Did you know that half of all babies regularly spit up in their first three months of life? Baby spit-up is a perfectly natural occurrence and is medically referred to as infant reflux.
If your baby is spitting up, it’s likely because their lower esophageal sphincter needs time to develop. This means that even with the smallest burp, your baby’s last meal can easily come back up and out their esophagus. Occasionally it makes it back to the mouth. When this happens, it is much more difficult to swallow it again.
Whether you’re breastfeeding or bottle-feeding your baby, you can expect baby spit-up. Especially if your baby feeds to the point that their stomach is completely full, or if they ingest too much air while they’re feeding.
If your newborn is spitting up a little bit after being fed, it’s probably nothing to worry about. If your baby is spitting up a lot, you might be wondering “how much spit-up is normal?”
As a new mom, it’s common to have many questions about what’s considered “normal” for your newborn. Remember that the most important thing about spitting up is not how often and how much a baby spits up, but whether a baby is a "happy spitter," i.e., whether they feed well, gain weight normally, and are not unusually irritable.
If your baby has other symptoms like weight loss or diarrhea, it could be a sign of a more serious gastrointestinal problem like gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), and you should speak with your baby’s doctor. GERD occurs when acidic content of the stomach damages the esophagus. Apart from spitting up, symptoms of GERD include vomiting, coughing, irritability, poor feeding, poor growth, blood in the stools, and breathing problems.