Why are so many babies on Gaviscon, Ranitidine and Omeprazole?

Why are so many babies on Gaviscon, Ranitidine and Omeprazole?

Have you noticed how many babies now seem to be suffering from reflux? Cases of reflux have massively increased in the last few years and as a Nutritional Therapist who treats babies and young children, I am extremely concerned about the long-term (and short-term) affect of the prescribed medication they are taking.

Reflux medications act to reduce stomach acid production. This is fundamentally flawed as this very important bodily function is essential for immunity, food digestion and nutrient absorption.

So what is the alternative when you have a baby who is clearly distressed and having problems after feeding?

When I see babies with reflux there are usually a number of common issues present. Although all babies are individual here have been my observations over the years.

  1. The baby has been born under challenging and stressful circumstances, usually by c-section.
  2. There is a history of digestive issues in the family coupled with food allergy or intolerances.
  3. Formula milk has been used very early (prior to 6 weeks).
  4. Antibiotics have been administered in special baby care or prior to 8 weeks.
  5. The baby is cow’s milk intolerant.
  6. Eczema is present.

In my experience ruling out food intolerance and allergy is the first step. If a baby is breast fed it will mean looking in to the mother’s diet or if formula fed then trying a dairy and soya free formula may help. How many Doctor’s would do this first?

One of the best ways to help a baby with reflux is also to give probiotics. Many babies are now born with insufficient friendly bacteria. Being born by c-section contributes to this problem as does any antibiotic intake. Stress during pregnancy can also be a factor here.

If you have a baby with reflux I would urge you to get the right help. Find someone with experience so they can take a full medical history, test for intolerances and advise the best brand and dosage of probiotics. If you are at the weaning stage then my blog about weaning with reflux will also be useful. You can find it here.

If you are local to me (Whitstable, Kent) then I can help you. To make an appointment simply contact me via Julie@julieclarknutrition.co.uk

I found this great article which gives you some further information about reflux.

http://sarahockwell-smith.com/tag/infant-gaviscon/

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