Clinical Reference Systems: Pediatric Advisor 10.0
Spitting Up by Infants - Brief Version
What is spitting up?
Spitting up is the effortless loss of one or two mouthfuls
of stomach contents. Milk just rolls out of the mouth,
often with a burp. It usually happens shortly after
feedings. Spitting up usually happens between birth to 1
year of age. More than half of all infants spit up to some
Babies spit up because the valve (ring of muscle) at the top
of the stomach does not close very well. Your baby will
stop spitting up as he gets older.
How can I help my child?
- Feed smaller amounts.
Overfeeding always makes spitting up worse. If the
stomach is completely full, spitting up is more likely.
Give smaller amounts (at least 1 ounce less than you have
been giving). Wait at least 2 and 1/2 hours between
- Avoid pressure on your child's stomach.
Avoid tight diapers. They put added pressure on the
stomach. Don't let people play roughly with your baby
right after meals.
- Keep your child in an upright position after meals.
After meals, try to keep your baby in an upright position
using a frontpack, backpack, or swing for 30 minutes.
Call your child's doctor right away if:
- Any blood is seen in the spit-up material.
- The spitting up causes your child to choke or cough.
Call your child's doctor during office hours if:
- Your baby doesn't seem to improve with this approach.
- Your baby does not gain weight normally.
- You have other concerns or questions.