Pain associated with untreated acid reflux can cause babies to display long periods of inconsolable crying, wakefulness leading to sleep deprivation, and distressed and avoidant feeding behaviour resulting in poor growth.
One of the lesser known (and obviously less frequent) consequences of severe gastroesophageal reflux disease (GORD) is the need to tube feed some children. Babies can learn very quickly that the act of feeding hurts and as a result will refuse to feed. Despite the notion that feeding should be instinctual, there are some instincts that take precedence, like preserving oxygen flow or avoiding pain.
I have two little boys who mean the world to both my husband and I, they are our everything and yes this sounds clichéd but I cannot imagine our life without them. They are both our little IVF miracles and we still can’t believe just how lucky we are.
My name is Fran, and I have two children, Carmen and Flynn.
My pregnancy with Carmen was a fun one. I followed all the ‘rules’ regarding eating, chemicals and the works. I had to give up work fairly early into my pregnancy as I had incredibly bad exhaustion, fluid retention and all-day sickness. Pretty good start to that beautiful glowing pregnancy that all those books rave about. I have a bicronate uterus and she turned breech at 32 weeks: one foot under her chin and one in my pelvis, apparently a less than two percent chance of this happening!
I’ll start with the good news … even though we were told that there was virtually no chance Jordan (now 12 weeks old) wouldn’t have severe reflux and food issues like his sister, I really haven’t seen much evidence of either of them. He reacts a little to a couple of foods (tomato, spicy foods, etc) but that’s pretty common, and while he vomits constantly he doesn’t seem to be in pain, and on the odd bad day, we just use Mylanta. Plus he’s thriving at about 7kg!
Belle’s issues were a little more complex, but she’s a bright, bubbly and very energetic little girl and coming up to 3.5 years. She stopped feeding altogether between about 5 and 7 weeks of age, and was tubed at 7 weeks. We were told it would be for 48 hours, but we ended up tube feeding for 2.5 years. After a year on the NG tube, and lots of admissions, they did a couple ofoperations to set up a PEG and then Mic‐key button [low profile tube].