- Where does reflux in babies come from?
- The origins of reflux
- Symptoms of reflux in babies?
- Fight against gastric reflux to relieve baby
- Consult a doctor or early childhood specialist
- Baby's position after bottle feeding
- Baby's diet
- The choice of anti-reflux bottle
- The best anti-reflux baby bottles
- What to remember about reflux in babies
From the first weeks, babies can experience what is called reflux. Impressive and confusing for young parents , they can sometimes even lead you to ask certain questions.
Is baby vomiting? Is it lacking nutrients essential for its proper development? Does breastfeeding promote reflux? Or on the contrary, would feeding your baby powdered milk ultimately not be conducive to good nutrition?
We will detail in the following article where reflux comes from and what solutions can be put in place to relieve the pain caused to your child.
Where does reflux in babies come from?
The origins of reflux
It is normal to be concerned the first time you are confronted with reflux, sometimes impressive, in infants. Especially since no one really talks about this phenomenon, which is widespread among future parents during the nine months of pregnancy.
Firstly, it is important to reassure ourselves about the fate of newborns. No, baby didn't throw up his meal. The quantities spat out are in reality only a tiny part of what he ingested and therefore do not risk depriving the baby of the nutrients essential to his development.
In addition, the fact of breastfeeding your child or preferring to give a bottle of industrial milk does not guarantee one hundred percent and in a scientific manner that there is a real difference in the appearance of reflux. .
Baby is simply confronted with external reflux, which must be dissociated from internal reflux, or “silent” reflux. The latter often goes unnoticed since it remains in the child's throat. Behind all these names lies a physiological explanation.
Indeed, the digestive system of a child being immature, its valve preventing this type of rise is not yet completely operational. Sometimes, the volume found on your sleeping bag can be very impressive. In the most severe forms, baby can suddenly spit out what appears to be his entire meal in the form of a jet.
Baby has also not yet developed enough muscle tone and therefore does not hold his head correctly. These elements are all medical explanations provided by doctors to try to understand the origin of reflux.
Symptoms of reflux in babies
In addition to soiling their clothes and incidentally those of their parents, babies may sometimes show clinical signs.
In reality, it is not the reflux itself that is painful but the acidity that composes it. This acidity will ultimately cause irritation and then painful inflammation of his esophagus.
- Baby screams, cries , squirms and temporarily turns pale.
- He may be prey to a chronic cough, caused by irritation of the lining of the esophagus.
- The horizontal position seems uncomfortable to him. Indeed, reflux rises much more easily when your child is lying down.
- It may happen that your child makes a face and sticks out his tongue all the time. He chews and seems to ruminate.
After the appearance of these symptoms, it usually does not take long for him to expel orally some of the contents of his predigested meal.
This last data varies depending on the time elapsed between the meal and the regurgitation.
This can sometimes give off a smell of sour milk, which in no way improves the comfort of the situation. Once the reflux is externalized, the child calms down and the symptoms subside.
Fight against gastric reflux to relieve baby
In addition to immaturity of the digestive tract , several other factors favor the appearance of reflux. Fortunately, it is possible to have authority over these variants and act accordingly.
To maximize the chances of relieving baby, you must act on several levels:
Consult a doctor or early childhood specialist
As we mentioned above, reflux should not be taken lightly because it is painful for the baby. This therefore requires obtaining medical advice first.
This will make it possible to define whether it is gastroesophageal reflux or whether the baby is only suffering from simple regurgitation associated with intestinal gas, for example.
A newborn is not endowed with the use of speech, his cries and his cries are for him the only way to alert him to his condition.
Therefore, the personal interpretation of parents cannot escape the diagnosis of health professionals.
Baby's position after bottle feeding
It is recommended to always stand your baby upright for at least twenty minutes after each feeding or bottle, holding your child against you, his head against the right shoulder for example with the right hand resting just behind his skull. The left hand must then come as reinforcement under his buttocks and his little legs will surround the waist of his father or mother for better stability.
Some specialists will even go so far as to advise holding your baby in this position for half an hour. By doing this, the risks of baby regurgitating are greatly limited because he is allowed to “burp” and evacuate a large part of the air ingested during his meal.
There are thicker, anti-regurgitation milks available commercially. Adding cereals to your child's milk in accordance with the dosages mentioned by the manufacturer also helps to thicken the preparations and limit regurgitation.
However, be careful not to overdo it because these preparations are generally very sweet. A large choice of cereals is nevertheless available. For example, we find rice or quinoa, which both constitute an interesting alternative if, for example, your baby has an intolerance to gluten.
It is particularly possible to intervene on the quantitative aspect of meals. A baby with a lot of reflux may be a baby who drinks a lot and too quickly. Taking breaks helps encourage him to do a first “burp” in the middle of feeding with the carrying method described in the previous point.
By acting this way, we also reduce the risk of colic in babies.
To find out more about the best anti-colic bottle to adopt, we invite you to read the article right here for the well-being of your child.
The choice of anti-reflux bottle
By offering anti-reflux bottles , reflux is significantly reduced. Very practical, most of these bottles are designed to feed baby in a way that limits the incoming air and thus allows the stomach to gently receive its milk ration without the formation of bubbles.
How ? There are different systems to minimize reflux.
The best anti-reflux baby bottles
In order to prevent reflux, we must first of all limit the risks of baby ingesting air while drinking. Indeed, in addition to causing the appearance of colic, the air moving in the stomach of newborns constitutes an additional force which stirs up the swallowed contents and thus promotes its rise towards the esophagus.
To avoid this, some brands offer baby bottles with a removable straw . Others preferred the addition of a valve that creates a vacuum and is placed at the bottom of the bottle.
The pacifier is also an accessory that should not be underestimated. Its shape and flow rate play a key role in the passage of air during suction. A slow flow pacifier should be preferred for each newborn.
The shape of the bottle itself is also an important criterion. S-shaped bottles are specially designed so that the milk remains towards the teat even when baby is fed in an upright position.
Be careful, the bottle used alone will not be able to prevent the appearance of reflux. It is by combining each solution mentioned above that it is possible to achieve a conclusive result.
What to remember about reflux in babies
Reflux is not a serious phenomenon in itself but can hamper daily life and that of the baby.
In addition, it is painful and must be resolved so as not to develop into esophagitis.
Physiological in origin, it is nevertheless possible to help improve your child's comfort by:
- verticalizing baby after each meal.
- providing him with a slightly more solid diet and structuring his meals by firstly reducing the quantities and then spacing out the times of intake. (refer to medical advice before making any decision regarding your little one's diet)
- Opting for an anti-reflux bottle aimed at protecting baby from the risk of regurgitation after each meal. Élhée baby bottles fully fulfill this function. Their ergonomic shape and their teat limit the passage of air during sucking.
Good news ! Reflux usually fades around six months of baby!