Infant Feeding

Your breast milk is the best food available for your baby. It was designed especially for them and has a whole range of benefits for both you and your baby. There are even more benefits involved in breastfeeding if your baby has gastric reflux. Breast milk is cheap, easily replaced if vomited, smells less when regurgitated and most importantly is more easily digested than formula, which means that the stomach remains full for a shorter period of time thereby decreasing reflux episodes. Studies have shown that breastfeeding may reduce the risk of developing allergies but it can depend on the diet of the mother as well. I breastfed my first two children (not refluxers) until they were 14 months old and my third child who has reflux until she was approximately 11 months. I strongly advocate breastfeeding until at least one year of age, but also acknowledge that this isn’t always the best for both mother and child (usually the mother). A happy baby requires a happy mother!

There are a variety of circumstances that may lead to formula feeding, and my reason is only one of these. My third child had a cow’s milk intolerance, which meant I had to have a cow’s milk free diet. Whenever I consumed cow’s milk in any form she suffered for at least a week. Eventually I found the restrictions on my diet too much and changed to formula very slowly as it took some time to find one she could also tolerate. I do wish in hindsight that I had persevered for another few months, which would have been of benefit to both of us. Please discuss with your child’s doctor/paediatrician or Plunket nurse about which formula would be the best for your baby. Formulas are either whey based or casein based. Whey based formulas tend to be slightly more expensive but better tolerated as they are more like breast milk.

La Leche League , a lactation consultant or your local Plunket family centre may be of help also if you wish to continue breastfeeding and are having problems of any kind.

Special Formulas

Some formulas are available on prescription if your paediatrician applies for a special authority number. These include hypoallergenic formulas such as Neocate, Elecare or Pepti Junior. The hypoallergenic formulas are very expensive to purchase.  Neocate and Elecare are not readily available without a special authority number and prescription. Neocate is ‘elemental’, which means that all the nutrients are in their simplest form (i.e.. amino acids) and are easy to digest. Pepti Junior is a hydrolysed protein formula with proteins broken down to peptides, which may still cause an allergic reaction in some infants. For prices of these formulas on prescription see the PHARMAC Interactive Schedule or contact a dietician at Nutricia (Phone 0800 258 268) for further information, as they may be able to advise you how you can obtain these cheaper or offer some practical help with your infant’s feeding. Your own dietician or doctor should be able to help also.

For the infant that has not shown any sign of a cow’s milk allergy but is at risk of developing allergies due to family history there is a formula by Karicare called SensiKare HA. The proteins are partially hydrolysed i.e. not as broken down as Pepti Junior. It is available from supermarkets and internet mail order at a reasonable cost (less than Goat’s and Soya Formula).

Goat’s milk and Soya Formula are not recommended by some paediatricians and allergy experts due to the risk of an allergy also developing to these. Others experience has indicated that these may be suitable so this is something you need to discuss with your health professional if you are considering either of them. Soy based formulas are not recommended when soy is the only source of nutrition. Therefore, a child who is bottle fed only (with no solids) would be best not to be on a soy formula.

There are also a number of already thickened formulas available, but I have been told that most of these do not remain thickened once they are in the stomach and that Karicare AR is the only one available in New Zealand that does. There is also information on thickening feeds available from GRSNNZ, including thickeners suitable for both breastfeeding and formula feeding. A document on AR formula is also available. Thickening feeds should not be attempted until any pain from gastric reflux has been controlled with the appropriate medication.

There are lactose free formulas for those babies with a lactose intolerance. One of these is Karicare De-Lact, which is available on prescription. Soy formulas and Neocate are also lactose free. Pepti junior is “clinically lactose free”. More information is available on Lactose intolerance vs. Milk protein allergy.

NB: This page was designed for New Zealanders. If you are from another country and require assistance with infant feeding, please contact the appropriate health professionals to obtain help.

This was prepared on December 2002, updated June 2005 and to the best of my knowledge is accurate.

REFERENCES:
Breastfeeding (at Everybody)
Composition of formulas from the Karicare site (no longer available on the website) and Karicare infant formula
Goat formula
Karicare Soy formula, Infasoy formula (Health answers site – website no longer available), Isomil (Ross Paediatric Products)
Neocate
Pepti Junior (Health Answers site – website no longer available)
Karicare AR
Dr Rodney Ford, Paediatrician
Karicare SensiKare HA Infant Formula
Cows Milk Allergy – An Update on Adverse Reactions – http://www.allergyclinic.co.nz/guides/43.html

Written by Roslyn Ballantyne (RN), National Coordinator for © Crying Over Spilt Milk Gastric Reflux Support Network New Zealand for Parents of Infants and Children Charitable Trust (GRSNNZ) 2005.

This page may be printed for the personal use of families, as long as the copyright and source (i.e. Crying Over Spilt Milk‘s URL) is also printed. It may not be copied to other websites or publications without permission.

  • Is there are support sight for adults, please

  • Just bumping this to the top of the page:

    Please do not advertise on our page. This is for sharing our experiences about Infant Reflux/GOR/GORD. If you would like us to link to your organisation or your page, please message the page. The GRSNNZ Committee will make the decision once you have provided us with information on the Governance of the Organisation, Source of your Information or your relevant NZ Health or Nutrition Qualification etc. Grumble over...

  • Here is a new post to our page:

    Hello to All the Mum's.. Soo glad i found this page.. Have a 16 month old lil baby boy who has very bad reflux.. He throws up 90% of what he eats.. Im at my wits end.. Wana just burst into tears when he throws up now.. He hates any thing on his tongue.. Eg.. If he drinks milk or eats something and while playing has to get a lil piece of hair or fluff in his mouth.. He gets nauseous and throws up EVERYTHING!! Has anyone experienced this? Paed had put him on Nexiam 2 weeks ago but no improvement since.. Pls help me💔

  • Hello to All the Mum's.. Soo glad i found this page.. Have a 16 month old lil baby boy who has very bad reflux.. He throws up 90% of what he eats.. Im at my wits end.. Wana just burst into tears when he throws up now.. He hates any thing on his tongue.. Eg.. If he drinks milk or eats something and while playing has to get a lil piece of hair or fluff in his mouth.. He gets nauseous and throws up EVERYTHING!! Has anyone experienced this? Paed had put him on Nexiam 2 weeks ago but no improvement since.. Pls help me💔

  • http://www.pinkymckay.com/how-can-i-get-my-baby-to-sleep-more-than-45-minutes/

      “I’m after some advice on how to get my baby to sleep longer than 45 minutes during the day. it seems to be a common topic with many mummies and i wondered whether you had already blogged this and if so if you could point me in the right direction to find it. Alternatively if you havent, do you th…

  • http://www.treasures.co.nz/Explore-your-stage/Article/?contentId=1784920 These won't work if your child is unwell or in pain, but are otherwise good tips.

    Sleeping through the night At this age and stage research by Dr Marc Weissbluth indicates that hunger is no longer why your baby is waking at night if they are a healthy weight and continuing to gain weight we can teach them to sleep from 7pm-7am. Your baby needs to be eating a healthy diet of carbo…

  • Hi everyone, It has been pointed out that new posts to the page by non-admin don't show up in your newsfeed. I don't want to repost them, but if you want to pop on over and share your experiences there are a few new posts from October.

  • Please do not advertise on our page. This is for sharing our experiences about Infant Reflux/GOR/GORD. If you would like us to link to your organisation or your page, please message the page. The GRSNNZ Committee will make the decision once you have provided us with information on the Governance of the Organisation, Source of your Information or your relevant NZ Health or Nutrition Qualification etc. Grumble over...

  • https://www.healthed.govt.nz/system/files/resource-files/HE2309.pdf Cool pictures, lovely mothers. Not saying that women who choose to bottle feed aren't wonderful mothers too, but this is neat promotion.

  • Hi there. Posting from the UK. Wanted to share our story to gain some more insight. We've had a really tough time. My first baby is 8 + weeks now and we've had no end of issues. She was tongue tied..snipped...but latch still a problem. She is mostly breastfed but using nipple shields. Occasional top up when i can't tolerate feeding her. She feeds or wants to feed constantly. Thought it was hunger but no different after a bottle of formula. Anyway...a friend mentioned she could have silent reflux...symptoms are constant feeding hand sucking...back arching fussing through feeds like she wants it but doesn't too. Struggles to sleep although sooo tired. Falls asleep on boob but wakes immediately after. Hiccups a lot. Sneezes a lot. Crys after feeds...weight has been slow to gain tho. Prescribed infant gaviscon...any experiences of this and is it likely to make her constipated if mostly breastfed?! Worried it feels like trial and error at her expense. She's so unsettled and we are really struggling....opinions welcome :)

  • The Cards are now available in an app for Android and Apple devices: http://allright.org.nz/our-projects/tiny-adventures/

    Our Pack of Tiny Adventures was developed to help parents to enjoy quick, fun and affordable activities with their children. It was developed in partnership with SKIP (Strategies with Kids Information for Parents) gives parents easy ways to connect with their kids - even if they only have a few min…

  • My 12 week old baby has reflux, currently on 5mg of losec in the morning novelac reflux formula, she also suffers with painful wind, lately she has been choking on her vomit, not sure if I should change to novo lac colic formula instead, we have tried soy and goats to which she spewed up a lot more than the ar formula, please help with suggestions , it is hugely stressful for our family

  • Cn u get formula made for babies with reflux on script?

  • I'm getting the September Newsletter ready. Is there anything anyone wants to contribute? Please let me know: https://www.facebook.com/roslyn.ballantyne.rn

  • Hi there are there any formulas that you can get on prescription or financial assistance? Pretty sure my 8 week old isn't coping with his formula that he's on. He has reflux and on ranitidine but now he has green mucousy poo so im thinking he might need some different formula? But I see specialist formulas are expensive!!

  • Hi, my 5 month old has started solids and we have been ok'd to feed these before milk as otherwise he spills most of it. He takes losec granules, which was have been giving with pear 30mins before a milk feed. Can we now just give these with his solids with milk following half an hour+ later? Or not due to the higher volume of food in his stomach so it wouldn't be digested by the time he has his milk. Thanks