What Is Infant Reflux ?
Infant reflux, or possetting, is a process which happens when the baby spits the milk he/she has swallowed. It is marked by the food refluxing from the baby’s stomach back into the esophagus.
The condition is rarely dubbed to be serious or resulting from an underlying medical condition. Possible conditions range from allergies to blockages in the digestive system,
Normally it arises due to the fact that a baby’s esophagus is still underdeveloped during the early years.
It’s highly uncommon for a baby to continue spitting food after it reaches the age of 18 months.
A long as the baby is growing and is not showing any such symptoms, which may signal to some other medical condition, infant reflux is dubbed to be normal and should not be a source of concern for the parents,
Causes Of Infant Reflux:
Generally, Infant reflux is a normal process which occurs due to the fact that a baby’s esophagus is underdeveloped before the age of two.
Since in infants the lower esophageal sphincter (a muscle between the esophagus and stomach) is not fully developed, the food is able to go back into the esophagus once ingested. This leads to spitting up of food or infant reflux.
Possible factors which increases the probability of having infant reflux includes:
- Babies lying in a flat position
- An almost completely liquid diet
- Premature babies
However, there have been cases where infant reflux was caused by an underlying medical condition. Possible medical conditions include:
- Pyloric stenosis
- Marked by narrowing of the stomach and small intestines, which may inhibit the transfer of stomach content into the small intestine
- Food intolerance.
- Eosinophilic esophagitis.
- Eosinophil build up may cause injuries the lining of the esophagus.
Symptoms Of Infant Reflux:
Normally, no symptoms are exhibited by babies undergoing infant reflux.
However, if infant reflux is caused by some other medical condition, then the following signs and symptoms may be exhibited by the infant:
- Coughing and gagging
- trouble swallowing
- frequent projectile vomiting
- persistent crying
- bad breath
- difficulty sleeping
- not gaining much weight, or losing weight
Diagnosis Of Infant Reflux:
In case of exhibition of symptoms, infant reflux and its underlying cause are diagnosed via:
- Physical examination
- Ultrasound, to determine if the baby has pyloric stenosis
- Lab tests, to rule out possible causes associated with lack of weight gain
- X-rays, to identify abnormalities in the digestive tract
- Upper endoscopy, to find the underlying cause
Treatment Of Infant Reflux:
Normally no treatment is required since infant reflux stops on its own accord as the infant grows up.
In case it persists for a longer period of time, the following treatment options are available:
By : Natural Health News