortable to sleep, does that mean you should change their sleeping position?
Sleep deprivation might make you desperate to try anything, but the safest sleep position for every babyeven a reflux babyis on their back and in a flat position.
It is not recommended to place a reflux baby on their tummy to sleep. Doing so increases the danger of SIDS.
You might think that spitting up on their back would be dangerous, but a newborns gag reflex is designed to protect them from breathing in their vomit.
On the other hand, newborns are not strong enough to reposition themselves to breathe better when theyre on their stomach. Back is best, even for reflux babies.
Your reflux baby might have an easier time sleeping when they are in an inclined or seated position. Many parents use to love their Rock N Plays for this reason. And as you know, there are products on the market for most new parent challenges. Its not surprising that there are incline sleep positioners marketed towards reflux baby sleeping problems.
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Before Napping Hold The Baby In An Upright Position
After breastfeeding and may be done with other things like bathing him and changing diapers, hold the baby in an upright position in your hands for a few minutes. You can hold the baby on your chest, in an infant seat as well, but the goal is to keep the babysitting upright.
Babies lying down horizontally are prone to reflux because stomach contents dont experience gravity. Hence, the contents of the stomach tend to flow back to the esophagus because the digestive system is still underdeveloped. Keeping the baby upright for as long as possible will eliminate all reflux-like symptoms from getting to the baby. If possible, keep the baby upright while feeding him/her.
But Wait How Do You Help Babies With Reflux Sleep
So with at least 3 babies who had reflux like symptoms, I learned a few things. The best you can do is to make super baby is well fed, help minimize their pain or discomfort, and create the right conditions for sleep.
But you cant make baby sleep.
Truthfully, all my babies slept well because it was something I focused on.
When you focus on something you see results.
But it wasnt without some struggle and it goes without saying comforting baby is always paramount.
Sometimes when baby is in pain it is the comfort of mom that will help him sleep. So I kept that in mind when I wanted them to sleep, but they wanted to be held or sat upright.
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What Are The Signs Of Reflux In Babies
Before jumping into sleep training, if you suspect reflux youll need to confirm the diagnosis. There are 7 signs of reflux discussed in more detail in the book Colic Solved: The Essential Guide to Infant Reflux and the Care of Your Crying, Difficult-to- Soothe Baby by Bryan Vartabedian, MD. If your baby shows any of the following signs, discuss it with your pediatrician before you embark on sleep training.
1. Spitting and vomiting 5. Discomfort when lying on the back 6. Sleep disturbance 7. Chronic cough and/or congestion
Easy to read and follow, kiddo is sleeping 12 hours
“This more gentle approach was perfect for us and by night #3 she slept 12 hours and I feel like a new person.”
What Is Silent Reflux
Reflux occurs when the contents of the stomach come back into the esophagus. Babies with normal reflux will spit up milk or formula, whereas it stays in the esophagus for infants with silent reflux.
Reflux in babies is common and generally resolves on its own by the end of the first year.
However, medical intervention may be required in some cases. Reflux that causes symptoms severe enough to impact a baby’s quality of life is referred to as GERD.
Spitting up is one symptom of GERD, but infants with silent reflux will exhibit other telltale signs.
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What Is Acid Reflux In Babies
When a baby drinks breast milk or formula, it has a tendency to back up from her stomach. This is referred to as reflux, or gastroesophageal reflux . Reflux is most common during the newborn stage and improves as time goes on.
According to the Mayo Clinic, this is because an infants ring of muscle between the esophagus and the stomach is not fully mature, allowing the contents of the stomach to flow backward.
So how do you know if your baby has reflux?
Do Not Elevate Their Crib Or Bassinet At All Ever
Wedges, putting blankets under their heads, having them sleep in a swing or Rock n’ Play are all big sleep no-nos. It is so tempting to do one of these for a baby who seems uncomfortable but the risk of something happening is too great. The AAP does not endorse any kind of wedge or other positioners for sleeping.
So many newborns struggle with reflux and, as with a lot of new baby things, the best remedy is time. But if you’re worried about the frequency, amount and other symptoms that relate to your baby’s spitting up, talk to your doctor about your concerns. Don’t be afraid to mention your concerns more than oncereflux can be stubborn. And if you get sent home with a prescription to try, grab the giant size detergent while you’re at the store too.
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Studies On Baby Acid Reflux
Australian doctors examined 24 babies who were so irritable they had to be hospitalized . Each was checked for acid reflux, but only one had it. In fact, studies now show that even babies who do have severe reflux usually have no pain. Out of 219 babies hospitalized because of severe reflux, 33% had excessive vomiting and 30% were failing to gain weight but few had just excessive crying.
A University of Pittsburgh study confirmed that acid reflux medicine makes no difference for most babies with colic. Doctors caring for 162 infants with marked crying after eating gave half the babies a powerful antacid the rest got a placebo. What happened? Fifty percent of babies got better on the medicinebut 50% got better on the placebo, too.
In truth, all babies have reflux we just call it by a different name: spitting up. There is a muscle at the bottom of the esophagus that keeps stomach juice from flowing back up to the mouth. For the first 6 months it is pretty weak, so babies often burp up a smidge of their last mealmixed with a bit of stomach acid. And, some barf huge amounts, with no crying at all. Doctors call them happy spitters and suggest just burping them better and not overfeeding. For these families, the biggest problems caused by acid reflux in infants are milk stains on clothes and sofas.
Signs And Symptoms Of Reflux
Your baby may not show any signs of reflux or they may show the following signs:
- Spitting up milk during or after feeds.
- Refusing feeds, gagging or choking.
- Persistent hiccups or coughing.
- Excessive crying or crying while feeding.
- Frequent ear infections.
You do not need to be concerned about reflux if your baby is feeding well, happy and gaining weight as normal.
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Does My Baby Have Colic Or Silent Reflux
Around 20% of babies suffer from colic, which is when your baby cries a lot, usually over 3 hours per day but with no obvious reason. Normally we can tell something is wrong with our children when they cry, but it is unknown as to why babies suffer from colic, which is why it can be easily misdiagnosed as silent reflux. However, colic is nothing to worry about and should naturally end after your baby reaches 6 months.
There are a few ways to help you find out whether your child is suffering from colic or silent reflux. The symptoms that differentiate colic from silent reflux include your baby clenching their fists, going red in the face or bringing their knees up to their chest while being held. Colic is often referred to as the Purple Crying Period due to the sheer frustration that both parents and baby experience during episodes. Silent reflux on the other hand will include symptoms such as your baby coughing or gagging, having difficulty breathing, or finding it difficult to sleep.
Reflux is nothing to worry about and should naturally end so the best thing to do is to try out different methods to soothe your baby while they are experiencing discomfort.
For more information on how to help you baby sleep visit our blog section.
Be Careful About Foods
To provide your infant with gas relief, talk to their doctor about foods that may cause extra gas. Some fruit juices contain sorbitols or sugar alcohols that babies cant absorb, causing gas. The doctor will also make sure your baby is getting all the essential nutrients they need.
If you are breastfeeding, foods youve eaten can also cause your baby to be gassy. If you give your baby formula, you can try switching brands. Some brands claim to prevent gas.
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