Support for Infant Feeding Conditions

The following information has been provided by Aptaclub

Support for your baby’s feeding conditions

When feeding your baby in the first few weeks and months of their life, it’s not uncommon to meet challenges along the way. From allergies and reflux to colic and constipation, it’s only natural to have questions about what to expect on your new baby feeding journey.

Whatever your baby's feeding problem, here you’ll find the support and guidance you need to figure out those all-important next steps.

Take 10 minutes to complete our Baby Symptom Checker for practical tips and a handy symptom summary to show your Pharmacist, Health Visitor or GP.


Constipation in babies1 can be difficult to deal with. After all, it’s never good to see your baby uncomfortable or in pain. But try not to worry. Child and newborn baby constipation is relatively common, especially with any changes to diet.

How to help constipated babies?

How to help a constipated baby is a question many parents find themselves asking. If you’re one of them, you’re most definitely not alone. But what are the best forms of baby constipation relief?

Here are a couple of practical tips on how to relieve constipation in babies:

• Gently move your baby’s legs as if they’re riding a bicycle

• You could also try a baby tummy massage for constipation. This involves gently and carefully massaging your baby’s tummy to help stimulate their bowels.

Physical exercise also helps to get your child’s digestive system moving, so encouraging active play, followed by a nice warm bath, is another way to ease the symptoms of baby constipation.

These steps can help get things on the move, but if you don’t see any improvement, have a chat with your GP or health visitor.

Reflux in babies

If your baby has been diagnosed with reflux2, there are a few practical things you can do to make them more comfortable.

Here are a few remedies and practical tips on how to soothe baby reflux:
• Avoid overfeeding – try giving your baby smaller amounts more often. This will help to avoid their tummy becoming too full

• Burp your baby before, during and after feeding

• Keep your baby upright during, and for about 30 minutes after feeding - let gravity do its thing!

• If you are breastfeeding, seek advice about your baby's breastfeeding position

• Make sure that your baby sleeps flat on their back, rather than on their side or front

If your baby is bottle-fed, check that the hole in the teat is not too large. This can cause babies to gulp their feed too quickly. If your baby is having formula, you can also seek advice from your healthcare professional, who may discuss suitable specialist formulas for the dietary management of reflux.

If you find that your baby is more unsettled at night time, you might want to try keeping your baby upright for as long as possible after their bedtime feed.


The NHS defines colic3 as 'when a baby cries a lot but there is no obvious cause'. If you find that your baby is crying for more than three hours a day, for longer than a week, but is otherwise healthy, you may be dealing with a colicky baby.

Here are a few tried-and-tested methods that have been known to provide baby colic relief:

• Use gentle rocking motions to try and settle your baby - perhaps try rocking them over your shoulder

• Experiment with holding them in different positions, and hold your baby upright during feeds, and for as long as possible afterwards

• Use a ‘fast-flow’ teat if you’re bottle feeding – small holes in the teat can lead to swallowing too much air while feeding

• Always wind your baby after a feed

• Try calming them with white noise (e.g. hairdryer, radio, or background TV)

• Give them a warm bath

• Put your baby in the pram and take them for a stroll

• Give them a gentle stomach or back rub

• Baby massages for colic may also be an option to help soothe your colicky baby. It's always best to get help from your health visitor

• Giving your baby plenty of cuddles

When it comes to comforting your baby, there’s no one-size-fits-all, and it’s all about trying different things to see what works. 

Put simply, reflux is when babies bring their milk back up during, or after, a feed. It’s also known as posseting, but it’s different to vomiting. There’s no straining involved and your baby is unlikely to be phased2.

It's all down to physiology. The muscle surrounding your baby’s oesophagus (food pipe) isn’t fully developed at birth. This means that the milk and food your baby eats can travel right back up again. That’s why it’s not uncommon to see reflux in babies2.

The main thing to remember about reflux is that although it can be distressing for parents, it’s very common and completely normal. You may worry that your baby isn’t getting enough nutrients, but this is very rarely the case. As long as your baby’s not showing signs of discomfort or losing weight, there’s usually no cause for concern2.

While reflux is normal and should pass with time, it’s always a good idea to talk to your health visitor, pharmacist or GP if you’re concerned about your baby’s symptoms. Always speak to a healthcare professional if your baby is vomiting regularly, bringing up large amounts of milk or has discomfort while feeding, so other causes can be ruled out2.

Dealing with a colicky baby can be exhausting and worrying. But your baby having colic doesn’t mean they’re unwell or that you’re doing something wrong. One of the most important things to know is that there are no long-term effects. So whilst colic can be very stressful to manage, you can rest assured that it’s nothing to worry about3.

Colic is a common problem that affects up to one in five babies and it affects babies whether they’re breastfed or bottle-fed, or a combination of both3.

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