desperate for sleep

Mary Lynn - posted on 08/19/2009 ( 9 moms have responded )

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My 4 month old has reflux, and I need some suggestions to get some sleep at night. I am back at work and sometimes getting up 3 and 4 times a night to sooth his reflux pains. He will wake up screaming, I'll pick him up and he'll burp or spit then go back to sleep most of the time. When I do feed him at night, I hold him for 30 minutes to an hour to keep him upright. Don't know how much longer I can go on with not getting rest.



He's on zantac and prevacid and we're scheduled to see the GI specialist soon. Sleeping on his tummy and the mattress is elevated on one end.



Any other suggestions?

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Jennifer - posted on 12/30/2009

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THat pisses me off...sorry, this an an older post, but I can't believe Dr's are still blaming the mother's for their child's sleep problems (due to reflux). Ya, as if we can train a child not to be sick! Ya RIGHT!

So sorry you are not sleeping. It's been 2 years for us, and we're very tired. Our newborn sleeps waaayyyy better than our reflux child.
It's so tough.
I look forward to a new ped GI moving into our area, because we had the same experience with our Drs.

Mary Lynn - posted on 09/10/2009

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We actually had 2 good nights in a row where he slept from 8-12 and 12 to 6 and yesterday 12-7. Last night he was up at 3:30 =( The good thing is that his reflux is better, at least he can cope with it better, and at night he will eat and go right back to sleep. I am glad to say that things ARE getting better. We also found out that he was allergic to soy, so once we stopped giving him the cereal with soy in it, things got much better.

Karen - posted on 09/10/2009

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Try Putting him to bed on his left side, I know it is hard to get them to stay there, but it helped my son

User - posted on 08/23/2009

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I'm sorry that you didn't get a very good gi, unfortunately there are plenty of them out there. I'm glad to hear the oatmeal is helping some, and yes, smaller, more frequent feedings to tend to help a lot with reflux babies. But that is a very good problem to have, where a lot of reflux babies refuse to eat, and lose weight. That is one thing that some GIs seem to think is the only time there is a problem with a reflux baby :(

I'm SOO glad you're able to get some help from family, many times that's not available! (my family lives almost 2000 miles away... ) That is so wonderful to hear that you have some help available. When you get to that point of shear exhaustion and frustration, it can be very helpful to have someone to hand the baby too so you can take a few minutes, shower, talk a walk, take a nap.

As for elevating the mattress, there are a couple of options- one is making a 'nest' here is a link with directions and some pictures http://www.kidshealthsupport.com/forums/...
Otherwise there are wedges you can buy or make, and slings and such that keep the baby in place here is a link with pictures of a homemade sling, but you can purchase similar ones called tucker slings http://www.kidshealthsupport.com/forums/... sometimes you can purchase them off of ebay for a discounted price, Tucker slings some in two styles, one that attaches to the mattress of an elevated crib, or ones that attach to a foam wedge that you can also purchase. There is a great website that sells a few different products http://www.pollywogbaby.com/ Also, for my first daughter, before we had her custom wedge made, she slept in a bouncer seat in her bed. With us it was imperative that we had her elevated enough because she had repeated ALTEs, where she would reflux, choke on it, and stop breathing. Some people have their infants sleep in an infant seat, although sometimes that can put more pressure on their tummies and make it worse.

I hope you're able to find something that works, it might be worth a try to just give the zantac at night before bed (but at least two hours after the prevacid). And putting mylanta in each bottle would be highly unadvisable, as the mylanta can make the prevacid ineffective. And if you feel you still need more help from a dr, and you are very unhappy with this first gi, ask for a referral from your ped to go see another one. It's not uncommon to need to see more then one to find a good 'match'.

And please feel free to come check out that link I sent you, join, and ask questions! There are many more people there ay have more ideas and suggestions for you then I have!!

Mary Lynn - posted on 08/23/2009

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The GI appointment was a complete waste of time. The only other thing she suggested was to add Mylanta to every bottle... then she suggested we read a book-- "The happiest baby on the block" My husband and I just looked at each other and could not believe we wasted our time and money on that one!



Tyler seems to be eating more since we've switched the oatmeal to the brand without soy, so I am wondering if that is helping. I've been feeding him more often and not more quantity and see if that will help. The problem with reflux and a full belly is that it can be uncomfortable for him. We've also stopped the zantac all together b/c it was not helping at all.



We've been recruiting help from family the past few nights because my husband is sick and I am completely exhausted. We are just hoping that all of this will pass soon. My husband is convinced that we are having no more children after what we are experiencing with our first =( Thanks for all the tips and suggestions. I am going to try elevating his mattress some more, but worried because he moves around a lot in his sleep. We'll see how this goes.



Thanks again!

User - posted on 08/21/2009

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How much is his mattress elevated? It generaly doesn't do a whole lot for reflux kiddos unless they're elevated at least 30 degrees, often times 45 degrees. (and yes there are products out there that help keep them IN bed, and not and the foot of the bed, lol). Also, some kiddos do better on their stomach, but some do not. Sleeping on their stomach can put additional pressure on their tummies, and make them reflux more. My youngest sleeps on her side, sleeping on their left side is supposed to make the LES (the connection from the esophagus to the stomach) elevated above the rest of the stomach, therefore reducing the amount of reflux. It also always made me feel better knowing she would have an easier time clearing her mouth of anything she spit up or puked while sleeping.

Is there a reason that they have you using the 30mg solutabs rather then halving the 15s? I know it is hard to even get an accurate cut when you split the 15mgs, I could only imagine trying to split a 30 into 4 pieces would be really hard. I also don't know how they're having you administer the meds, but I'm assuming that you've been told that the little pink beads are the actual prevacid, the rest is just the strawberry flavoring...

My other suggestion is you might want to try the zantac at night. It is a faster acting med, and many kiddos (my own included) do better with getting their last dose of zantac just before bed. (My youngest would get her prevacid around 8:30pm and then her last zantac around 11:30om, and it helped A LOT with the nighttime waking and screaming, she would still wake to eat, but would be way more calm about it).

I hope you have a great appointment with the GI, I really hope you get a good one! (lol I've heard they're out there, but my girls' GIs haven't been the greatest so far). Good luck with the nutrimigen as well, I hope it makes a big difference!

Oh! with my daughters, when they're having really reflux flares, and their meds really aren't cutting it, I give mylanta supreme, (its the one without the aluminum in the ingredients), but like the other meds, it needs to be given at least 4 hours before his next dose of either prevacid or zantac, and at least 2 hours after either of his other meds. Thats one thing that would help my oldest when she was writhing in pain and nothing else seemed to work. It didn't seem to work as well for my youngest though, but it does help her some now.... It is one of the hardest things in the world to do, having to sit and watch your baby in pain from reflux, and not being able to fix it.

Anyways, I'm looking forward to getting to know you on KHS!

Mary Lynn - posted on 08/21/2009

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Thanks for your response and suggestions. I was not aware that the timing of the prevacid and zantac was crucial. He is getting 1/4 of 30mg pill of prevacid morning and night. The zantac is 1.5ml at lunch time.

He is now on Nutramigen which is hypo-allergenic formula. We are thickening with oatmeal. His doc suggested beachnut oatmeal b/c other bramds have soy in them--just found that out yesterday!

We are scheduled to see the ped gi tomorrow for the first time, so hoping for the best.

The worst part of this whole thing is seeing him in pain and not being able to help.

Thanks again for your support! I will check out the site

User - posted on 08/20/2009

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Hi there! I'm new to this Circle of Moms thing, but not new to infant reflux! I have two daughters, an 18 month and a 6 month old, both with reflux, so I totally know where you're coming from.



What dose of zantac and prevacid is your son taking? zantac is extremely weight sensitive, and it doesn't work on all kiddos, and a usual dose of prevacid for under one is 1/2 of a 15 mg solutab twice a day. Many drs will start kiddos at 1/2 tab per day, but many need more then that. Also, prevacid should be taken at least an hour after eating, and at least 30 before eating. Zantac is the same, except prevacid should be given 2 hours before zantac or 4 hours after, otherwise they can make each other ineffective. (did ya get all that?? confusing, I know...)



Also, what does your son eat? Formula or BF? One common cause of reflux in infants is intolerances. My youngest is MSPI, which is milk and soy protein intolerant, and since she is breast fed, I had to take all soy and dairy proteins out of my diet (and they're in EVERYTHING!!! lol), Many kids are just intolerant to one or the other, but if they're intolerant to one, their chances of having problems with both can increase. If you try to take dairy and soy out of his diet or yours, it can take up to two weeks





If your son is bottle fed, there may be options of trying different formulas, and there are many out there. If you switch formulas, you have to give it some time, like with breast milk it can take up to two weeks to show an improvement.



Now that I have completely overwhelmed you with info (yeah, sorry about that, its hard without knowing all your situation specifics), I am also going to send you a message with a link to a website that will be able to offer more situation specific help for you and your DS.



I hope you are able to find some comfort for your LO soon!



Tonya

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