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Symptoms Of Gastroesophageal Reflux In Infants

May 8, 2008
There is no definite group of people that can contract GERD, as adults and children can both suffer from it, even as young as infants. Infants normally spit up a little food or liquid after every eating but if your infant is often vomiting after a meal your infant might have gastro esophageal reflux disease. The symptoms usually include food substances and liquids roving up from the stomach, inflowing the esophagus and sometimes entering your infant's mouth and being spit out.

Normally Gastroesophageal Reflux in babies is due to a gastrointestinal tract that is not functioning properly. However, most of the infants who have GERD are in good health condition. Overeating, some food items and certain beverages are also factors that cause Gastroesophageal Reflux . It can also be partly caused by hereditary factors.

Bringing a newborn baby home can be a devastating prospect and many first time parents, as well as experienced ones, can feel out of their comfort zone. Many parents find that they have a newborn that seems to show signs of repeat symptoms, like being particularly picky. Most parents have heard the term "colic" before, and point this to their baby's fussiness.

Gastro esophageal reflux disease is a disease that occurs when there is a progress or reflux of stomach contents back up into the throat. Since there are usually lots of acids contained in the stomach contents, there tends to be a swelling and irritation when this occurs.

Gastro esophageal reflux in infants is usually caused by the break down of a muscle that is between the stomach and the esophagus. This muscle is similar to a door that needs to be closed when the food passes through on its way to the stomach. Occasionally this door gets jammed, resulting a reflux reaction in the stomach and the food to be unnatural back up.

At times the root of gastro esophageal reflux in infants is just an undeveloped muscle that needs time to become fully operational. Once this happens, infants with gastro esophageal reflux are no longer bothered with the symptoms.

On occasion the problem is more serious and gastro esophageal reflux in infants needs to be taken seriously because of the risk of other problems. This can consist of a problem with the intestenial tract that may have to do with an abnormality that will need surgery to repair. Or the infant may perhaps have an allergy to milk or even an ulcer. It is important to get rid of all possibilities when looking at gastroesophageal reflux in infants.

The common symptoms of Gastroesophageal Reflux in infants consists of frequent coughing, recurring vomiting, heartburn, stomach pain or showing signs of colic such as persistent crying or fussy behavior. They will often reiterate their food and then proceed to swallow it. You might notice them gagging or having some problems in breathing. Some experts believe that a poor growth rate is a indication of Gastroesophageal Reflux in infants as well as habitual bouts of pneumonia.

Several of the most regular symptoms of gastro esophageal reflux in infants are, throwing up after every feeds. Frequently this can be projectile vomiting as it is a strongly forced vomit.

Another symptom is of the unvarying crying and the infant can also show signs of symptoms of arching the back and writhing. The infant may also like better to be in an upright position. Be sure to be observant of when the infant is having these symptoms to share with a doctor.

An analysis is made by inserting a small tube down the esophagus and taking measures of overnight levels of acid within the stomach. This is very uncomfortable for the infant but the only best way to conclude if the infant has gastro esophageal reflux.

In usual information provided by the parents is adequate for a pediatrician to realize if the baby has GERD. In some cases tests are required to be completed in able to come up with the correct diagnosis. The tests for Gastroesophageal Reflux in infants consist of an upper GI series, a ph probe, an upper GI endoscope and what is referred to as a gastric emptying study.

If this is resolute to be the cause of the discomfort and other symptoms, your doctor may recommend some medication or other alternative treatments for the baby. Most infants will out grow this circumstance at around seven months.

Gastroesophageal reflux in infants is certainly a distressing condition, but the infant will mature and the symptoms will abate.

Treatments for Gastroesophageal Reflux

Doctors usually recommend that the first things parents should do is make some lifestyle changes for their infant. Parents can try elevating the portion of the crib where their baby's head is placed. Parents should hold the infant upright for approximately thirty minutes after the baby has been fed. Check with your doctor to learn if feeding your infant solid foods might be an appropriate and safe procedure for preventing GERD symptoms in your baby. If these easy changes in lifestyle don't eliminate or reduce Gastroesophageal Reflux in your infant your doctor might recommend medication.

Antacids reduce acid in the stomach and antacid products which are considered safe for children are Mylanta and Maalox. Your doctor might recommend acid blockers such as Pepcid, Zantac or Tagamet. Proton pump inhibitors decrease the amount of acid that is produced in a baby's stomach. High dosages of antacids, acid blockers and proton pump inhibitors can produce harmful side effects for babies. Using these products for too long of a time period can also produce harmful side effects. Serious side effects from using these types of medications are rare but make sure you check with your pediatrician before give your infant any of these medications. Discuss with your doctor the various treatments that are available for treating GERD in infants.

The Relationship Between Diet and GERD in Infants

Diet and Gastroesophageal Reflux in infants is particularly important because infants have a much thinner and more delicate stomach lining than adults. Therefore they will not only tend to suffer from much more pain but as well are more likely to have permanent damage done to their bodies.

Diet and Gastroesophageal Reflux in Infants

When it comes to the topic of diet and GERD in infants, the most important thing is to understand what foods should be avoided. Certain foods can aggravate the symptoms associated with the condition and should not be eaten at all, if possible.

Orange juice, tomatoes, mashed potatoes, fresh fries, onions, ground beef, marbled sirloin, buffalo wings, cottage cheese, spaghetti, and chicken nuggets, all of these are foods that can aggravate your Gastroesophageal Reflux symptoms and so you should avoid them completely if you can or at least limit how much you eat of them and how often.

When it comes to diet and GERD in infants it is also a good idea to keep a food diary, because this way you can keep track of what you are feeding the infant and notice whether they are making any improvement, particularly when you remove the aggressing foods from their diet.

Exercise is also important here and plays a major role in terms of your success in dealing with the condition.

If you have an infant suffering from Gastroesophageal Reflux it is important that you get them in to see the doctor as soon as possible and make sure that they get appropriate treatment as soon as possible.
About the Author
Cindy Heller is a professional writer. Visit acid reflux gerd to learn more about gastroesohagel reflux in infants and other natural remedies for infant gerd.
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