Children with GERD: Plan and Prepare for the Upcoming Day

Tracy Davenport, Ph.D. Health Guide
  • One of the things that makes caring for a baby or a child with acid reflux so difficult is the fact that you have to plan ahead for just about everything. Before you leave your house, you have to have the required medicine, food that can be tolerated, wipes you may need if he or she has projectile reflux and a change of clothes for both of you if reflux does happen. That’s just to go to the local bank. We’ll save traveling across country for another time.

    And who could blame us for thinking so far ahead? The stuff related to this illness is so real. For example, what if your baby is still taking medicine in grade school, and he or she has to go to the nurse every day? Or, how will you help your child if all of his friends insist on going to the pizza place in town with absolutely nothing on the menu that he can eat? After all, seeking independence is one of the hallmarks of adolescence. One must assume bad food choices will be a given for teenagers with reflux. And, I don’t know about you, but each time a new restaurant comes to our little town, I find myself sarcastically saying, “Oh good, one more place where my son will never be able to eat.”

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    But when does too much worrying and thinking ahead become detrimental?

    No one has that answer. It is all very personal. For me though, if I think too far ahead, those thoughts just paralyze me. When this happens, I find these futuristic thoughts are no longer helpful to me or to my child. It is at this point that I have to find a way to slow things down so I can concentrate on the caregiving tasks required of me today.

    If you find yourself looking too far into the future, think about these three things:

    1) If you are reading Web sites like this one, you are probably well ahead of the game as far as learning as much as you can about acid reflux.

    2) The science of reflux is changing very rapidly. It wasn’t long ago, that this Web site would have been called “Colic” or “Over-Anxious Mothers.”

    3) Friends and families are becoming much more educated about GI issues in general. No doubt, this understanding will translate into more tolerance and support for all of us.

Published On: March 26, 2007