Free online course for separated parents
Forum - Ask questions. Get answers.
Free online course for separated parents | Family | Health | Your child's health | A Dad’s Guide to Acid Reflux

A Dad’s Guide to Acid Reflux

Maya Griffiths

Maya Griffiths

If you’ve ever had to try and help a baby suffering with acid reflux, you’ll know that watching a tiny one squirm in discomfort is unpleasant to see. Therefore, it’s good to be clued up on reflux; how to identify it, and how to help.

What is acid reflux?

Acid reflux, otherwise known as GER (gastroesophageal reflux) is when the stomach contents move upward into the esophagus.

Acid reflux issues often clear up as a child ages. However, if the symptoms are more severe (see below) then they may be indicative of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) or a cow’s milk protein allergy.

What causes acid reflux?

Babies often spit up after a feed because their digestive systems aren’t yet fully developed. As their stomachs may not work properly, the contents can make their way back up into the esophagus. This causes spitting up or vomiting.

Reflux is common in babies and unless it interferes with well-being or feeding, there is no need for concern.

Symptoms of reflux

Some symptoms of reflux are:

  • bringing up milk or being sick after feeding
  • coughing or hiccuping during a feed
  • being unsettled during feeding
  • swallowing or gulping while eating
  • crying and not settling.

Sometimes babies may show some of the above symptoms but without burping or being sick. This is known as silent reflux.

Ways to ease reflux

Usually your baby will not need to see a GP as long as they’re healthy, happy and gaining weight. Here are some things to try in order to ease your baby’s symptoms:

  • Ask for advice from your health visitor about feeding positions
  • Hold your baby upright during feeding and for as long as possible afterwards
  • Burp your baby after each meal with gentle movements.

When should I consult a GP?

If you see that your baby is suffering from any of the following symptoms, it’s time to consult a GP:

  • Regular or forceful spitting up after eating
  • Arching their back
  • Choking or gagging
  • Being very unsettled and difficult to soothe
  • Irritability
  • Loss of appetite
  • Sounding wheezy.

These symptoms may be indicative of GERD or perhaps an allergy to cow’s milk protein.

When to seek medical help urgently

Seek medical attention right away if your baby develops any of the following symptoms:

  • Being extremely irritable
  • Projectile vomiting
  • Swollen or tender stomach
  • Very high temperature/ hot or shivery
  • Diarrhoea or sings of dehydration
  • Unable to keep fluids down
  • Blood in their poo
  • Green or yellow vomit, or vomit with blood or what looks like coffee grounds in it
  • Problems breathing or swallowing.

What is cow’s milk protein allergy?

CMPA is an allergy to the cow’s milk protein found in all dairy products such as milk (including baby formula), cheese, and yogurt. It is often diagnosed while investigating what is causing GERD in babies. If this is suspected as a cause your baby will be referred to a specialist who will often try your baby on a CMPA-free formula (or ask the baby’s mother to avoid all dairy while breastfeeding) to see if their condition improves. Should this trial of dairy-free feeding work, your baby will need to avoid all dairy products.

If you have a family history of allergy, hay-fever, asthma, or eczema your baby will be more likely to develop CMPA.

Related entries

Teaching Your Kids To Avoid Scams

Teaching Your Kids To Avoid Scams

Unfortunately with our kids spending so much time on their phones and online there comes the risk of being scammed. While we as adults might be wise to the tricks scammers use- Nigerian princes included- our children probably aren't. To avoid being out of pocket and...

Latest entries

8+ habits that will improve your mental health

8+ habits that will improve your mental health

It's Mental Health Awareness Week 2024, but we believe you should focus on your mental health every day. Suicide is the biggest killer of men under 50, and even if you don't feel low now, there are ways you can optimise your every day mental health to help prevent...

She’s pregnant and seems to hate me!

She’s pregnant and seems to hate me!

So your wife is pregnant, and divorce is on the cards already? Do you feel you can't do anything right, she hates you and you think this is the end of the relationship? Rest assured, this is surprisingly common. Just google the words "my wife is pregnant and she hates...

Sex while pregnant- is it a good idea?

Sex while pregnant- is it a good idea?

Can you have sex while pregnant or does it mean nine months of chastity? Well yes, possibly, but things may continue as normal.  Many women feel protective during pregnancy and their top priority is to make sure the baby is kept safe and well. But, that doesn‘t...

Pin It on Pinterest