thread: Self induced gagging/retching

  1. #1
    BellyBelly Life Member

    Jul 2004
    House of the crazy cat ladies...

    Self induced gagging/retching

    Ok... I am finding this rather disturbing... Aidyn has a huge habit now of sticking his fingers down his throat and making himself gag, and has even made himself throw up on a couple of occasions. This has been going on for a couple of weeks I think.
    About 90% of the time he does it, he is in his cot meant to be going to sleep.
    I am wondering if he is doing it to get our attention (which it certainly does!)
    Has anyone elses child gone through a phase like this???
    I know he used to do it when he was younger but I do not thnk it was intentional, but now I am quite sure that he knows what he is doing and is not just exploring his throat...
    It just doesnt seem healthy/right to me....
    Please tell me this is normal!! LOL

    Crap... just as I was about to post this I went in (he is in his cot) and he has made himself spew everywhere... yuck.

  2. #2

    Urgh Ambah how annoying. I can't remember but I think Kam used to it as well but it never lasted very long. So i can't really be of any help. I hope he does grow out of it soon for you.


  3. #3
    layla Guest

    Ambah, I never had kids who did this but a close friend went through hell with her daughter. She would do it at bedtime, day and night, every time.
    The situation got really bad so my friend got help from a child sleep clinic. They said when the child does it, go in to them but don't speak or make eye contact. Wash them off , bath them if neccessary, all without giving them any attention. Clean up the cot and put them straight back.
    My friend did this for about a week, things got worse but then her DD stopped doing it. Figured out it wasn't fun cos it didn't get mummy all worked up anymore and she still had to go to sleep.
    I don't know how you are handling and I'm sorry if this sounds like I'm assuming you are reacting in front of Aidyn, but this is just my friends experience.
    Good luck, I hope he stops doing it soon. 8-[

  4. #4
    Life Member

    May 2003
    Beautiful Adelaide!


    I can't help you much, but I do remeber talking to my MCHN about worrying about Olivia choking when she started on finger foods.

    The MCHN was quick to tell me to really try and not visibly react when they gagged, on food, or any other situation, as many many babies do the gag thing as they get older to get attention.

    So whilst this may not be much help, it is common, apparently.

    Maybe speak to your MCHN about it and see what they suggest?

    Best of luck.......

  5. #5
    BellyBelly Life Member

    Jul 2004
    House of the crazy cat ladies...

    Thanks for the advice girls. I guess it is what I expected then, that he is doing it for attention. How strange is that? LOL
    I am just going to ignore it now, and not make a fuss...
    I guess in the past when he has gagged on food I have definately reacted.. and still do... I had better stop doing that quick smart!!

    Gee little babies can be smart... but seriously, isnt it just weird for them to be making themselves sick to get attention? Glad to hear that it is common though, and I am not making some major parenting mistake to be causing it or anything...

  6. #6
    BellyBelly Life Subscriber

    Aug 2003

    hey ambah,
    i've seen quite alot of this happening esspecially when kids are meant to be sleeping or when their parents were leaving them at the child care. They do it to get your attention and make you feel bad!! They are quick to figure out the things that make mummy pick them up and cuddle them and give them attention, so they think if they make themselves gag and/or vomit then you'lll rush to them and they'll get their own way!
    I've see kids under one do it, up until preschool/school age. We had one little girl that would do it ever morning until she threw up at the child care centre when her mum was leaving, to the point that we would take her straight to the sink as soon as mum left. She was absolutely fine five minutes later and would have a lovely day. The advice layla gave is exactly what we were told. Ignore the behaviour unless he makes himself physically sick, then clean it up quickly and put him back down. He wont do himself any harm! Good luck with it all

  7. #7
    BellyBelly Life Subscriber

    Oct 2003
    Forestville NSW

    Matilda does it heaps. She started a few months ago and would just stick her finger down her throat (as if she needs help with the vomitting situation) I don't react at all. I move her or if she's in her cot & does it I put her on the floor in the room with all the lights out, change the sheets & resettle her. She only does it once a week now... and most of the time now its in a room full of people and no one is giving her attention, and usually she's in the playpen at the time so she's doing it to get out iykwim? But it has really calmed down, for a while there she was doing it a few times a day...

  8. #8
    Melinda Guest

    Jacob does it a fair bit too and he's been doing it for quite a while now. I don't think it's an attention thing with though (at this stage LOL) as he does it regardless of whether he's being given attention or whether he is in his playpen......

  9. #9
    BellyBelly Life Member

    Jul 2004
    House of the crazy cat ladies...

    Yeah Tootie, Aidyn used to do it when he was younger, but I think at that age it is just for exploration really, and not looking for a reaction, LOL