Live reflux webchat with Alison Scott-Wright, Monday 5th December, 12-1pm

If you've got a question on baby reflux, from comfortably feeding your baby to dealing with sleepless nights, Alison Scott-Wright will be here to answer your questions in a live webchat.

Alison Scott-Wright, also known as the -Magic Sleep Fairy', is the author of bestselling book -The Sensational Baby Sleep Plan' and is a leading specialist in managing reflux. She is sponsored as an Allied Health Professional to ESPGHAN, and her work is endorsed by some of the UK's leading Paediatric Gastroenterologists. Alison can offer expert advice on recognising, dealing with and managing the symptoms of reflux, an often-undiagnosed condition that affects a baby's digestive system, causing pain and discomfort.

Join us here, between 12-1pm on Monday 5th December, where Alison will be answering your reflux questions.

Don't worry if you can't make the chat then, post your question now and Alison will endeavour to answer as many questions on the day as possible.


  • Hi. The past few weeks my 11 week old has started bringing milk back up on a regular basis. When we first got him home he struggled with wind, and for various reasons has been diagnosed as cmpi, so i have been on a dairy free diet since he was 3 weeks old as he is breastfed. He has only started being sick in the last 3 ish weeks. It normally happens about half an hour or more after a feed, without warning he will burp and sick up, sometimes a few times. He has also started suffering badly with wind again. He had got good at burping but now he just goes really stiff and screams after his evening feed. The only thing that soothes him is sucking on something until he falls asleep. I don't know if this is reflux or not??
  • My baby is 10 weeks old, 4 weeks corrected. Over the past 3 weeks has been fussy at feeds, crying all the time and bringing up clear liquid and sometimes milk. Upright is def the best position ir her. The doctor has prescribed infant gaviscon which has reduced the clear liquid/milk she brings up but she is still crying and fussing. Is it safe and worth it to go onto zantac and can i request the do tests first to confirm acid reflux? She hates being flat and her sleep pattern has she sleeps for half an hour before waking up crying unless she is upright but this means we get no sleep!
  • Hi Alison,

    My son is now 2 years old and suffered with severe reflux from only a few days old - he was taken off the breast after only 6 days from birth of feeding him myself and put onto Nutramigen formula with added gaviscon sachets. He remained on the speical milk until he stopped having bottles (around 14 months) - he now has rice milk due to intolerance to dairy. One of the side effects of his reflux was hiccups whenever he laughed and he still suffers from that side effect now - the poor little lad gets quite strong hiccups when he laughs. Have you any suggestions as to why he'll still be getting the hiccups and if we can help him in any way.

    Thank You,
  • Hi Alison

    My little girl is 24 weeks she was diagnosed with silent reflux when she was 6 weeks she has ranitnadine and infant gaviscon however she is showing signs of little improvement . I was wanting some advice on the best meds for her to take and how to get her in a good sleeping routine as she generally Spends most of the night sleep on me
  • Hi Alison,

    I hope it is alright to ask a question regarding colic not reflux but my 5 week daughter cries for large chunks of time but particularly bad between 5 and 9ish. For the last week the time is getting earlier and earlier (even starting in the morning), i am really exhausted from this (which is made worse as i also have a 21 month old son). Now she has got used to being held and when she finally falls asleep during the day wakes up as soon as she is put down. I have tried leaving her for a while to see if she will settle but i have run out of ideas especially as this is not a problem at night (not yet anyway. Can you advise me on how to get her out of being used to being held to fall asleep and any tips to aid the colic.
  • Hi everyone

    Thanks for all your questions so far and I will do my best to give advice & solutions to them.

    However, it can be tricky to ascertain the real, root cause of the problem with the limited information, so I would also suggest you might like to access a copy of my book The Sensational Baby Sleep Plan in which you will find more in depth information regarding sleep issues, reflux & dietary related intolerances and feeding problems.

    There is also information on my website

    Looking forward to hearing from you and cheating soon

    Alison x
  • My daughter is almost 8 weeks old and has been on gaviscon since she was 1 week and on zantac since she was 5 weeks. It no longer seems to be causing her pain but she is still sick after every feed and with burps and hicups. Is this the best I can hope for? She is eating well - 6oz 5 times a day and once at night and gaining weight. The main problem now is getting her to sleep thru the night as she is waking up sporadically; sometimes every hour (only being fed once) other times she can go till almost 4am. How can I train her to settle herslf when all is wants is cuddles and her dummy?
  • Hi Tigerlily13uk thank you for your question regarding your 11 week old baby.

    I think the advice for you to go dairy-free in your diet was the right thing to do, however it does sound like he has an associated degree of reflux going on as well. Babies can also be intolerant to the lactose in milk - and lactose is present in all mammals milk - which would give some of the symptoms you describe. Him being sick thirty minutes or so after eating suggests that it is the actual digestion process that is causing or exacerbating the reflux and firstly we need to try and make his food easier to digest.

    Using Colief - which you can buy at the pharmacy - may help. Colief is a natural enzyme - lactase, which helps to break down the milk sugars and makes the milk more digestible.

    The other problem is that when he is bringing up the stomach contents - gastric acid comes up as well and this is acid reflux - which gives intense heart burning like pain.

    You would need to go to your doctor and discuss the reflux symptoms and probably start a trial of using some infant gaviscon.

    The reason sucking soothes him is because he can suck and swallow to help wash away the pain from the acid heartburn in his oesophagus.

    Babies with this condition often become retentive with burping as they learn that what comes up, hurts - so they try to keep it down and hence that don't want to burp.

    I hope this helps

    A x
  • Hi angelheartuk1 that's for your post, I'm just sorry to hear your little one is suffering with reflux.

    Sadly it doesn't sound as though the gaviscon is going to be enough on its own to keep the symptoms of the reflux under control and I would definitely advise discussing the next step with yournGP about using Zantac/Ranitidine . It is widely used to treat reflux and there are very few side effects ever seen. The clear liquid she brings is mucousy acid and although the gaviscon is helping she is obviously still suffering.

    Also, she will not be able to sleep comfortably until the symptoms are brought under control so I would not advise any sort of sleep training until we know that the reflux is properly managed. We can then sort out the sleep issues and negative associations that may have built up and you will find a lot of info relating to this in my book the sensational baby sleep plan.

    I hope this answers you initial questions


    A x
  • Hi there baby_princessIOM, thank you for your question regarding your two year old.

    Sadly I see many older children and toddlers that still suffer with reflux.

    The problem is that many health professionals think that all babies out grow their reflux by around 6 to 12 months old, but this is actually often not the case.

    As babies mature and head towards 12 to 18 months it can seem like their reflux symptoms are no longer evident but many of actually just learn to deal with and self-manage the symptoms as it is just a normal way of life for them. They don't know any different and therefore do not give us many outward signs that they still have reflux.

    However, subtle symptoms are often still evident and violent hiccups can be one of them.

    If your toddler is fit, well, healthy, eats well, sleeps well and has no other behavioural issues than I would just accept the hiccups as normal for him and I'm sure in time they will stop.

    However, if he does have any negative associations to the things that I mention then I would suggest getting a referral to a paediatric gastro enterologist to discuss the symptoms that he still displays.

    Hope that helps

    A x
  • Sorry angelheartuk - I also meant to say that diagnostic tests for reflux are not ad Isobel at this stage as they are invasive and require a 24 hour stay in hospital. It is much preferable to see how they respond to the treatment before going down the road of the ph study, endoscopy and biopsies.
  • Hi Alison,

    I have followed your plan from day one and my 5 month old Elliot who slept through the night since 8 weeks old. However he started suffering from eczema since he was about 2 months old and now wakes frequently at night to itch. He goes down at 7pm and wakes from about 10pm and on the hour until 5 - 6 in the morning. I do use a dummy to help him sleep, I put it in his mouth and he will go down for a bit before waking again. I am also having to feed him in the middle of the night to calm him. Is there something I can do to get him back on track? He is on steroids cream for the eczema and improving, but still not sleeping through like he used to.

    Please let me know if there is something I can do to help him and me!

    many thanks,

  • Hi joclift1thank you for your question here on baby expert.

    How sad that your little girl is still suffering with her reflux even though she is on ranitidine and gaviscon.

    It can often be the case that the ranitidine is not effective enough for your baby or she may not be on the correct dose.

    Managing reflux in any baby though is also down to what milk and or food they are having and whether that are able to sleep well or not. It is not as simple as giving the baby some medicine and then expecting everything to be ok - sadly, it doesn't work like that. We always need to look at the bigger picture, so to speak, and address the milk/ food/sleep/routine issues at the same time as using medicine.

    If your baby is on the correct dose of ranitidine and still not responding then the next step would be to try changing the drug to Omeprazole in the form of Losec Mups dispersible tablet. There is masses of info in my book on the medications for reflux, their use and how to best administer them.

    I would also advise that you try to see a paediatric gastroenterologist to get the correct does of meds in place.

    Good luck

    A x
  • Hi liz8td and thank you for question regarding colic.

    Personally I struggle with the use of the word "colic" and, as I write in my book, there is no actual definition for the term colic.

    In the Oxford English Dictionary colic is described as "a non-descriptive term for abdominal pain"

    I find this quite useless and encourages us to just accept that itnisnok for babies to cry in pain because they "just have a bit of colic"!

    If a baby is crying inconsolably for more than 10 to 15 minutes two or three times each day then I say that there is something wrong and we should do our best to address the problem and bring the cause of the pain under control so that the crying decreases and stops.

    There are a multitude of reasons that could be causing evening crying and without knowing more about your baby's individual symptoms it will be difficult to give you a definite answer.

    The following are some of the probable causes

    Lack of sleep during the day which leads to over tiredness and screaming at the end of the day.

    Lack of feeding routine during the day and baby is hungry.

    Sometimes breasted babies can cry at this time in the evening through hunger, as mum's milk supply can be at it lowest after a long and tiring day.

    It could be a build up of undigested protein and or lactose after all the daytime feeds and makes the baby quite unsettled in the early evening - we would need to look at what and when the baby is drinking to see if this could be the cause.

    It could be that baby has mild case of reflux with symptoms that manifests around this time of day as the digestive system struggles to cope after a long day.

    I hope this steers you in the right direction and I'm sure you will find the info in my book useful

    A x
  • I'm aware that the scheduled time is coming to a close but I will stay online and answer the remaining questions posted

  • Mummycue, thanks for your question regarding your 8 week old.

    I'm glad to hear that she no longer seems to be in pain, but I would still question whether the reflux is truly under control or to.

    I would not accept that this is as good as it gets whilst there is still quite a substantial level of vomiting and spitting up.

    Some people say that if they are "happy- sputters" then we should just let them be and allow them to outgrow it.

    I strongly disagree and continual vomiting can lead other problems further down the line and it should be addressed and brought under control where possible.

    I suspect that her sporadic waking at night is still down to the reflux and her related discomfort, hence the cuddles and a dummy can often be the only thing that helps her to resettle.

    I would suggest you look at the reflux chapter in my book and explore the other options of managing the reflux symptoms first and then addressing sleep and night feeds as detailed in the book

    Hope that helps

    A x
  • Hi Gemma - freddiesmum2011

    I'm so sorry to hear you are hitting a brick wall with your GP and HV.

    Sadly I hear this all too often and it can be a complete nightmare trying to get them to listen to you, understand and even acknowledge that your baby has a problem.

    It is infuriating that because babies can't speak and don't have a voice, they - and you - are dismissed in this manner.

    I can only advise you to keep going to the GP and demand to be referred to a paediatric gastroenterologist ASAP and not leave until they agree to help you and your baby. Many of my clients have found the quickest route to get to see someone is going to A&E and have finally found the help they needed there.

    The problem with introducing solids in this case is that your baby already has a digestive system that is in distress and introducing new foods to him may not actually help until the basic reflux symptoms and pain are addressed.

    I wish you all the luck in the world and you could join me on my Facebook where you will meet other mums who have had the same problem.

    Alison x
  • Hi Helen - mrshelenjoyce, thanks for your question

    I'm glad you had success following my book and the sensational baby sleep plan but sorry to hear things have gone somewhat off-track.

    Before Elliot will be able to sleep properly again we need to look at the cause of his eczema.

    You don't say how you are feeding him and this is the most important thing to address in babies with eczema.

    Cows milk protein intolerance is the major cause of infant eczema and I would suggest that if you are breast feeding you need to go dairy and maybe even soya free or if he is formula fed then you would need to discuss with your specialist using a hydrolysed formula such as neocate.

    Until we can make Elliot more comfortable we cannot start any form of sleep trainin, so my advice is to find the root cause of the eczema and address that first.

    Do let me know how you get on

    A x
  • Thank you to all who posted questions and viewed this web chat.

    I hope that my answers have given some advice and tips that will help resolve the issues raised.

    More information can be found at my website and in my book The Sensational Baby Sleep Plan.

    I look forward to holding more web chats in the near future


  • Thank you Alison, Elliot was breastfed from birth until about 3 weeks ago when I started combination feeding. I decided to go half and half as he wasn't feeding well from my breast at the time when his eczema was at its worst making Elliot tired and unsettled. He has dropped from 9th percentile to 2nd percentile on the weight chart. I currently give him aptimil on the 11am and 3pm feed and he has breastmilk from a bottle in the morning and night. i started weaning him last week and he has taken well to babyrice, carrots and avocado so far.

    Will try dairy free for a while and see if this make a difference.
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