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Acid Reflux In Children - Helpful Resources
There are studies that show Gastroesophageal Reflux (GER), usually referred to as acid reflux is not a unique thing in children of any age. Acid reflux in children and babies are quite common. In fact, over seven million American children have acid reflux. The underdeveloped digestive systems in children make them more susceptible to the disorder. When children reach the age of two, the reflux should be better and may be gone. If you realize that the condition in your child is not gone and is instead getting worse, you need to call your child's doctor.
Describing Acid Reflux in Children
Acid reflux occurs when the stomach contents and the acid that it makes go back up into the esophagus. The acid causes irritation and pain to the esophagus. It may also force the food to come out of the mouth of the child. A child may vomit with force or experience a wet burp that does not come all the way out of the mouth.
Symptoms of Acid Reflux in Children
There are many different symptoms that can present themselves with acid reflux in children. The common symptoms of acid reflux in children are pain, irritability, vomiting or spitting up, sudden crying, colic symptoms, not able to eat, not sleeping right, wet burps and bad breath.
Less known symptoms of acid reflux in children are problems with swallowing, gagging, choking, sore throat, not gaining weight, losing weight, hoarseness, bronchitis, asthma, pneumonia, loud breathing, sinus infections, lots of saliva, drooling and neck arching.
Complications of Acid Reflux in Children
Young babies will spit up (regurgitate) a little of the milk you give them; this is common. However, heartburn and esophagitis will make this regurgitation a problem that needs attention. Heartburn is the burning sensation you feel when acid comes from the stomach to the esophagus. Esophagitis is the swelling and reddening of the esophagus because of the acid reflux. It not only hurts; it also makes eating difficult. Bleeding from the esophagus can happen if the condition becomes severe. This will cause poor growing habits, not swallowing right, problems breathing and tooth decay in babies.
Treating Acid Reflux in Children
There are different treatments available for acid reflux in children. Children usually outgrow the acid reflux by one year of age. You will need to learn how to position and feed your baby in order to give him or her relief from the pain. Getting your child in an upright position will let him or her digest food better. Gravity will help to keep things where they are supposed to be. Burping your child more and not feeding your child with foods high in fats will also help. In some cases, acid reflux medication may be needed. In severe cases, a child may need stronger acid reflux medications or surgery.
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