The War Against Reflux: 5 Parent Recommended Battle Tools

Oh the dreaded reflux.

We escaped its wrath with our daughter, but our dear son was not so lucky.

It started when he was 10 days old, in the middle of his feedings he’d suddenly lurch forward and projectile spew the entire amount of breastmilk he’d just downed all over himself and me. This wasn’t just spitting up – this was almost violent – a back arching, unable to breath, coughing and sputtering occurance that left both of us in tears. A trip to the pediatrician revealed that he hadn’t gained any weight in 3 days and had actually lost an ounce over his one week check-up. Once all of the GI abnormalities were canceled out by a pediatric radiologist, we worked out an action plan with our pediatrician.

Zantac, shorter feedings, and lots of burping.

But like most mamas these days, I turned to the internet for more information. I poured through articles and recommendations and reached out to the readers on my blog for help. For other parents out there looking for suggestion of things in addition to a medicine regiment to help their little ones cope better with reflux, here is a list of the best recommendations I’ve tried and received:

1. The fisher-price rock n play sleeper. This handy contraption keeps baby’s at a 35 degree angle, perfect for helping them keep their feedings down. We were lucky enough that our best friend’s had one in storage that they used with their daughter. It’s been the perfect thing for Arlo to sleep in at night after his feedings

2. Colic Calm. This black liquid is apparently a charcoal based gripe water that gets rave reviews from parents. I haven’t tried it yet but I’ve ordered a bottle and it’s on its way to our house as we speak. I’ll let you know how it works!

3. Boppy Pillow. Most folks have one of these already but they make a great resting place for small infants when you drape a blanket across it and use it as a inclined hammock. Boppy recommends that children not be left to sleep in this pillow but they work great for propping baby up after a meal.

4. A few packs of large prefold cloth diapers. These don’t make reflux any better, but they’re the cheapest, most effective burp cloths you can buy. And when you have a reflux baby, you go through burp cloths like crazy.

5. So Delicious coconut milk ice cream.  Nearly every other comment I received on twitter and my blog recommended that I cut out dairy. This was fairly devastating news as I am a lactose nut - on a regular day I would eat greek yogurt with honey and berries for breakfast, cheese on my sandwich for lunch,  a cold glass of milk with dinner, and a scoop of ice cream for dessert – What exactly was I supposed to eat if dairy was a no-no? In comes this recommendation to check out coconut milk ice cream – even as a bonafide milk lover, I can vouch that it’s absolutely delicious and fulfills my creamy, sweet-treat cravings.

So that’s my top 5 – and everything except the Colic Calm is already in heavy rotation in our house. We’re really encouraged to see the number of reflux episodes that Arlo is having lessening and his level of comfort is rising. I’d love to hear from other parents battling reflux on their “must have” items in coping – What would you recommend to others dealing with reflux?

~Melissa

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