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Thread: Colic or Reflux?

  1. #1

    Default Colic or Reflux?

    I can't tell if my baby is having colic or reflux. He will scream in pain sometimes 2-3 mins into a feed. Or right after a feed. When he screams he arch his back n straightens his legs and will go very stiff. The only way to calm him to to put him upright on my shoulders. He spits out milk quite often (not too much, about one mouthful). Sometimes it's milk he has just taken, sometimes it looks like partially digested milk (liquid with small white chunks). It's extremely distressing to see him like that. This happens throughout the day. 70% of the time, I'll say. I always burp him. A lot. Sometimes he will give me a wet burp.
    Some information: he is 7 weeks + now
    He is on breast milk only.
    During the day he eats every 1-1.5 hours.
    I don't think I over feed him as he only drinks for around 5 min per feed! I'm always paranoid about him not having enough to eat!
    His outputs look ok to me. Lots of wets and poop everyday.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
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    New York
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    855

    Default Re: Colic or Reflux?

    i'm sorry to hear your LO is crying during and after his feedings. Colic is a type of crying that causes a mother distress but can occur in an otherwise healthy infant and then he out grows it. reflux is when the enzymes usually confined only to the stomach escape the stomach and leak up into the esophagus. Your pediatrician can diagnosis reflux if that is what is happening. reflux is more common in bottle fed babies and sometimes runs in families.
    DD#1 July 1986 VB
    DD#2 April 1988 c/sec
    DS#3 April 1990 VBAC
    DS#4 June 1993 VB
    and suprise!
    DD#5 April 2001 c/sec
    BTDT scars and stretchmarks,: wrinkles and grey hair

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
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    Default Re: Colic or Reflux?

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*minigingerbread View Post
    I can't tell if my baby is having colic or reflux.
    It doesn't sound like either to me. It could be that you have a lot of milk and so he's getting a lot of lactose, proportionally. Lactose is hard to digest and makes babies windy. Some babies even get green frothy or algae-like poo. What you are doing is what most mothers do. A lot also use bicycling the legs and other baby-massage type things. And a lot of time upright (for e.g. in a carrier rather than in a stroller between feeds). Other mothers de-latch baby at the beginning of the feed (at first let-down) so the first gush of high-lactose milk is caught in a diaper or cloth, then re-latching baby after that initial gush (so before the "scream of pain"). And there's also breast compression that can be used.

    Take a look at the description on these links for some ideas:

    http://kellymom.com/bf/got-milk/supp.../fast-letdown/

    http://www.llli.org/faq/oversupply.html


    -Michelle
    --
    MsheLLL

  4. #4

    Default Re: Colic or Reflux?

    Thank ladies. But I definitely do not have too much milk (though i wish to have more!) His poop is the yellow seedy type, not greenish. I guess that rules out too much foremilk. My pedi appt is next week. I wanted to find out from experienced moms before I see him! I read that babies will eventually out grow it but in the meantime I'm starting to dread feeding time!
    He is mostly breastfed, with 3 bottles of ebm given at night. I'm in the process of transitioning to eliminate the bottles at night...

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    New York
    Posts
    855

    Default Re: Colic or Reflux?

    you and your LO might experience more comfortable less distressing nursing sessions if you breastfed him at night rather than use the bottles of pumped milk.
    DD#1 July 1986 VB
    DD#2 April 1988 c/sec
    DS#3 April 1990 VBAC
    DS#4 June 1993 VB
    and suprise!
    DD#5 April 2001 c/sec
    BTDT scars and stretchmarks,: wrinkles and grey hair

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    10,440

    Default Re: Colic or Reflux?

    Could you have an overactive letdown?
    Susan
    Mama to my all-natural boys: Ian, 9-4-04, 11.5 lbs; Colton, 11-7-06, 9 lbs, in the water; Logan, 12-8-08, 9 lbs; Gavin, 1-18-11, 9 lbs; and an angel 1-15-06
    18+ months and for Gavin, born with an incomplete cleft lip and incomplete posterior cleft palate
    Sealed for time and eternity, 7-7-93
    Always babywearing, cosleeping and cloth diapering. Living with oppositional defiant disorder and ADHD. Ask me about cloth diapering and sewing your own diapers!

  7. #7

    Default Re: Colic or Reflux?

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*esthervegan View Post
    you and your LO might experience more comfortable less distressing nursing sessions if you breastfed him at night rather than use the bottles of pumped milk.
    Yes I will start doing that real soon. A few weeks ago I was under the impression that ep was the way to go...till I receive wonderful encouragement from ladies here to try ebf again... I want to make a gradual transition back to ebf and I think we're doing fine.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Colic or Reflux?

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*aprilsmagic View Post
    Could you have an overactive letdown?
    I don't think so because I'm very sure my milk is no where near oversupply. Overactive let down is related to oversupply right?

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    19,878

    Default Re: Colic or Reflux?

    Usually OALD stems from oversupply, but it is possible for rapid letdowns to occur without oversupply. The fact that your baby feeds very quickly- 5 minutes is fast for a 7 weeks old- and starts to cry 2-3 minutes into a feed does sort of suggest that he's having issues with letdowns. Either he's upset that the milk is flowing too fast or he actually likes fast flow and is upset that it has slowed down a bit.

    Not saying it's a certainty- just that it's suggestive.
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
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  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2011
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    Default Re: Colic or Reflux?

    The 5 minute feedings had me thinking OALD too. My son nursed only a few minutes at a time when he was little too. He was also fussy (particularly in the evenings), gassy, and spit up a lot. He would scream at the breast, go stiff, and arch his back. I definitely had oversupply back then, but his poops looked normal and I don't think the oversupply was our big problem. The problem was OALD, and I think that gulping milk so fast also with getting some air while gulping gave him lots of tummy trouble.

    Nursing reclined, one breast per nursing session, helped with some of his discomfort. We also bicycled his legs, gave tummy massages, and warm baths to help him feel better. We went two weeks where he had to have a bath every night or he would not stop screaming!

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