He still gags violently if something new is given & not liked
Our son Dylan was diagnosed with reflux at 2 weeks old. He`s since been on 10mg`s of Losec per day. He used to projectile vomit out (nose & mouth) nearly every day- but as of recently this has reduced to maybe 1 `normal`(not projectile) throw up a week. My problem is introducing different foods for him to try, he still gags violently if something new is given & not liked. I worry he`s not eating enough.
Eg. of food given per day:
x4 240ml bottles of milk
breakfast- kiwifruit, yogurt maybe a bite of toast
dinner- any combination of peas, fish fingers scrambled eggs& pasta sprinkled with cheese
With snacks inbetween of cheese, cruskits, raisins & fruit.
Is he eating enough??
That`s not necessarily an easy question to answer (esp as I`ve no idea how old he is). My first thought is that it would be important to talk to your doctor about your concerns. Is it just the eating that is the major problem now, or do you notice other problems as well? Is he happy and content or difficult, demanding and irritable? Does he sleep well, day and night, or does he have trouble settling, or wake frequently. Does he have any breathing,wheezing,coughing problems etc- all those kinds of things- (even though his vomiting has settled, it doesn`t mean his reflux has)- it may be that if his reflux is still not under control, he`ll continue to have problems with feeding as well, so that is one aspect that you may need to talk to your doctor about. You don`t say how old he is, but perhaps his Losec needs to be increased, or his medications reviewed.
What is his weight gain like? Is he growing and developing well? That is something else the doctors will look at, to give them a clue about whether he is eating enough. Sometimes they can surprise you.
Another perspective to consider is that it is really common for refluxers to have feeding problems, and many reflux parents report problems with gagging, esp with the introduction of new foods. When you introduce new foods, is it kept at the same texture and temperature as what he is used to? Making a change in flavour may be as much change as some children can tolerate, (ie they may not tolerate a change in flavour and in texture)- if he accepts pureed food, then perhaps try giving the next food in pureed form. Many refluxers seem to have problem with introducing lumpy foods and textures so it`s possible that that is playing a role too.
There is a lot involved in the developmental process, and it may be worthwhile having an assessment with a dietitian who deals with children and/or a speech therapist who specialises in children`s eating problems. You could perhaps talk to your early child health nurse and ask them for a referral to either or both, or you could access one through your local hospital perhaps. A dietitian could let you know if his diet is adequate enough too, and if what he is eating is balanced.
There is always the possibility of food sensitivities too, with the most common one seeming to be cows milk protein. Is the milk he is having in bottles a cows milk based formula? Perhaps that, with the dairy products he is eating, might be enough to flare his reflux. It can be a really difficult question to answer.
There are a few different ideas there, and i hope it gives you a new direction to work in. Please use those instincts you have; I really believe a mother`s instincts are worth listening to, and because you are concerned about his eating, please seek medical advice. There are a lot of reasons why he could be having problems, but they would be far easier to get under control if they are addressed earlier rather than later.
I hope that helps somehow,
29 Nov 2007