When your baby is in pain and apparently suffering from heartburn, it’s easy to jump to wondering can I give my baby Maalox. After all, it’s effective in giving you relief, and there’s some in the medicine cabinet, so it seems like a quick fix that can bring comfort to your child right away.
But what works for us and what is recommended for babies are worlds apart. Therefore it’s not a good idea to give them medications that aren’t specifically formulated for them, and this includes Maalox in all its forms. For all intents and purposes your baby’s digestive system is a blank slate, and the potency of antacids such as Maalox can severely disrupt their inner workings.
Can I Give My Baby Maalox? Answer: No.
Maalox is manufactured for adults, and does not come in an infant-strength variety. If you suspect that your baby is suffering from heartburn, indigestion, or acid reflux, and the pain doesn’t seem to be subsiding, you can take them to the doctor and they can treat them with proper alternatives made for babies.
Again, it is not recommended to give your baby a medication made for adults. You may not be accurately diagnosing what is wrong with your child, as they are not able to tell you why they are crying, or what is hurting. It can be hard to watch your baby suffer, but their discomfort should subside and with a little fine-tuning going forward you should be able to avoid this from happening again.
Alternatives to Maalox
So if you can’t give your baby Maalox, what can you give them to help them through this? The answer is just to wait it out. With time they’ll make it through this current state and return to normalcy. In our instant gratification society of the adult world we just pop pills and take medicine in order to provide immediate relief. We don’t give it a second thought. But it’s good that you did your research first before giving your baby an adult strength antacid. Just comfort them as best as you can, give them a bath, give them a massage. This will help them digest their food and get over it more quickly.
Even though it’s been shown that Maalox is OK to take during pregnancy, this does not mean that it’s safe for your baby. When still in the womb a fetus is protected and only receives things second-hand from the mother. After childbirth there is no more filter. Giving a baby a direct dose is much, much different than a pregnant mother taking Maalox, and is to be avoided.
Prevention is the Best Medicine
Rather than treating the symptoms that Maalox treats, it’s better to get to the cause of why your baby is experience this discomfort. It could be caused by overfeeding, or giving them foods they’re not ready for. By paying closer attention to what you’re giving your baby, you can prevent this from happening in the future.
One common cause for indigestion in infants is giving them too much formula or breast milk. This is something you should monitor, as your baby may tend to keep drinking and drinking as long as there is a bottle or a nipple in its mouth. While it can be tricky at first, determining how much food your baby needs is something that you will develop in time. This learning process will often entail giving your baby too much in one sitting.
They will usually tell you when they’ve had too much by spitting up the excess. At these times, remember how much you gave them and give them less next time.
Infant Digestive Systems
The digestive system of an infant is still forming, and in its underdeveloped state it can be quite sensitive to new foods. You’ve no doubt noticed that they pass gas pretty regularly, and that their stools are nice and smooth. This is a sign that their system is clean and new, unlike that of an adult’s.
Major Organs Still Forming
Your baby’s major organs are still forming inside them, and are still figuring out what they’re designed for. This is why it’s a good idea to monitor their intake of all foods. Since you are the ultimate gatekeeper of what goes into their system, and how much of it, you should take your role very seriously.
Respect that your new baby is going through the development process, and do your best to nurture them with proper portions of easy-to-digest foods. This will help prevent the need for things like Maalox and other medication.