Baby Feeding Tips to Reduce Reflux - For my Moms & Dads!
We know you love your baby dearly, so here is just a helpful guide on feeding your baby to ensure your baby is comfortable, reduce baby stress and stress on you too!
We often find in practice two major feeding dilemmas with our parents and their babies, namely over-feeding and over-eating. Reflux occurs when the pressure inside your baby’s stomach exceeds that of the control of sphincter, hence it pops open and all the contents comes right up. This sphincter is mainly made of circular muscle, but as the baby grows, the oesophagus lengthens which helps babies outgrow this reflux action.
Look at the size of your baby’s fist. That resembles the size of your baby’s stomach. Therefore, smaller, more frequent feeds, at least every 2 hours, is key!
You are most likely feeding on top of the last feed, so try burp your baby before you start the feed. Babies take in most of the air within the first 2 minutes of the feed, so try give them a break after 2 minutes, and then again mid feed. Once you burp your baby, you just need to burp them once.
If you are bottle-feeding, check the size of the teat of the bottle. Make sure that the teat is always filled with milk and no air when feeding, and give regular breaks without allowing the milk to gush in. Some babies don't even like the plastic of the teat!
If you are breast-feeding, you are concerned that baby is over-eating, you can express and feed him through the bottle. Babies love the breast, as this is calming and comforting, and further helps to bond with their mothers.
Keep them upright (so head above their feet) during the feed, and for at least 30min thereafter, and keep their tummies warm to help activate their normal gut flora. Those kangaroo pouches are awesome, as it keeps baby upright, warm, and help you can carry on with whatever you need to do.
If baby gets tired, best is to lie your baby on his/her left side as more milk drains into the small intestine in this position. Tummy time is great for reflux, as well as strengthening your baby’s muscles and co-ordination. This you can implement within the last hour of the last feed, before your next feed.
Car seats are designed to protect your baby, but not great for reflux, so try avoid leaving your baby strapped in for long periods of time. These seats help pop open that stomach sphincter that is holding all the stomach contents in.
Hope these tips help you! See you and baby soon for your Chiropractic adjustments!
Happy feeding :)