Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) known as acid reflux is a very common digestive problem, especially for newborns rarely for infants. This becomes a problem if it continues for a longer period in babies and disappears once they grow.
What will be the causes, signs, manifestations for reflux in babies? This is almost the question that many parents especially new moms are looking for today. There are several reasons behind acid reflux in babies. The key thing is because of the food from the stomach moves back to the esophagus. It causes reflux in babies while feeding or after feeding may lie down immediately without burping.
In case if you are traveling it will become worse for reflux babies. So try to avoid or else you can use the best car seat for reflux babies. In this article, we would like to share the full range of issues related to gastroesophageal reflux disease in children.
So you can have more knowledge about reflux related issues in children. It will also be useful as a guide whether medical examination and early treatment are required if any for reflux babies.
What is gastroesophageal reflux disease in children?
Gastroesophageal reflux is the reflux of food from the stomach to the esophagus. It is one of the most common causes of wheezing and milk in children under 1-year-old, often prolonged time.
Similarly, when food from the stomach moves to the intestine, it passes through a valve that functions as the mind called the pyloric. In newborns and young infants, the cervical muscle is weak, with well developed pyloric muscle. Therefore, food easily remains in the stomach for more time and causes gastroesophageal reflux disease in children.
Statistical data says that more than half of newborns will have gastroesophageal reflux disease in the first 3 months of life. The pediatrician needs to differentiate between normal reflux and pathology.
Signs of gastroesophageal reflux disease in children
The following are the symptoms of gastroesophageal reflux disease in children. If you feel that your baby is expressing these symptoms you should pay attention and consult your pediatrician at the earliest.
- Vomiting is common among newborns. But if it occurs often and prolonged, you should be aware.
- Because of irritation in the esophagus, they may not eat properly. They will be stubborn.
- As they feel uncomfortable, they will feel fussy after feedings.
- They may have trouble breathing while they lay down and cough and wheezing may disturb them. Curve your back during or immediately after feeding.
- Poor appetite.
Some other symptoms of reflux in children
We can easily miss gastroesophageal reflux disease in children. Reflux in children usually goes away on their own around 12-18 months of age. These symptoms rarely harm the baby.
For children under 18 months old still, reflux for no apparent reason. Gastroesophageal reflux might be because of surgical pathology causing prolonged vomiting. This leads to enlarged stenosis of the pyloric muscle, slit hernia, enlarged esophagus, double esophagus, bowel abnormality, and tumor-causing insertion.
Gastroesophageal reflux disease in children is not dangerous. If symptoms persist after 18 months or get worse, consult your pediatrician. Serious symptoms include:
- Do not eat
- Shortness of breath
- Vomit an enormous amount
- Green or brown discharge
- Difficulty in breathing after vomiting
Complications for reflux in children
When children after a 1-year-old still frequently vomit milk and have the signs of reflux pathology mentioned above, they will experience complications of gastroesophageal reflux in three ways.
Gastrointestinal complications: As the esophagus gets inflammation, it affects the child’s routines of eating and drinking. The Barrett esophagus, which is an inflamed esophagus, occurs when reflux is severe. It causes narrow esophagus pathways that make it difficult to circulate food from the mouth to the stomach.
Respiratory complications: Babies will be prone to wheezing, a prolonged cough, and conventional treatment does not relieve their symptoms. Acid from the stomach flows up the esophagus causing the vocal cords in the throat to thicken, making the baby wheeze, hoarseness. More seriously, it links gastroesophageal reflux to childhood asthma.
Oral and ear-nose-throat complications: Children with reflux disease may have ear infections, sinusitis, tooth erosion, slow weight gain, malnutrition, and long-term effects on the development of young.
Precautions to reduce reflux symptoms
Parents can follow simple precautions and try to reduce acid reflux in infants. As it is common among newborn babies’ parents should know taking care of babies. Here are a few tips for the parents to reduce reflux in infants.
Burping makes your baby feel comfortable so often try to do while feeding and after feeding. By doing this it releases gas which relieves reflux in babies.
Once you complete feed holds your baby in an upright position. This will help a lot in reducing reflux. This condition becomes worse while using a car seat if you are traveling. So choose the best car seat for a reflux baby to reduce acid reflux.
Natural remedies for reflux in babies
Acid reflux can be overcome at an early stage. Some natural treatments give you a wide picture of reflux in babies.
- Proper breastfeeding
- Proper positioning while feeding
- Frequent feeding in a lesser amount
- Often burping
- Avoiding plays after immediate feeding
- Comfortable clothing
- Proper food habits
Medical remedies for reflux in babies
Nowadays parents are aware of differentiating between common spitting or vomiting. If you feel reflux is getting prolonged and worse than normal immediately consult your pediatrician. The acid formed in the stomach gets reduced by the medicines prescribed by your pediatrician.
We give some common medications used for acid reflux in babies below.
- Histamine -2 blockers
- Nexium and Prevacid
As a parent, you will be more worried about your babies while taking care, especially in the initial stages of life. These points will be a supportive useful tool from childbirth until they become toddlers. Let your baby burp a few times while feeding. Feed your baby more often, with smaller amounts each time. Keep your baby upright for 30 minutes after eating. Change the mother’s diet (if the mother is breastfeeding). Change the milk for your baby. Some prescribed drugs to control symptoms of reflux. Ensure the seating position of the baby in the car while traveling as it creates pressure for the stomach, which causes reflux. So the best car seat for reflux babies is one choice of parents, safe for babies. Through this article, parents now know more about gastroesophageal reflux disease in children so they can handle more easily when encountering such conditions in their children.