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Almost all babies spit up, especially newborns. Spitting up
decreases once the muscles of the
esophagus, the muscular tube that connects the throat
to the stomach, become more coordinated. This process can take as little as 6
months or as long as 1 year.
If your baby
starts spitting up after every feeding, there may be a problem with the way he
or she is being fed. He or she may be swallowing too much air when sucking, or
you may not be burping the baby enough during feedings. Fever will sometimes
cause a baby to spit up.
Milk (lactose) intolerance and food allergies also can
cause increased spitting up. Other signs of these problems include loose and
watery stools, irritability, and belly pain.
should not be confused with vomiting. Vomiting is forceful and repeated.
Spitting up may seem forceful but usually occurs shortly after feeding, is
effortless, and causes no discomfort. A baby may spit up for no reason at all.
Vomiting may be due to a more serious problem, such as
pyloric stenosis or
gastroesophageal reflux disease. If you think your
baby is vomiting, contact your doctor.
The following tips may
help your baby to spit up less often. If this advice does not reduce the
frequency of spitting up, contact your doctor.
June 17, 2011
William H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine & H. Michael O'Connor, MD - Emergency Medicine
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