My breast fed baby has reflux, I would be lying if I said it was easy, it’s been a challenge. The response I had from the HV and midwives was, ‘oh, that’s unusual for a breastfed baby but she’s gaining weight so she’s ok’. There was no input or suggestion of how to reduce the amount of vomit so I took it upon myself to look it all up.
They were right, I did not need to be concerned about her weight gain, she was obviously having more than enough milk to cover the amount that she was inevitably spitting back up after every feed but it was such a pain! Yes, the selfish reason for me hating the reflux was that I smelt like sick, all the time, morning, noon and night my perfume of choice was eau de vomit. My carpet smelt of it, my sofa smelt of it and my bed smelt of it – bleurgh!
I was told that by the time she was 1 year old the reflux would have gone, 12 months! That’s a long time when your baby is only 1 month old – I even have it on camera, taking a picture of her in a beautiful Baby Gap outfit and she puked at the exact moment I took the photo, every gorgeous outfit I put her in was usually dirtied in around 30 minutes, I became adept at draping 2 muslin clothes across myself and around her as well as a bib to try and capture it all.
I read up and tried so many things to ease it, I have to say I tried cutting out dairy – that was tough. Milk was replaced with coconut milk (actually really nice), butter and cheese was eliminated and chocolate become my forbidden fruit. I thought it was helping but it lasted all of a day and she was back to normal so it was more of a fluke. I tried interval feeding, small feed, wind, small feed, wind but that didn’t help, I sat her up for 20 minutes after each feed, I winded her continually, I let her sleep in her swinging chair but all that did was contain the sick until she woke and I picked her up and then she vomited. Nothing seemed to help until I started weaning her at 6 months. The solids seem to help her keep the milk down so milk feeds are regularly followed by a tiny snack these days.
My baby is now 10 months old and the reflux has probably become normal levels of sick now, she isn’t sick after every milk feed anymore and I can feed her in public without the worry of having to scrabble around on my hands and knees mopping up regurgitated milk anymore.
So…the moral of the story is that it does get better! You just have to bide your time and warn everyone who wants a baby cuddle that they will probably be sicked on 🙂