Acid reflux is an unpleasant, painful experience for anyone that experiences it. When babies suffer, it can be especially difficult for parents to manage. Gas build-up from taking on too much air during feeding can make acid reflux commonplace in babies.
While babies eventually grow out of acid reflux and colic, there are various choices of bottles that help alleviate the conditions during the child’s first few months.
A spokeswoman for parental guidance website MumeeMagic offered some advice for parents with babies suffering from acid reflux. “Altering a child’s position is the first step”, she said. “Putting the child in a more upright position means they take less air on board during their feeds. Propping them up with cushions or pillows can ease the pressure on your arm. Regularly burping them during a feed is also essential to get rid of any air that is consumed”.
There are also different types of baby bottle designed to alleviate acid reflux. These bottles and their nipples are designed to allow different amounts of food to the baby. “There are lots of choices of bottle specifically for acid reflux relief”, the spokeswoman continued. “They come in various different shapes and sizes to suit the baby’s size and feeding habits”.
Baby bottles reduce the likelihood of acid reflux by reducing the air the baby takes in during feeds. Whereas regular bottles create air bubbles that are ingested by the child as they take their food, specially designed bottles reduce bubbles and maximize flow.
There are a lot of claims from bottle manufactures about being able to reduce air bubbles and increase food flow. Cutting across the noise and figuring out which bottles actually do what they claim is the important part for parents.
Looking at the design features is the best place to start. “Although there are many different shapes out there, baby bottles generally come in two different styles – regular or angled. Traditional style bottles tend to rely on vents to reduce the build-up of air pockets. Wider bottles can also improve flow.”
“Where it gets tricky for parents to evaluate what works and what doesn’t is angled bottles. All sorts of weird and wonderful designs have been created to try to alleviate acid reflux or colic. From silicone pouches that collapse as the baby drinks through to different types of nipple, everything has been tried!”
“Vents are usually an effective way of reducing trapped air, but they can be a little high maintenance. If they are not cleaned properly, air bubbles can still occur. On the other hand if the seal is not fitted in exactly the right location, leaks can happen.”
There is no secret formula for finding the right bottle to reduce the likelihood of a baby suffering from acid reflux. Sometimes parents simply need to apply some trial and error to see what works for their baby. From the angle or ventilation of the bottle to the material of the nipple, it may pay to experiment with some different combinations.
MumeeMagic is an online resource center for parents. The parental website helps mothers and fathers research important topics and the right products for their babies right up to their teenage years. It includes advice on everything from toys to bottles, and encourages parents to participate as well as read reviews.