Desperation is a feeling that is often experienced by parents of babies with acid reflux. Often a parent feels conflicted about treatment of the child with medication because newborns are so little. However if a child is full of acid and gas there may be no other way to treat it but with chemicals that are known to work when it comes to dissolving gas breaking up gas.
If the colic is due to acid reflux then there are medications that can help your child recover.
The goals of treatment of acid reflux are to
Â· Relieve symptoms
Â· Promote normal weight gain
Â· Heal inflammation
Â· Prevent complications
The medical approach is very straightforward. It involves addressing the issue of stomach acid, which creates the pain of the reflux and stomach emptying which are the key initiators of reflux. If you can get these two problems in line you will have a happier baby.
Gas Drops are the first line of over the counter treatment for gas. Before prescribing you any medicine your doctor may suggest that you try gas drops. Gas drops are over the counter preparations that help break up gas. Most formulations contain simethicone.
Simethicone is a compound that does a great job of breaking up big gas bubbles in the intestine and breaking them down into smaller ones.
However if the baby is taking in a lot of air due to constantly screaming then these gas drops may simply not be enough to handle the problem. Unfortunately the baby's natural inclination is to gulp more air.
If stomach acid is the trigger that is making your baby scream then your doctor will prescribe an acid suppressant.
There are two classes of mediation that are used to suppress acid in babies. These include histamine receptor antagonists and proton pump inhibiters.
The histamine receptor antagonists are known to most of us as Zantac, Axid and Pepcid. They have been in use since 1981. For the baby with mild symptoms of reflux esopoghagitis these medications are a reasonable treatment option. However the drawback of using them is that they are a symptomatic treatment that loses its effectiveness with time.
Proton pump inhibiters actually stop the stomach from producing acid. This can help give the esophagus time to heal. The drug that is mainly used to treat children with reflux is called Prilosec. Children over the age of 11 can also take a similar drug called Nexium.
Prokinetic mediations are designed to improve your child's intestinal motility. They do this by —
Â· Helping the esophagus squeeze close and stay closed
Â· Increase the LES pressure so the child does not regurgitate as often
Â· Accelerate the emptying of the stomach contents
The two most popular of the prokinetic medications that are prescribed are called Reglan and Bethanechol. Both medications are given to a child four times a day.
Reglan has quite a few side effects including sleeplessness, jittery behavior, tongue thrusting, arching and head turning. This means the side effects of giving your kid this drug is just as bad as the colic itself.