Unsettled and refluxy

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Unsettled and refluxy

Postby Melzy11 » Fri 26 Apr, 2013 4:17 pm

I've got an 11wk old bub who suffers from reflux and colic. Until recently, we've used 'natural' over the counter meds to regulate the issue. She slept fine at night to make up for not sleeping during the day. Since the over the counter meds stopped working we were advised to put her on Losac. She now has disrupted night sleep, rarely naps during the day and is still irritable. To top it off, she hates being in pram and car capsule so it's impossible to leave the house without distressing her. Has anyone got any tips on how to manage this? It's been tough going.
Ps. She won't take a dummy either. Yay!
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Re: Unsettled and refluxy

Postby NgalaOnline » Mon 29 Apr, 2013 10:36 pm

Hi Melzy11

Thank you for your post. It does sound like you have been having a difficult time. Caring for a newborn and adjusting to parenthood is a very stressful time for many, and having added issues such as reflux can make it an even more difficult time.

With limited information via a forum it is difficult to know what is happening with your baby and to offer appropriate information. It may be quite helpful for you to ring the helpline to receive more comprehensive advice in relation to your baby.

Reflux can be a difficult issue to diagnose in newborn babies due to the fact that unsettled behaviour, vomiting and the appearance of abdominal pains are all common issues experienced by many newborns as part of their normal development. It is often difficult to determine with young babies when these behaviours are normal and when they are related to something more such as reflux. Where possible it is best to try to get help from a paediatrician in diagnosing and managing reflux. The over the counter medications available generally do not effectively treat gastrooesophageal reflux, so if your baby was obtaining relief from these medications it is possible that she is suffering from colic and newborn unsettledness moreso rather than reflux. Some babies with reflux may not respond favorably at first to the medications they are prescribed. If this is the case and your baby is showing signs of reflux such as stiffening body movements, back arching, high pitched and distressed screaming that occurs during many parts of the day, resistance to feeding and an increase in unsettled behaviour following feeds then it would be worthwhile returning to your medical practitioner and discussing this with your doctor. Some babies may require an adjustment to their medication before relief is obtained from reflux.

Around 3 months of age is also a time when many babies do begin to experience disrupted sleep due to the emergence of sleep associations. After around 12 weeks of age many babies begin to sleep poorly if they have a learned way of falling asleep that they can not replicate for themselves (such as being rocked or fed to sleep) as they do not know how to resettle themselves into the next stage of sleep and therefore often will only have short sleeps that leave them overtired. If you feel that this may apply to your baby's sleep you may like to seek some help with sleep and settling through the Ngala helpline, or you may find it helpful to read through posts contained on this forum. It is best to only begin teaching sleep and settling strategies when a baby is free from pain and is well, however, so if you have concerns that your baby may be continuing to experience unrelieved pain it would be advisable to consult your doctor for more help before commencing on teaching new ways to sleep.

If your baby is showing frequent signs of being overtired and irritable it is helpful to pay very close attention to her early tired signs and attempt to settle her as soon as you see them. Early tired signs include starring, glazy eyes and avoiding eye contact. These signs are subtle but often appear before the later tired signs of grizzling, yawning, eye rubbing or jerky movements. Often late tired signs indicate that a baby is already overtired and more likely to have difficult going to and remaining asleep. Trying to get your baby to bed after shorter than usual awake periods (such as between an hour to an hour and a half) may be helpful if your baby is only catnapping and showing frequent signs of being overtired.

I hope that this information is helpful. If you do feel that emerging external sleep associations could be the cause of your baby's sleep difficulties and you would like more help in managing these please write back or ring the Ngala helpline.
This information is general in nature and should not be used as a substitute for the personalized assistance that can be received from the Ngala Helpline by telephone.

For families residing in Western Australia you can also contact the
Ngala Helpline
Telephone 9368 9368 or 1800 111 546 for country access
Available 7 days a week, 8am to 8pm
or request a callback online http://www.ngala.com.au/Ngala-and-You/Ngala-Helpline/Contact-Ngala-Helpline-Online

For helplines in other Australian states please follow this link
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