thread: Becoming despondent with b/f a reflux baby

  1. #1
    Aussie_Chik Guest

    Becoming despondent with b/f a reflux baby

    I am becoming increasingly despondent about b/f my reflux baby, for numerous reasons. I become quite distressed at the amount he brings back up soemtimes, i can't believe he managed to keep anything down at all and worry about his weight gain as I don't know how much he is getting. Also, how can I b/f out in public when he sometimes throws up while on the breast and also squirms a lot when it's coming back up while feeding, plus when he projectile vomits it would be quite distressing and embarassing. I feel captive in my own home and also concerned as his weight gain has been slow.

    Any reassurances out there from mums in similar predicaments? Or did anyone change to bottle feeding as a result - whether expressed or formula? I really need to hear from others in this same position. 8-[

  2. #2
    BellyBelly Life Subscriber

    Oct 2003
    Forestville NSW

    HUGE HUGS. I bf'd Matilda for 4 months and then weaned to the bottle, because it was so hard. She did have silent reflux but would vomit depending on things, and would mostly scream heaps after a bf, with projectiles too. I would be so horrified, but I really wound up going places that I was okay with bf'ing. Our shops nearby have heaps of parents rooms where I'd bf not because I was worried about anyone seeing my bb's but because of the after effect, and I would always bring an extra top for me too. And two cloth nappies to try and catch vomit. With her screaming every feed, I would just sit in the parents room for 10 minutes to help her settle. Sometimes I spent more time in the parents room than shopping, but that was okay because I was out of the house.

    Around 6 weeks we started giving Matilda a comp bottle at night of a special formula for reflux bubs so I could have a few hours to rest at night as she was still feeding every 2 hours. With the comp bottle I would express just as she was about to feed and then go to sleep & usually have 4 hours off. Which was lovely. I decided then that if we were going out for longer periods we would take a bottle with us & formula and I would express a bit off in the loo after feeding her so I wouldn't burst.

    Its really hard to bf a reflux baby because you want the best for them & sometimes they respond so much better to formula than to BM. I did do half and half for 6 weeks. And really enjoyed that. There is another alternative and that is EBM with a thickener. You can buy karicare thickener which you add to BM for reflux bubs, thats an option as well.

    I guess we did change to bottle feeding as a result of reflux, as I was planning on bf for 2 years. So 4 1/2 months is nowhere near what we wanted. But in the end, I miss bf but both of us became much happier. And if I had continued to bf by 9 months Matilda grew out of it anyway... we could have kept going, but its hard when every bf affected her so badly and with the bottle she was 80% better. Feel free to ask anything I'm happy to share my experiences.

  3. #3
    Ex adm!n, quietly rusting....

    Feb 2004

    I can't help you on the bf issue because my milk didn't come in properly, so Alexzander was ff from day three.

    His weight gain has still been slow even on the formula, so changing to formula isn't a guarantee that Tommy will put on more weight. The thing is that you can see how much he has had in the first place.

    I try to go out when Zander won't need a bottle, but he is still throwing up up to 3-4hrs after a feed, so I'm not really sure of anything! I just make sure he always has a bib on & we have spares in his nappy bag. It is still embarrassing cos people always look, but hey there's nothing I can do about it.

  4. #4
    katanya Guest

    I had a happy chucker AND I breastfed him, still am

    While Felix's vomiting never hurt him or his weight gain at the the time, I used to hate the vomits too used to do 3 loads of vomit stained clothes a day..and had to carry extra vomit clothes and towels everywhere with us..but according to a friend who worked in childcare, breastfed babies vomits smell heaps better than formula ones..

    Because felix didn't have the painful type of reflux, was never medicated I can't really share any tips appart from the obvious feeding him on an angle, if you lay down to feed then put your arm underneath his helps keep that reflux valave shut..

    My best friend has a reflux bub who is still exclusively BF, she has had MANY thoughts about stopping breastfeeding and giving him thickned formula..however at 6 mths they are still going strong and things are improving (he still has to sleep sitting upright though) if you'd like her email address, she will be very sympathetic and will reply as soon as she is able, she may have some other tips and encouragemnets for you..

    All I can say is around 6 months for Felix the vomiting stopped altogether, and it was AMAZING to go out and know we weren't going to get drenched..Feeding Felix now is a complete pleasure..there is no guareentee that the reflux will improve on formula?

    Anyhow please contact me if you'd like her email address..hope things improve for you both :hugs:

  5. #5
    katanya Guest

    Oh I was just thinking about the vomits Felix was like the excorcist and could project way out..I used to try to catch in my carpet, my couch, my bed, everywhere had that stale milk smell..often he'd miss himself and just drench me..and it would be 5 mins before going out..or he'd vomit in the checkout line, or on a new outfit I'd put him in to show him off..I was chamnging his clothes up to 8 times a day somedays..seems sureal now..

  6. #6
    BellyBelly Member

    Aug 2004

    I have a happy chucker too. I'm sick of the spew on everything, and the fact I go through about 5-8 large muslin chucky clothes a day - pretty much one for each feed.
    Black and navy blue are horrid to wear cause they show up the cheesy chucks so much more, and start to look very splotchy by the end of the day!
    Some days her chucking is worse than others. Sometimes she chucks lots straight after feeds, and other days she is still chucking 3 hours later before her next feed. Washing is a nightmare, and I really only get one wear out of each top.
    I know what you mean about the spewing on you while feeding - its horrid!! I always put a spew cloth under her head (an my hand/wrist/arm) while I'm feeding her. It catches stuff immediately, and also stops the sweaty pimples/heat rash she was getting on her temples.

    I think the most frustrating this is that she has never been diagnosed with relux, probably becasue she has a good weight gain, and is a happy chucker. Not that I would medicate her - I'm happy with 2-3 poos a day!! I hate handing her to people and saying - watch out, she'll chuck on you.

    Anyway - I'm hoping she grows out of it when solids come on the scene. Otherwise things will get REALLY messy!!


  7. #7
    Aussie_Chik Guest

    Well 3 months on and I'm still breastfeeding. I tried to wean him, dropping one feed at a time, only the very first day I struggled so badly as I was using the thickened formula and couldn't get a teat for it to flow through. All I could think was great now i can't even bottle feed him! Anyway, I found some teats that worked but realised I actually missed breastfeeding him and besides he was bringing up just as much only thicker and smelt much worse. So we are still going on, because he's weight gain is supposedly slow I decided I'd top him up each feed before I put him to bed if he's bought up a lot, so fingers crossed he keeps that lot down and starts to put on some real weight. As for breastfeeding in public, i'm over that now. If I can handle being thrown up on, then others can deal with seeing it. i'm trying to be optimistuc and hope the next 3 months will see some improvement! [-o<