View Full Version : Rice cereal in bottle
10-04-2004, 06:22 PM
My DS is a HEAVY spitter. We've tried Enfamil AR without great results, and the pediatrician doesn't think he has reflux since he isn't fussy and is gaining weight *very* well (16.4 lbs. at 3 months!) She suggested adding 2 Tbsp. of rice cereal to his 4 oz. bottles. Has anyone else tried this, and what kind of results did you have? Not only with spit up, but also weight gain, constipation, etc.? I know its a little early to start him on solids, but the ped. hoped this would help with spit up, as well as lengthening the time between feedings. (He will only go 2 1/2 hours during the day.) Any thoughts appreciated!
10-04-2004, 06:38 PM
No!!!!! Not a good idea. His little belly is way too immature for solids unless he's exhibiting signs of being ready (grabbing your food, being able to sit up unassisted, etc.) Cereal in a bottle is outdated advice. If the child is really ready for solids, it should be made to a soupy consistency and fed with a spoon.
There is also no guarantee that rice cereal will stop the spitting up. A LOT of babies do it. It's annoying. That's it, nothing more, unless he's in pain. Sophie had reflux (she was on Zantac) and spit up most of her meals at EVERY feeding for the first eight months. It's a hassle and you do a lot of laundry. You just grab another bottle and start over again. He may very well also have what is called silent reflux. The esophageal sphincter in a lot of babies just hasn't strengthened yet. The meds for reflux don't STOP the spitting up, only the pain associated with it, BTW.
We had better luck with ready to feed formula (instead of the powdered we had been using). Both were Similac. There's also no need to start switching around formulas. That in and of itself can cause a sore belly. If he's able to tolerate the Enfamil (no gassiness, fussiness or diahrrea), then stick with it.
Try stopping between every few ounces to burp your DS. This helped us. Air that gets buried still has to make it's way up. If there's more formula on top, it just erupts up and out. Babies his age generally eat every 2-4 hours, so I don't understand what your Ped's concern is. Some babes just have smaller bellies. Is your DS crying from hunger?
I suggest looking for a more up to date Ped and buying a bunch of good bibs and burp cloths!
10-04-2004, 07:43 PM
I'm with the PP 100% - adding cereal to the bottle is a bad idea in general, and spitting up is pretty normal even when it's heavy.
As far as time between feedings goes, DS was getting fed every 2 1/2 to 3 hours until he was more than 4 mos old, and even when we introed solids, he still was BF every 4 hours. It took a LONG time for him to go longer between feedings, and he wasn't a spitter at all.
I'd go look for a more up-to-date ped if I got this advice - it goes against pretty much all of the books I've read, and I've read a lot, and again, spitting up, even lots of spitting up, is pretty normal.
DS - Nathan, 12/29/03
10-04-2004, 08:19 PM
I have to agree with everyone and add that our little guy is a spitter. He's always done a lot of spitting up - sometimes to the point where it seemed he lost everything he'd just eaten! (He never did, but it sure looked like it.)
Even now, at 11 months old, he still spits up probably 8-10 times per day. (Usually on me, in the morning, after I've gotten ready for work.) He eats lots of solids, including rice cereal, and they don't really seem to have helped. I think he's just gradually growing out of it - so there is hope for you! ;)
10-04-2004, 08:30 PM
schuyler spit up A LOT at EVERY feeding until he was about 10 months old. so i truly emphathize. but since it sounds like your DS doesn't have a medical problem that causes him to spit up, like mine didn't, i would not go to a dangerous length to make him stop. adding cereal to a bottle can be a choking hazard, in addition to the future digestive problems early solids can cause (as well as other things.) i KNOW it is annoying and very inconvienient. but if it doesn't bother him, then i would advise that you just buy more burp cloths and bibs. ;)
ETA: and i hear ya- schuyler was 18 pounds at 16 weeks. he ate every 3 hours until about 3-4 months old. i EBF, so i don't really know, but would he eat a little more at each feeding? or does that just make him spit up the extra in addition to the normal spit up?
10-04-2004, 10:09 PM
*ducks for cover*
I did it starting about 10 -12 weeks, after trying the AR formula too. Both the ped and the gastro doctor suggested it. I was very aware of the conflict in doing it, but for us it worked. I didn't start with 2 Tbsp, I started off with 2-3 teaspoons in a 5-6 oz bottle. It worked graet and cut her spiiting up down by over half. So I was only changing 3-4 outfits/shirts a day. Which was good enough for me. I think I started with 2 bottles a day and worked up to having it in every other bottle.
She was born at 42 weeks and was off the charts and stayed off the charts, but her weight gain stayed right on the same curve as "normal". Heck I was excited when she was actually on the the chart for weight around 6 months for like a half a second LOL.
No constipation issues for us, but like I said I started slow. Obviously it is a very controversial issue, but hey I didn't want you to feel alone.
10-04-2004, 11:14 PM
DD has reflux and is being treated with Prilosec. Before she was put on meds we tried everything... AR formula, and putting cereal in her bottle did absolutely nothing!! She still is a heavy spitter but I have realized that we just have to wait it out (she had an Upper GI and results came back totally normal) She wears bibs all day long and I almost always have a spit up cloth over my shoulder!
10-05-2004, 01:15 AM
Ditto. Our little DD is a regular spitter upper. It started with every feeding when we brought DD home and calmed down the last couple of weeks to about 2-3 times a day. Ocassionally our DD will nail me as I'm trying to walk out the door with her! So we invested in 30+ bibs and lot of burp clothes, beats changing her 10 times a day. Also, our DD started to drool like crazy around 3 months so the bibs are working overtime! Something to think about - the new recommendation from AAP is 6 months for solids. Before messing with your DS stomach, I would get a second opinion since it's not a health issue.
have a blessed day
Edit Note: I just wanted to add that my DD is almost 5 months and she eats every 2.5 to 3 hours during the day but she does sleep 9 hours straight at night so you eventually get a break from around the clock feedings :)
My fist born started ceral around 10 or 12 weeks, at the suggestion of my ped. He was not a spitter but eating every 2 to 3 hours around the clock and about 32oz of formula a day (he did this until about 8 months, regardless of what he was eating....). I fed him a pretty watery mixture off a spoon. I think I switched to barley pretty quickly because it seemed the rice wa binding. If you are going to do it I'd spoon feed rather than bottles. Less problems with nipples clogging and easier for you to control. If he doesn't take to it you can always stop.
For the record, it did not seem to help much in terms of lengthening time btwn feedings, but he seemed to enjoy it and it did not cause any problems.
I would not do it without the advice of a knowledgeable and up-to-date pediatric GI doc, and I don't think you would find many (if any) who would recommend it in your case.
Adding cereal to bottles is a rarely-used (for a reason!) solution to a problem of reflux that is not responding to other therapy and is causing a lot of pain or poor weight gain. The potential risks of cereal in a bottle include choking. Potential risks of cereal given prematurely (before 4 months at a minimum, most literature/docs/the AAP recommend not until 6 months) include digestive problems, future allergies or atopy, abnormally faster weight gain (which is associated with problems in adolescence and adulthood) and possibly diabetes (link has been demonstrated in high risk kids).
I'd weigh all your options -- personally, as long as he is gaining weight and just has physiologic spitting-up, I would not want to take the long-term risks.
PREGNANT! EDD 6/9/03
mama to Jack 6/6/03
Breastfeeding 15 months and counting
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