Pregnancy and Parenting Features

What Is Silent Reflux?

Have you ever heard of silent reflux and believe your child is suffering from it? Basically, silent reflux occurs when your baby is actually spitting up but instead of the spit up leaving the mouth it is actually swallowed by the baby. Many parents thinks this sounds like the perfect solution to reflux because it is not messy. However, it is not the perfect solution at all and in fact it is actually a very dangerous condition when it is untreated. To make things worse, it is hard for doctors to confirm silent reflux is occurring, but if you think your baby has this condition you need to be persistent and until the doctor acknowledges and diagnoses your baby’s condition. Without a diagnosis your baby won’t get treatment that he/she needs to feel better.

Most pediatricians are accustomed to seeing certain side effects and symptoms that accompany reflux. However, silent reflux does not frequently have these symptoms and as a result doctors have a hard time diagnosing what is going on with your baby. When doctors see raw throats, hiccups, lots of vomiting and the like it is easy to diagnose reflux, however without these symptoms present it is hard to determine what is wrong with your baby. Two of the typical reflux symptoms are weight loss and vomit, however silent reflux sufferers generally eat more to soothe their pain and do not vomit so the key symptoms are not present.

If your baby suddenly begins crying during mealtime or even afterwards yet does not throw up or show any other reason for crying out then perhaps he is affected with silent reflux. The reason this condition is so painful is that the stomach acid rises into your baby’s throat burning all the way and is not expelled in vomit but instead is carried back down the throat to the stomach burning even more. This generally happens multiples times each day and obviously your baby’s throat will became raw and sore in no time. Another sign your baby might have silent reflux is if your baby has bad breath from vomiting and swallowing it without your notice, gags or chokes frequently, or burps more often than is normal.

If you believe your baby is suffering from any of the above symptoms then you should make an appointment with your pediatrician immediately. There are a couple of ways to change your daily habits and lifestyle that might help your baby’s silent reflux. Changes like putting rice cereal in formula to thicken it up, feeding less food more often, or simply changing formula just might be enough to make your baby feel better and suffer less.

Many times doctors won’t diagnose something they can’t see, but help the doctor and your baby out by recording how often your baby experiences silent reflux symptoms and what they are. If you have several weeks worth of silent reflux symptoms recorded then your doctor just might give your baby another evaluation to see if silent reflux really is the problem.

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