Infant acid reflux seems to be a condition that a lot of new parents deal with. This is usually only temporary while the digestive system is still maturing. Most babies grow out of this between 6 months and 12 months.
Always consult your infant’s pediatrician before trying to treat any conditions. You’ll need to get an accurate diagnosis of acid reflux and rule out any other disorders. You will also want to go over any treatment options and get the pediatrician’s approval before trying them. So, again, before trying any of the listed treatments below, consult your pediatrician for their approval.
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From birth to 6 months, our son basically lived in pajamas because his acid reflux was so bad. He constantly spit up 24 hours a day. We would lay him in the Boppy pillow and put burp rags all around him because it was easier to switch them out than to change his clothes. We constantly had to warn people that held him to beware of the spit up. Trying to change him out of onesies with spit up all over him was a mess. We bought cheap Gerber zip up pajamas so we could easily change him quickly. We tried every idea that we came across, and while some worked a little, he eventually just had to grow out of it. I wanted to share all of the tips we learned so hopefully it can help someone else going through the same thing.
Some signs and symptoms of infant acid reflux may include: frequent or recurring spitting up/vomiting, fussiness during feeding or right after, refusing to eat, coughing, crying when placed on their back after feedings.
To relieve the symptoms of acid reflux in infants:
- Keep Baby Upright. After feedings, don’t lay your infant down flat. Make sure they are propped up for at least 30 minutes. One great product we found helpful during the day was the Boppy Pillow. You can also find other positioning tools to help throughout the day and night, but always consult your pediatrician before leaving a child unattended or sleeping in one of these products.
- Change Formulas. There are different formulas made to reduce acid reflux. Ask your pediatrician if changing to one of these might benefit your infant.
- Change Bottle/Nipple. Changing the type of bottle you are using may also help. You want to find the slowest flowing nipple possible. Our pediatrician recommended the Playtex Bottles with Drop-In Liners and it was a big help.
- Modify Diet- Breastfeeding. If you are breastfeeding, your diet could be promoting reflux symptoms. Chocolate, garlic, and caffeine should be cut from your diet.
- Smaller Frequent Feedings. Smaller more frequent feedings may help to reduce the symptoms of reflux.
- Rice Cereal. Sometimes putting a little rice cereal in the bottle can help slow the flow of milk and also reduces the amount of spit up. Rice cereal is considered a solid food so always consult your pediatrician before doing this.
- Frequent Burpings. Burping your infant throughout feeding times can also be an option.
- Upright in Car Seat. Make sure your infant is upright in their car seat. There may be supports available if needed.
- Chiropractor. An unconventional option is to go to a chiropractor that works with infants.
- Acid Reflux Medication. A last result should be acid reflux medication. This would need to be prescribed by a pediatrician.
While none of these tips worked for us completely, they did relieve the symptoms enough to make our son more comfortable and our life a little easier. If you have a tip or trick that worked for your baby, please let us know in the comments.