To Rice Cereal or Not to Rice Cereal

by Isabella on June 12, 2012

So about 2 weeks ago, I noticed that my little 4 month old munchkin started burping his milk up.  When he did it the first time, I wasn’t too concerned, as I figured it was just spit up.  Then he continued burp a bunch of milk up with every feeding….which is upsetting, as he is very hard to feed in general.  He eats 2 oz and then gets distracted and refuses to open his mouth…which is weird…since he used to eat 6 oz when he was 2 months old.  Despite that, I still figured it’s a normal part of being a baby.

But when I woke up one morning to my son sounding like a bird about to take flight for the first time…is when I started worrying.  He’s never squeeked before, so the noises he was making were unusual.  As soon as I’d pick him up and hold him vertically, he’d stop.  It took a few hours before I connected 2 and 2..and realized that my son has what seems like Laryngitis.  I’ve only seen it in kids and adults that actually speak, but his voice sounded like what a hoarse patient would sound like.  My poor baby’s vocal cords were being burned by acid…and instead of crying and complaining…like normal folk…he would turn into a bird in the morning :)

What is a mother to do…??  I know all the adult treatments for reflux…but babies are so unique.  He can’t really sit yet….he supposed to sleep flat on his back – so elevating his mattress seems not in SIDS protocol…and he can’t eat solids…and I was not too keen on starting rice cereal anyway….which makes treating him without medication pretty impossible.  Nevertheless…after much contemplation, implemented my own treatment plan.

The Izzy Baby Reflux treatment plan – step 1 :

  • Only feed him in a sitting position – he basically leans on me and eats
  • Burp him every oz in a sitting position – it seems putting him over my shoulder puts pressure on his tummy
  • hold him upright for at least 20 minutes after his meal his complete

That seemed to help and within a few days, the bird my son swallowed earlier that week….flew away :)  But he would still burp up  some milk occasionally….so my research on rice cereal began.

There are so many varying opinions on whether introducing Rice Cereal early causes allergies, or delays allergies.  I tried to find an actual scientific journal to read and analyze (as that is what I do)…and there was nothing to be found…so I did the next best thing…I mommied it :)  I figured that in 1982, when I was born…in the middle of nowhere Russia…my mom probably didn’t know a thing about allergies and probably didn’t care.  I was born at 28 weeks…and probably did eat solids before 6 months to fatten me up…and I turned out just fine :)  (well, aside from my allergy to wool and cashmere and acrylic) ;)

I decided to take the risk and give Eitan a slightly thickened up formula….one bottle a day…in the morning…so I could observe any allergic reaction he may have.  I mixed a teaspoon of rice cereal per 1 oz of baby formula and split the bottle nipple a bit.

I am happy to report that baby has tolerated my experiment well, no diarrhea, constipation, or vomiting.  No rashes either.  And surprisingly…with only one bottle a day…his reflux is gone.  I’ve upped it to 6 teaspoons per 5 oz of milk, and I definitely don’t recommend making it any thicker than that…as thicker formula straight from the bottle increases the risk of chocking.

Now both Eitan and I are happy…and he’s not squeeking like a bird anymore…laryngitis cured…reflux…cured…now if only I could get him to sleep through the night!  :)

  • Lana G.

    Definately – rice! As to sleeping longer at night – more filling supper (milk+rice). Eitan will appreciate, and so you will too:)

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