Spilt Milk

…support for parents coping with infants who spill and/or are irritable…

Where do you fit if you have an infant who just spills a lot?

What about if they are just irritable?

What happens if all your health professionals say that there is nothing wrong with your baby, that they are perfectly healthy and they will just grow out of the spilling, and/or the crying is just a phase?

What happens if despite being reassured that this is all normal, you can’t cope with the washing, mess, crying, lack of sleep…?

What happens if your baby does appear to be perfectly healthy – is it all in your head?

What happens if your baby isn’t gaining weight or you and others do have REAL concerns?

Can you still join the Gastric Reflux Support Network NZ?  YES!

Our only request is: You need to take your baby to a doctor for a proper diagnosis if you think they may have Gastric Reflux and it is a problem.  You may have already done this.

Join GRSNNZ by completing a membership form here: https://www.cryingoverspiltmilk.co.nz/about/grsnnzmembershipandconfidentialityagreementform/

Initially this page “Spilt Milk” was set up to solely provide information and support for parents or caregivers who are stressed by coping with their infant who spills and/or is irritable, and we ran a successful course in Canterbury.  However, this is not sustainable and we know that many of the issues are the same whatever the cause, so please join the Gastric Reflux Support Network regardless of diagnosis.

We hope that by participating with others with similar challenges and experiences, that your ability to manage the everyday demands would be enhanced.  Our aim is that with support from others that understand, you would be more likely to maintain your own emotional health and well-being, and increase your participation within the community.

The reality of parenting a baby that spills copious amounts, and/or cries a lot and sleeps little is far from what most parents were expecting when they were waiting to hold their new-born, and we understand this!  However, spilling in infants is normal and many infants will go through a period of increased crying.

Please explore this website, complete a membership form and join in discussions either on our Facebook Pages or Private Facebook Groups.




Spilling / Posseting / Regurgitation

These are all common in an infant due to an immature sphincter at the top of the stomach / bottom of the oesophagus (lower oesophageal sphincter).[1]  The baby may be a bit unsettled and may have periods of crying.  Crying in a normal infant will usually peak in the second month and settle around three to four months.[2]  They may have short bouts of painful crying associated with a spill, but this crying is not prolonged.  Spilling may also disturb sleep.  “The constant mess, cleaning, laundry etc. can lead to tiredness and isolation and others don’t necessarily understand why parents aren’t coping with something that is so normal that it affects more than 50% of babies.”  (Ballantyne, 2014)  Spilling does not need to be treated with conventional medication.

Spilling may also be referred to as Gastric Reflux / Gastro-Oesophageal Reflux / GOR, but it is still quite normal!

You need to take your baby to a doctor for a proper diagnosis if you think they may have Gastric Reflux and it is a problem (feeding difficulties, not growing well or severe pain etc.).

Works Cited

Ballantyne, R. (2014, May). …there needs to be more awareness of infant Gastric Reflux. Retrieved October 2014, from Crying Over Spilt Milk: https://www.cryingoverspiltmilk.co.nz/there-needs-to-be-more-awareness-of-infant-Gastric-Reflux/




Written and compiled by Roslyn Ballantyne, RN, National Coordinator 2013 – 2020 for © Crying Over Spilt Milk Gastric Reflux Support Network New Zealand for Parents of Infants and Children Charitable Trust October 2019.

Page may be printed or reproduced for personal use of families, as long as copyright and Crying Over Spilt Milk’s URL are included. It may not be copied to other websites or publications without permission and acknowledgement.


Last Updated on August 21, 2020 by Crying Over Spilt Milk