Saturday, January 14, 2012

Some natural relief for reflux and GERD

I met my cousin's sis-in-law at her wedding over a year ago and we quickly became fast friends because of our common interests in children and natural tendencies. Around six months ago, she had a beautiful baby girl. Unfortunately, the baby had horrible reflux and was diagnosed with GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease). The baby would be up all night with screaming, throwing up, etc., and it was truly miserable for them. My sweet friend did much research and found some natural ways to help her baby and I thought I would share them on the blog because GERD is becoming more and more common and I thought these tips might help someone else. My friend said that it did not completely "cure" GERD and they still struggle with it, but these techniques have given them about 60% improvement and have been enough to keep the baby off medication. Here is her advice; I hope it will be helpful to others:

1. I stopped feeding on demand. I had done this with my twins for 22 months. But with this baby, at least a night, I changed it to every three hours. This allowed her ample time to digest better.

2. We stopped rocking her to sleep in cradle position. We only do it with her upright.

3. I increased the amount of time I massage her. I have always massaged my babies after bath. With her, I am focusing on her stomach and lower back as well as accupoints (I have a this book that has accupoint information for babies).

4. I began to take her to the chiropractor twice a week, once a week, and now every other week.

5. I try to have chamomile and licorice root (very small amount) tea available (homebrewed) to give her a small amount when she is throwing up or crying a lot. This helps calm her and also pushes her to swallow which helps with the reflux. Sugar water is supposed to have the same effect but I really hate to use sugar on my baby!

6. She sleeps with the mattress tilted and she is sideways, not on her back. Also, she takes naps on her stomach (when I am awake and able to watch her.) I only do this when I am readily available to her since it is risky.