5 Things You Didn’t Know About Infant GERD
Life with a newborn is anything but predictable. It’s beautiful in its own right, but it can also be messy, a bit confusing, and a little stressful. If your little bundle of joy has been struggling with excessive crying, forceful spitting up, and drastic changes in appetite, he or she may have infant GERD. That can be overwhelming to an exhausted new parent, but know that there is help and you don’t have to face the challenges of infant GERD alone. Whether your baby has been officially diagnosed with infant GERD or you simply suspect that it’s the culprit of your frustrations, here are 5 things you didn’t know about infant GERD that can be absolute game-changers.
1. It’s similar to adult acid reflux.
Some babies have acid reflux just like adults have it, but infant GERD is a little more severe. Rather than little bits of spit up, even if they’re frequent, infant GERD brings about forceful spitting up that more closely resembles vomiting, and it generally brings about a large volume of spit up.
2. It may have to do with an underdeveloped digestive system.
Babies are still growing and developing long after they are born. One area where this is most prevalent is within their digestive system. It’s why newborns can only have milk and older infants can only have gentle foods like fruits and vegetables. Some babies’ digestive systems take a little longer to develop and function properly, especially when it comes to swallowing and digesting milk well.
3. It’s rarely serious.
Even though it can be frightening to watch your baby forcefully spit up large amounts of milk, thankfully, infant GERD is rarely serious. If your baby struggles to gain weight or is constantly crying or upset due to their infant GERD, you can seek help from a professional.
4. Daily habits can help reduce symptoms.
Sometimes, just changing a few things with the baby can help alleviate some of their infant GERD symptoms. When feeding, try to give your baby smaller amounts of milk but more frequently throughout the day. This can help reduce how much they spit up (if they do) and can help them not be overfull, which can lead to more spitting up. You can also try to keep baby a little more upright, which can help their milk stay in their bellies rather than come back up. If you are nursing and suspect that something you’re eating is causing the spitting up, you can alter your own diet to see if that helps. Dairy is the most common culprit of food-related infant GERD.
5. Chiropractic can help infant GERD.
Perhaps the most effective form of treatment for infant GERD is chiropractic care. Gentle adjustments to baby’s spine can remove spinal misalignments that occurred during the birthing process. These chiropractic adjustments are extremely gentle, and they can help their little nervous systems work better, which allows their digestive system to function properly.