You just fed your little one, and you see them spitting up milk. Does this warrant a trip to the hospital? In most cases, the baby spits milk due to overfeeding. Read this article to know about the causes and precautions.
What Are the Reasons for a 9-month-old Baby To Vomit Severely?
Severe vomiting in a 9-month-old baby is mainly determined by the baby’s physical development characteristics. If the baby is vomiting severely or has poor spirits after vomiting, he may be suffering from an illness. Some other reasons for your child spitting up milk are as follows:
1. A child’s stomach is in a horizontal position, and the stomach fundus is straight. Due to this, it is easy for the contents of the stomach to overflow. After standing and walking, the diaphragm drops, and the action of gravity gradually turns it into a vertical position. In addition, the baby’s stomach volume is small, the muscles and nerves of the stomach wall are immature, and the muscle tone is low, all of which are easy to cause milk overflow.
2. The baby’s stomach does not hang down like in older children and adults; it is in a horizontal position. This reduces the capacity of the stomach and stores less food. The milk drunk from the mouth first passes through a tube called the esophagus and then enters the stomach. The baby’s stomach has two “gates,” the cardia and the pylorus. The cardia is connected with the esophagus; it is the entrance of the stomach. The other gate connected with the intestine is called the pylorus, which is the stomach’s exit. The tension of the esophageal muscles of infants and young children is low, which is easy to cause expansion. At the same time, the peristalsis is slow, so food is easy to accumulate.
3. Improper feeding methods, excessive feeding of infants, or emptying of the bottle, etc., will cause the baby to swallow a lot of air and cause milk overflow.
4. As a result of coughing during a cold or sickness, the abdominal pressure increases, often accompanied by vomiting symptoms.
5. Diarrhea, hepatitis, otitis media, pneumonia, sepsis, meningitis are some illnesses that can cause infant vomiting.
What to Do If a 9-Month-Old Baby Vomits Milk?
Vomiting is a natural occurrence in babies. There are certain steps you can take when your little one is vomiting milk:
1. Pay attention to the way of feeding. Do not overfeed them. After the baby is full, pick him up gently, with the head slightly higher, and pat the baby’s back for 5-10 minutes.
2. Feed him in moderation, and do not overdo it.
3. Give small and frequent meals to reduce the pressure on the stomach.
4. During and after each feed, let the baby lie on the adult’s shoulder vertically and pat the baby’s back gently to give them a burp. This action can expel the air swallowed into the stomach to reduce the pressure.
5. Do not be too rushed or too fast during feeding. Pause for a while so that your baby can breathe more smoothly.
6. The opening of the bottle should be moderate. If the opening is too small, the baby needs to suck vigorously. Air is easy to be sucked from the corner of the mouth and then into the stomach. If the opening is too large, milk flows into the mouth quickly and can cause suffocation due to obstruction of the trachea.
7. After feeding, do not let the baby lay down immediately. First, let him sit upright and pat his back lightly. When you lay him down, turn him to one side, preferably lying on the right side, so that the food in the stomach is not regurgitated.
8. After feeding, do not let the baby get agitated. Do not engage in vigorous activity or shake the baby’s body too much.
9. After vomiting, pay more attention to the baby‘s condition. Raise his head when he is lying down, or simply hold him upright. Give small amounts of water to prevent dehydration.
What are the Nursing Methods for a 9-month Baby Spitting Up Milk?
1. Keep the upper body elevated: Once the vomit enters the trachea, it will cause suffocation. When letting the child lay down, it is best to put the bath towel under the child’s body and keep the upper body elevated. If the child spits up while lying down, we can turn his face to one side. Wrap a handkerchief around your fingers and reach into his mouth, or even their throat, to quickly clean out vomited milk and food to clear the respiratory tract. Then use a small cotton swab to clean the nostrils. When the baby is holding his breath without breathing, or his face turns dark, it means that the vomiting matter may have entered the trachea. Put him prone on an adult’s lap or bed and pat his back four or five times to make him cough.
2. After vomiting up, please pay more attention to the child’s condition: raise his head when he is lying down, or hold the child upright. After throwing up, his complexion may be bad; if he recovers later, then there is no problem.
3. Replenishing water should be done 30 minutes after vomiting: After the child vomits, do not give water immediately as it may cause him to vomit again. Therefore, it is best to give water about 30 minutes after vomiting. Use a spoon or a bottle to give water in small amounts.
4. After throwing up, the number of feedings should be reduced to half of the usual: when the baby recovers and wants to feed again, we can feed him more milk. However, the amount of each feeding should be reduced to about half of the usual. The number of feedings can be increased.
How to Prevent a 9-month Baby From Spitting Up Milk?
1. Choose the right size of the nipple: If the bottle’s nipple hole is too small, the child will have to suck hard. This will cause air and milk to be sucked in together, and it may cause the child to spit up. But if the hole is too large, it will easily choke the child when sucking. Therefore, when choosing a bottle nipple, we must consider whether the size of the hole is suitable for our children.
2. Do not tease the baby who has just fed milk: After feeding, do not make the child laugh or engage in some activity. It is best to let him fall asleep quietly. The sleeping position should be in the proper decubitus position to avoid pressure on the stomach and prevent him from spitting up. Do not put too much pressure on the child’s body, and do not dress and wrap him too tightly.
3. Give them regular burps: The best way to prevent spitting up is to help him burp. The contraction function of the cardia matures with age, so the frequency of spitting up will be significantly reduced. Before that, we need to help the child to burp after each feeding.
4. Check the nasal cavity before feeding: check whether the baby’s nasal cavity is blocked before feeding. It is best to clean the nasal cavity before feeding to avoid the mouth and nose being blocked. Otherwise, he will be uncomfortable while feeding, especially if he has been crying.
What are the Precautions for a 9-month Baby Spitting Up Milk?
Distinguish whether the baby is throwing up or spitting milk.
Parents must first figure out whether the baby is throwing up or spitting milk. The meanings of the two are different, and the reasons and treatment methods are different. When a baby vomits, it is in greater amount, and it can occur shortly after feeding or half an hour later. Before vomiting, the child may have a painful and uncomfortable expression. Spitting up milk is in smaller quantities. It mainly occurs when the baby has just been fed. You may see some milk dribbling down his chin.
The difference between physiological and pathological vomiting
- Physiological vomiting of milk: It is due to the characteristics of the baby’s successful development. The baby’s stomach does not hang down like in older children and adults, but it is in a horizontal position. This can reduce the capacity of the stomach, causing it to store less food. The excess material is sent back through cardia. Other than overfeeding, certain other factors, such as lying down immediately after feeding, can cause vomiting.
- Pathological vomiting of milk: If the baby vomits several times in a row and vomits every time he feeds, check the baby’s condition. Observe whether he has a fever, how the stool is, whether there is any change in spirit, etc. These symptoms indicate that there may be problems with the gastrointestinal tract, or other body systems may have a disease. Take him to the hospital for examination.
- Parents should keep an eye out for a shift in mood and behavior post vomiting. If he stops vomiting but is still sluggish, unable to sleep, upset, has a fever, or has a bloated stomach, he may be sick. Immediately refer to a doctor for medical help.
Vomiting is the body’s natural way of removing unwanted material and toxins. It is natural for a baby to vomit. Some symptoms such as drowsiness, lack of response, blood in stool, or vomit, may require you to seek medical help.