Babies: 0 - 3 Months

whats the deal with sleeping on back and spitting up?

Doesn't it seem like a bad idea to have baby sleeping on their back in case they spit up? I'm a FTM and LO has just had her first spit up....and now I'm paranoid about putting her on her back! And I exclusively BF.
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Re: whats the deal with sleeping on back and spitting up?

  • My LO spits up a lot. It usually just runs right out one side of her mouth if she's on her back. She often has her head turned to one side anyway when sleeping.
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  • mpaynempayne
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    Thank you for posting this, I have been wondering the same thing... I will be curious to see what people say. GL and know that you are not alone, my daughter still does this (almost all the time.)

  • My LO also spits up while on his back. Since he started doing this last week, I try to make sure he has burped good and well before setting him down too quickly. If I do need to put him down for a moment I try to find someplace reclined like the swing or the bouncer. He usually needs a diaper change after eating, too, but I try to burp him before putting him on the changing table. He seems to spit up less if he has burped and is upright or reclined for a few minutes after eating.
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  • Babies (and all humans) have a naturAl gag reflex that keeps them from inhaling spit up while on their back. There is no increased risk of choking on their backs. 
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  • image jennyann28:
    My LO spits up a lot. It usually just runs right out one side of her mouth if she's on her back. She often has her head turned to one side anyway when sleeping.

    This.

    From the AAP regarding back sleeping concerns: Spitting up and vomiting. The most common concern we hear is the understandable but unfounded fear that babies will spit up and choke while on their backs. Fortunately, several reassuring studies as well as the test of time have demonstrated that healthy babies put to sleep on their backs are not only able to turn their heads and/or protect their airways if and when they spit up, but are no more likely to have breathing or digestive-related problems than their belly-sleeping counterparts of years past.

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  • Baby will have their head turned to the side... They will spit up to the side. If it goes out the nose... which can happen on stomach as well they will cry and you will go and suction the nose.

    Back makes more sense to me because they wont smoosh their faces into the mattress like they could on their stomachs. Imagine if they spit up like that?


  • image katcarls:

    image jennyann28:
    My LO spits up a lot. It usually just runs right out one side of her mouth if she's on her back. She often has her head turned to one side anyway when sleeping.

    This.

    From the AAP regarding back sleeping concerns: Spitting up and vomiting. The most common concern we hear is the understandable but unfounded fear that babies will spit up and choke while on their backs. Fortunately, several reassuring studies as well as the test of time have demonstrated that healthy babies put to sleep on their backs are not only able to turn their heads and/or protect their airways if and when they spit up, but are no more likely to have breathing or digestive-related problems than their belly-sleeping counterparts of years past.

    This. But you aren't alone...aspiration is always in the back of my head too. I just keep L upright for at least 30 minutes after a feeding and for now he sleeps nights in his RnP so he is elevated and it makes me feel better about the spitting up issue. 

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