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Spitting Up in Infants and What it Means

Updated on May 6, 2015
Acid reflux in babies is not a good thing. Read more information in this hub about what to do.
Acid reflux in babies is not a good thing. Read more information in this hub about what to do. | Source

Learning things about being a parent includes knowing when to worry and when not to. It also means finding ways to make their life easier and less stressful. This is a good idea to follow when it comes to better lives for mom and dad. One of the best ways to see this take place is for the baby to have great physical health. An infant with a constant case of diarrhea or spitting up is not in a healthy state. Find out what to do in order to make them feel better.

Signs of pneumonia include any coughing, a chronic cough, wheezing or signs of discomfort from the acid reflux such as the arching of the back. Infants that spit up with the acid reflux and develop pneumonia will typically not gain weight; many times they will refuse to eat.

Never fear. Countless babies have lived through the spit up months and years and turned into healthy children.
Never fear. Countless babies have lived through the spit up months and years and turned into healthy children. | Source

This is one of the better books from medical professionals on Pyloric Health and Disease. Amazon is he key to books and documentation related to current health

New mommies and daddies are always on alert

Parents worry. This is simply what they do. There is a always something on any mom and dad's mind when it comes to their child. They want to make certain their child is okay. This is true whether the kid is five or fifteen. When it comes to small ones, babies, the threat is increased and very real most of the time.

No parent knows everything, There is always something new to add to the repertoire. This is certainly true for those new to the game.Avoid feeling inadequate in any way. Everyone who was ever a parent has been there. Education is important for any type of issue or concern. Knowing more is a great help with combating any apprehension felt.

This does not necessary mean call the ambulance or put the child in I.C,U. In fact, there are more than a few things to do at home to make certain all is well, before calling the pediatrician. Find out what if anything is able to be done at home to make life easier for both of you.

What is spit it?

When a baby does spit up, it’s actually the soft sloshing of the contents of the stomach and the contents of the tummy comes up and out of the mouth. There are times when the action is accompanied by a burp. Other times a facial expression of discomfort or crouching of the body takes place at the same time as the spit up.

Spitting up typically does not force milk or whatever else is in the tummy to a projectile state, like vomiting. This is characteristically seen as more of a drool out of the mouth. Every once an a while it looks like a little more than drool, but not like vomit.

How is this different from vomiting?

Spitting up in infants is definitely not the same as when a baby vomits. When an infant vomits, or anyone for that matter, it is done with a forceful expulsion of everything that is in the stomach and the stomach muscles actually contract. The body is bent at an angle in nearly all cases and the force pushes the vomit out and away from the body. Know the distinction.

Why does it happen?

Most babies are known to spit up milk out of their mouths. Occasionally it comes out of the nose at the same time. The exact cause varies, but the usual culprit is because the top of the stomach is often loose. This is normal. The body is still changing and developing and the top of the stomach gets stronger and better when it comes to doing its job which eliminates spitting.

What helps?

With all the different formulas in the marketplace, making certain baby has the right one is important. Breast feeding is still the best one going. The milk is easily digested and has all the ingredients needed.

One of the best things about it is infants typically spit up less frequent the older they get. Some pediatricians believe it is because the body is developing or growing making it easier to digest milk/formula. Others are under the impression as the amount of milk needed and ingested decreases so does spitting up. Both theories are feasible.

In the mean time, try other methods to make things work better and baby feel better.

Getting the right food for baby

  • breast fed babies

The big culprit with breast fed baby is what mommy is ingesting. If the mother has something as simple as a piece of chocolate, she is putting pollutants in the baby's milk.When mommy eats well and stays healthy so does the little one.

stay healthy

If mom gets the flu, not only does she feel terrible enough to get baby ill with the flu, but it is possible for her milk to dry up or become affected negatively. In case milk goes dry, breast fed becomes bottle fed.bad things for mom are also bad for baby.

bad for mom is bad for baby

Never use acetaminophen or even cough syrup when breast feeding. Everything put in her mouth gets in the milk and baby eats it. This is a large reason why breast fed infants have issues with digestion. It isn't necessarily their food intake, but the mommy's food intake causing issues.

  • bottle fed babies

Pediatricians for bottle fed babies prescribe a formula before leaving the hospital. They take in consideration the health of the baby. This is one of the foremost things to keep in mind. The most popular and most admired brands are typically found at the top of the list.

regular brands

As more advancements in medicine change, so does the brand formulas. Though, if baby has any other health concerns, the milk is tweaked to accommodate them. Some health issues happen in vitro while other are identified after baby comes into the world.

special formulas

For babies lacking in enough iron, those lactose intolerant or smaller ones needing more protein, there are options offered. Doctor discusses this with mom and dad before heading home. The child is characteristically already on the recommended milk before leaving the hospital.

  • sometimes things change

Although doctor or other medical professionals suggest a brand and kind of formula, this doesn't necessarily mean the same one will always be there throughout the bottle fed years. In fact, there is a percentage of kids who will switch formula before moving to table food. Some milk is adding benefits while providing


Burping particularly helps to decrease the frequency and severity of spitting up. Since an infant is unable to take care of doing this alone, mommy and daddy take care of it. Immediately following a feeding, or during, is the most effective.

A healthy baby empties the tummy with a spit up which contains nearly all milk. There won’t be any stomach acid or other contents. Nothing needs to be done medically at this point and time. As the baby continues to grow the top of their stomach will become stronger and the sphincter at the top will tighten and the spitting up in the infant will decrease.

When to think of medical intervention

Healthy babies are generally gauged by their rate of growth over a specified period of time. A baby in good health gains at a rate of at least a minimum of 6 ounces each week. They should have a wet diaper at least every six hours and the act of spitting up generally decreases considerably by the time they are 4 months old and stop all together by 7 months old. Some babies possibly take a little longer.

  • outside of the AMA growth rate

Any parent with an infant outside of these guidelines, specified by the American Medical Association, would do well to take their child to the doctor for a check up for this specific reason. are concerned and your baby is older than 7 months and still spitting up, discuss with a pediatrician.

  • possibly food allergies

Many people mistakenly believe spitting up in infants is always do to a milk or formula intolerance. This is certainly sometimes the case. This is characteristically not due to a food allergy or something in the mommy’s diet for breast fed infants.Though, there are exceptions to the case.

  • something more serious

It is possible this condition in babies means something other than the sphincter at the top of the stomach too loose, all of the milk doesn’t stay in the stomach, but the baby is receiving enough nourishment to continue to be healthy and grow. The valve located at the bottom of the stomach is also a culprit for the same reason.

  • medical conditions requiring surgery

If the valve at the bottom of the stomach is too tight babies will spit up. When the valve is too tight at the bottom of the stomach it makes the stomach too full and the milk comes up. There are times when their tummies are so little bigger air bubbles take up all the room and the milk will be spit up. One other reason for this issue is a baby drinking their milk too fast. If surgery is needed a pediatrician refers children to a specialist.

  • babies need medication

There are babies with acid reflux and occasionally have enough acid the esophagus gets irritated and become tenders and red. When babies are experiencing pain, so are new mommy and daddy. Prescription medication is sometimes the answer. Though this is usually the extreme end of things. Other options are offered by the pediatricians in charge.

Babies will cry and arch their backs from the pain they experience from the acid reflux in the esophagus. One of the most dangerous situations about acid reflux in babies is the fact that as that acid comes up and out it can be inhaled into the lungs and contract pneumonia. Therefore, watch carefully for any signs of it.

Pyloric stenosis is a condition which should be considered when an infant is spitting up and best diagnosed by a pediatrician or physician. Medical intervention is needed for treatment.

Hope for the future

Most parents will see the spitting upat its worse the first couple of months of life. After that it will continue to get less frequent and by four months of age stop all together. The only real issue with the spit up is an increase in laundry for new mommy and daddy.


There are ways to reduce the chances of the situation happening. When feeding baby burp them several times throughout the feeding. Burping your baby should continue until they are old enough to burp themselves.

Sit the baby upright after feeding and make certain their head is supported at all times during feeding and burping. Sitting upright will move the air to the top of the stomach and learning the infant forward with pressure on the back to produce a burp. Generally a light tapping motion is required for many infants to produce a burp. The smaller the baby, the more often you need to burp them.

More tips

There are several other things shown to help reduce the frequency of your infant spitting up;

· limit breastfed babies to one breast for feeding to reduce infant spit ups

· Bottle fed babies should avoid being fed in large amounts without burping in between a couple of ounces of formula

· After feeding hold them upright for about 20 minutes

· When a baby is laying down, try to keep the head slightly elevated

· Sometimes breast fed babies have something in mommy’s diet causing gas. Review a mother's diet and determine if something is possibly in her diet to eliminate to ease the gas. Reducing gas will also reduce the frequency or even chance of this taking place.

Even the veterans of the game admit each child is different. There are always the basics, but exceptions are true because every individual has their own uniqueness.

Some have more spit up episodes than others. Some are better burpers and there are also those who never spit up. Though, the likelihood is every baby does spit up a small amount

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