View Full Version : Arching back, craning neck, could this be formula gas?
I'm just curious about your thoughts on this. It's my second kid, so I'm not panicked, just wondering the thoughts of all the Mom's out there.
OK, so my newborn daughter is now 4 1/2 weeks old. She was delivered 16 days early, by emergency c-section, so she might be gestationally only 2 1/2 days old - not sure if that's true for us or not and if it's a factor here? She is a very content baby - doesn't cry really at all until she's letting us know she's hungry. Never screams, never unconsolable crying.
Lately, she's been arching her back agressively and craning her neck back (way back) when she goes to eat - more so in the evening. And, she's passes a lot of gas - with a bit force of behind it. Burps well and often during eating (ever ounce or so). She was this way all along - and she never cries or screams, but it's getting progressively more pronounced and she's getting more uncooperative at night to the point it's tricky to get the bottle to her mouth. She's still pooping about once every 24 hours - so that's normal. Sometimes she gets to the point where she snacks instead of eating her usual every 3 hours. The advice nurse at our ped said that might be b/c she feels better b/c she relieves her digestive system and burps or passes gas.
1) Do you think this is just a bunch of gas?
2) If so, do you think it might be the formula (we're on similac advance - might be too rich or have the DHA/ARA additives? She's not allergic)? It's not the bottle b/c we've switched that and she's sucks well from the bottle. BTW, I can't breast feed b/c of a medication I take that passes through breast milk.
3) How about mylicon drops? We heard from friends that they were just sugar water and didn't need them with our first daughter, but I'll take experience if you've used them?
4) Do you think her digestive system still might be settling down b/c she's still gestationally young?
Any other thoughts? Again, I feel like we're lucky b/c she doesn't cry, but just want to be sure she's comfortable.
03-15-2004, 10:48 PM
It sounds like reflux to me. Abigail did that. Her symptoms were aggravated by dairy, so maybe another formula would work better for you? But it really does ring the reflux bell for me.
Mom to Abigail Rose
03-15-2004, 10:49 PM
OOPS! And Alexa, congrats on her birth!
Mom to Abigail Rose
03-15-2004, 11:55 PM
GRIPE WATER!!!! Whole foods has it or check here http://www.babys-bliss.com/. Mylicon didn't help and was so expensive. Do a search for Gripe Water for more info. It was a lifesaver in my house! And bicycle her knees into her belly when she's lying down...it will help her to pass gas. ....And congratulations on the new baby!
Mommy to Kayla
Sounds like reflux to me too. You should speak to your doctor because if it's reflux there are treatment options. We used Similac Advance from the beginning and did not have similar issues.
Hi - thx for the thoughts. I thought reflux involved some serious spitting up (or some more serious form of rejection of dairy - breast milk or formula)?? Am I off and it could just cause discomfort and gas? She doesn't spit up at all. How is that characterized as different from lactose intolerance then?
I tried the Mylicon drops tonight (WAY expensive...had no idea!) and I'll also order/try the Gripe Water. It's also tricky because she is much more comfortable sleeping with pressure on her tummy. When she naps on me, she's horizontal against my chest/tummy on her tummy - sort of slung around me - or vertical against my chest facing in towards me. I think that makes her more comfortable, but there is no way to reproduce that when she sleeps in her crib. She digs the swing (once she's asleep) but that is still on her back. Sad for us b/c the tummy pressure definitely stretches out her sleeping.
Other question - we're HUGE fans of Happiest Baby on the Block techniques. Worked like a charm for Maeve, my first, and is working for Charlotte. Perhaps that's why she's NOT crying despite all this tummy stuff going on. BUT, do you think swaddling her at night contributes to gas discomfort? I don't think it should, but I did notice that she can't as easily pull her legs up to pass gas? I don't know - I'm just trying to consider all the angles here.
I've got NO idea on any of this (if that isn't obvious) because Maeve ate like a champ - always ate well and never spit up or had gas problems. I suppose this is just the beginning lessons for a 2nd time Mom - don't compare and prepare for the unexpected!
Thanks in advance -
p.s. I haven't updated my avatar but since I can't help myself, I did attach a picture of my two girls. Maeve is now 20 months and Charlotte is 1 month (although the pic was taken when Charlotte was 6 days and Maeve was 19 mos, 6 days!)
03-16-2004, 07:42 AM
The arching is what really sounds like reflux. Abby never spit up, but has struggled with reflux off and on since she was a few months old. Silent reflux involves the heartburn feeling for babies without the spitting up. It's very common in early babies, too, and it hurts. Pressure on the tummy does help, and some reflux babies have to sleep tummy-down. There is a product called a Tucker Sling which I would have paid double for if I'd discovered it when Abby was a newborn. You can see it at www.tuckersling.com-- great for reflux and for safely keeping baby belly-down.
And OMG, your little ones are just precious!
Mom to Abigail Rose
Hi again -
Gosh, the symptoms for reflux sound so much more severe than Charlotte's behaviors/problems. Did anyone's DD or DS have a mild version that didn't cause the massive spit ups or generally MAJOR eating and overall unhappiness? I feel like she'd cry more, though it does say there can be very mild cases.
It's good advice to take to ask my ped though. We're supposed to follow up in a day or two to see if the Mylicon drops or other changes helped.
Thx for all your thoughts -
03-16-2004, 01:50 PM
Abby's started as quite mild but git worse. She never spit up, though. It's worth following up on because if she's refluxing, it can damage her esophogus in ways that become quite painful over time. That's what usually causes the food avoidance kinds of problems.
Mom to Abigail Rose
03-16-2004, 04:18 PM
My DD had something similar to what you are describing around 1-2 mos. She arched her back while feeding in the late afternoon and evening, but she also cried. I was mostly breastfeeding at the time, but was giving her 1 bottle of formula a day. At our 2 mos. appointment my pediatrician suggested that I put a little bit of cereal (a tiny bit) in her bottle. I know this is not usually recommended, but it worked wonders for us. I stopped breast feeding when she was 3 mos. and continued to put a bit of cereal in her bottles. As to the amount it was small enough that it would fit through the nipple without any alteration. My ped did advice us that opening up the nipple hole could be dangerous.
I only fed her cereal under my pediatrician's orders, as I really trust her. Maybe you can talk to your ped about this alternative.
03-16-2004, 10:33 PM
Leah is having similar symptoms but she is bf. it has just started in the past few days. we have noticed that her burps sound wet but nothing hardly ever comes out and she usually does not complain. after some down time she will just start crying skipping the fussy build up stage. and when we pick her up she tends to arch and keep her head up and back. is there anywhere we can find out more about silent reflux w/o seeing the ped first? thx for the help.
and Leah Grace 1/19/04
03-17-2004, 12:59 AM
I'm agreeing with Rachel on this one. Carson has Reflux and it started around 4 or five weeks. He was spitting up, but what really alarmed me was the back arching and craning of the neck. What threw me was that he is such a happy baby. You'd never know that he was in pain, except for the arches.
Around this 8 or 9 weeks, I started supplementing formula once a day. there was no difference between formula and bf in this area. He still arched. What really stopped it was at 10 weeks the ped prescribed Zantac. He was on it twice a day and the arches literally stopped. Now I don't give it to him as often, just when he has painful days, like today, actually.
Congrats on Charlotte's birth (I love her name!!) It'll get better :)
03-17-2004, 03:27 AM
Let's hear it for Zantac! My first was a "happy spitter" who spat up constantly, but BF no problem. I went off dairy for 6 mos (ugh - talk about a quick way to lose pregnancy pounds) which helped somewhat, but the Zantac was the best.
My second was more of a silent refluxer - not nearly as much spitting, but considerably more comfortable, especially for sleeping, on Zantac.
p.s. The stuff tastes nasty! It's a strong mint taste. With my first, we would get it flavor rx in grape, but this turned out to be a mistake b/c it had to be refrigerated & only lasted 1 month at a time. With #2, we got him used to the regular icky flavor & he now takes it without any trouble!
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