Spitting up and Vomitting

Spitting up and Vomitting – most babies have incidences of spitting up and vomiting after feeds, some more often than others. Parents are usually concerned about why their baby spits up so much. Understanding it can help ease some bit of anxiety.


Why do Babies spit up ?

 There are many reasons for spitting up in young babies.

  • Babies take in air along with milk which gets trapped with the milk. When you burp the baby, air comes up and brings a small amount of milk with it. Bottle-fed babies usually suck in more air than breast-fed babies and it is important to burp them often.
  • The food-pipe or esophagus is attached to stomach with a valve which gets closed and does not allow contents to go back to food-pipe. Baby’s digestive system is immature and the valve is still developing which causes milk to go back to esophagus and into mouth and out. Even little amount of activity or jostling after feeding can cause this.
  • Babies sometimes overfeed or parents overfeed especially when trying to make the baby finish that bottle. Babies tummies are small and they do stretch like mature tummies in older people to accommodate extra milk. This leads to vomiting or spit-ups.

Difference between Spitting up and Vomiting ?

Spit-ups are common in babies and most babies bring out a little amount of milk gently after feeds and are fine after that. Vomiting is more forceful and term is used when stomach contents are ejected out with enough force to propel atleast a few centimeters. This is also known as projectile vomiting.

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