Acid reflux disease can cause a host of issues for an infant. One of the most frustrating and scary issues parents may face is that of food refusal. We take for granted that our infants will eat. When they don't it can make every feeding seem like an insurmountable task.
For children with severe food refusal the first thing that needs to be addressed is whether they are maintaining proper hydration. This is because infants can get dehydrated quickly. If you notice your child is not wetting as many diapers as usual, does not have as much saliva or is not making tears when they cry then your child might be dehydrated. Please get your child evaluated by a medical professional because dehydration is a serious issue if it is not treated immediately.
Failure to thrive is often a concern with children who have frequent issues with food refusal. Failure to thrive occurs when the child does not get enough nourishment to gain weight or grow as expected. It can also be diagnosed when a child drops off of the growth curve or drastically changes their percentile ranking for weight gain or growth. Most often this is defined as being below the 3rd percentile.
Most babies should get an average of 2.5 ounces of milk per pound of body weight each day. That means that a ten pound baby should consume approximately 25oz of milk per day. Some children will consume more and some will consume less. If your child is drastically lower than this number the pediatrician should be made aware of the problem.
While there are no cut and dry answers as to why this happens to some infants with reflux and not all of them there are definitely some theories. Most believe that these children have learned to associate their feedings with pain. In my next blog I will discuss tips for dealing with food refusal in your acid reflux baby.
Published On: March 05, 2012