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Infant reflux occurs when food backs up (refluxes) from a baby's stomach, causing the baby to spit up. Sometimes called gastroesophageal reflux (GER), the condition is rarely serious and becomes less common as a baby gets older.


The most common symptoms in kids are:

  • Vomiting often

  • A cough that won’t go away

  • Refusing to eat or trouble eating (a child may choke or gag)

  • Crying during or after a feeding

  • Heartburn, gas, or belly pain


Reflux is often just the result of a baby's underdeveloped oesophagus (food canal). It usually stops when the baby reaches 12-14 months of age, when the ring of muscle at the bottom of their oesophagus fully develops and closes off, preventing stomach contents from leaking out. It's unusual if reflux continues at 18 months.

Gripe water is a natural remedy often used to soothe colicky babies. Ingredients vary depending on the manufacturer, but many versions of gripe water include fennel, ginger, peppermint, lemon balm, and chamomile. It is sometimes used by parents to ease symptoms of reflux.

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