Tuesday, 6 September 2016

Let's talk reflux

I haven't blogged about LL's reflux in a while and I think that might have been because at times I don't even know where to start with it. Sometimes I feel that we are managing it and other days I am at a loss and wonder if we're doing the right thing at all.  You can read about the initial reflux symptoms here and subsequent treatment here.  In my last post on reflux I wrote how we were trialling ranitidine twice a day, and so, here we are. LL is now 10 months.  

I was a bit sceptical of the ranitidine working to begin with to be honest, but it made such a difference.  From waking up at least five times a night, within 2-3 days, LL was only waking twice which was so amazing I can't tell you.  To actually sleep for more than 2 hours was the most wonderful thing.  LL also seemed happier in herself and began making more noises and babbling which she hadn't done before.  I really felt like we were turning a corner. 

And then came food.  At this point, we had tried weaning, but had stopped as it seemed to make LL's reflux even worse.  We hoped that on the ranitidine and with things settling down, weaning could eventually begin, albeit it a little late.  And this is where the cycle started.  

We would try LL on some foods, and then I would be up all night with her in pain.  No matter what food we tried, nothing seemed to make a difference.  From banana to peach to bread to vegetables, no matter what food group it was, LL just seemed to be in pain following it. And so the cycle began of not offering LL any food and exclusively breastfeeding her so she would become more settled, then reintroducing solids and her being unsettled again.  

After two months of this cycle, the GP referred us to a paediatrician whom we saw today. I felt there was some reluctance from the GP to refer, which has confused me somewhat.  I don't know if he felt LL's symptoms were manageable (in which case I blame myself for not being clearer on her discomfort) or he wanted to try and keep her treatment within the GP practice. Either way, after our consultation today we have a new plan.  We have a doubled dosage of the ranitidine with a review in two weeks.  

Along with LL's reflux I feel alot of guilt that this hasn't been sorted out earlier.  I feel as a mum and also as a health professional, I should have trusted myself from the start and maybe pushed for a paediatrician review.  I guess at the time I just really wanted and hoped that we could sort it out without needing to be seen at the hospital or needing stronger medication.  

Discussing LL's symptoms at length with the paediatrician, we really don't think it is dietary related as there is no food group that the symptoms are specific too, and it was reassuring to hear that she felt it was reflux too.  Even though all the symptoms point to that, it's nice to have an expert say it too.  

We will see.  I feel reassured that we are now under the care of the hospital and I just hope this means the end is in sight for reflux.  I know there are families going through much much worse and children much much sicker than LL, but I just want everything to be right for her and for her to be pain free.  This reflux journey has been long and hard. Fingers crossed we get there soon. 



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