I have been told my 6 week old has relfux, by the GP. She has been started on Zantac. I have a few questions. Firstly I am having trouble giving her the medicine, she is just spitting it all out, so at the moment it isn`t making a huge difference. Having you any suggestions on how to get her to take it? Also she has just started vomiting right up until her next feed, so she might sleep, but wake up for her next feed and still be vomiting. Is this normal for reflux? Thank-you Amy
Congratulations on the birth of your beautiful baby, and also for getting the diagnosis so quickly. It isn`t unusual for bubs to object to taking Zantac- it has a very strong taste (have you tasted it?) and it can be a battle for many parents. Is she spitting it out because she doesn`t like it, or because it is coming up straight away as vomit, or its just not getting swallowed?
Have you tried putting the syringe down the side of her cheek and giving it to her slowly? Have you talked to your pharmacist as they may have lots of different products for giving medication that you could try. Some bubs will take it off a spoon where they object to having a syringe in their mouth, so that might also be worth trying if you haven`t already. Perhaps you could give her some ice chips wrapped in a hanky, to suck on- as the cold from the ice may help numb the tongue a little so the Zantac doesn`t taste so bad.
If, after talking to the pharmacist and trying different things, and you still aren`t having any success, there are other options. One is to talk to your doctor about having the effervescent Zantac prescribed, rather than the syrup. It is an adult dose tablet that dissolves, and depending on the dose she`s on, you may be able to calculate how much to use- the volume is generally higher, but the taste isn`t so bad. A compounding pharmacist may be able to disguise the flavour, though I think that`s not so easy with Zantac as without the strong minty flavour it has, it is a really bitter taste. Alternatively, if all else fails, perhaps trying a different medication, like Losec or Zoton might be more effective.
It is normal for some refluxers to vomit like that, though they`re all different. Some don`t vomit at all, while others spend all day and all night doing nothing but (or so it seems). If you are concerned about it though, please talk to your doctor or child health nurse. I`m sure they`d like to keep an eye on her weight because of all the vomiting, but yes, unfortunately it can be very normal for some.
Has anyone ever suggested food sensitivities may be a factor? I have heard that something like 40% of reflux babies have an allergy or intolerance to cows milk protein, so that may be worth considering. If you are breastfeeding, that may mean avoiding all traces of dairy (and perhaps soy), to see if it makes any difference. If it does, then it`s important to seek advice from a dietitian on how to avoid all traces of dairy (and ? soy) and how to replace those nutrients so your diet remains balanced. If you are bottlefeeding it may mean getting a prescription formula from your doctor (for neocate or elecare). While food sensitivities isn`t the answer for all refluxers, it may still be worth considering as diet changes can make an enormous difference in some refluxers.
I hope that information helps. Please keep trusting your instincts, and keep in touch with your doctors.