It must worry you to see your baby throw up milk after she has been well fed and satisfied. The regurgitation of milk is a normal condition called posseting and there’s nothing really to it that should cause worry.
What is posseting?
When a baby involuntarily and repeatedly throws up small quantities of milk and stomach acid right after feeding, it is called posseting. It often occurs when the baby is being winded.
What causes posseting?
Babies as young as three weeks old or younger usually have inadequately developed Lower Esophageal Sphincter or LOS. The LOS in adults and older babies normally closes once the food enters the stomach. This prevents the food from moving back in to the esophagus.
New born babies have a weak LOS that does not function to its optimum efficiency. The abdominal pressure forces open the LOS and the milk and the gastric acid regurgitate right back into the mouth.
How long does it last?
How long posseting lasts will vary from baby to baby, but it generally follows a pattern.
Each cycle of posseting occurs for a while after feeding and can continue till the next time you feed her. For babies under 3 months old, posseting is normal. It is usually considered harmless and stops by itself when the baby develops strong enough muscles. But if your baby begins to posset in large quantities, you should consult your pediatrician, because she might then be suffering from a condition called Gastro Esophageal Reflux Disease or GERD.
What can you do?
You can easily handle your baby’s posseting. All you need to do is add an extra dollop of care and gentleness while feeding her and especially when you are winding her.
Be gentle: Raise her head very gently to when you lay her down after her feed. This will prevent the milk from being thrown back out. Also, this means you should avoid changing your baby’s nappy right after you have fed her.
Feed frequently: You should feed your baby at smaller intervals in smaller quantities. This will also minimize the abdominal pressure that all the more compels milk and acid to regurgitate.
Keep your baby upright while feeding and rub her back post feeding till she burps.
Stay calm: Posseting looks and sounds like it could give you a lot of worry, but stay calm and do the needful and soon your baby will grow out of it.
Posseting is part of your baby’s growing up. Just stay calm and handle the situation with care.