I've posted a lot about my guys feeding issues. He literally hates eating and we've spent five long months of dealing with bottle refusal, feeding him in his sleep, etc. We started Prilosec for suspected silent reflux almost 2 weeks ago and it has made some significant improvement in his eating. He still does not like eating but he is now up to taking between 30-34 ounces daily and most of it while awake, which is a big improvement. However, Tuesday we had a Video Swallow Study done on him and it showed that he has immature swallowing abilities and some of his liquid is penetrating his airway when he swallows. He's never had any signs of aspirating, doesn't choke or cough when eating, doesn't sound congested, no history of illnesses, etc.
We've been instructed to thicken his formula to a "honey" consistency using rice or oatmeal cereal, but putting 1 tbsp per ounce of formula. This is REALLY thick and he HATES it. I feel like we are regressing now, because he is back to refusing bottles and he won't even take the thickened bottles in his sleep, so we are really struggling to get ounces down him. He is also filling up quickly on all of the cereal and becoming bloated and severely constipated. I've resorted to giving him him unthickened formula, just to get food in him and he drinks that just fine.
I understand that potential aspiration is dangerous and his formula compromising his airways is uncomfortable, but on the other hand, I feel like we are creating more feeding aversions when we were just starting to get better. The speech pathologist said that most kids outgrow this issue relatively soon, when their bodies become stronger and more mobile and also that treating his reflux could help swallowing to improve.
Part of me wants to just give him the unthickened formula, unless he begins to show signs of discomfort when eating or clear signs of aspiration, but the SLP said that she couldn't advise this, but we could do what we wanted. Our GI almost cancelled the swallow study, because he was doing better and showed no clear signs of aspiration, so part of me wonders how many kids out there deal with this and it goes undiagnosed and they eventually out grow it without anyone ever knowing.
We've struggled so much with eating that I truly can't go back to struggling with bottles and seeing him so unhappy and uncomfortable while eating. But, everytime I give him a normal bottle, which he drinks just fine, I can't help but think that he's hurting because some liquid is going the wrong way.
Anyway, if you made it this far, thank you! And please, no flaming or criticizing, I'm truly at my breaking point in dealing with my poor guy's eating issues and there is no win either way I go, so please understand that I'm just trying to find a way to help my kid and get us through this. Does anyone have any experience with this, advice, suggestions, thoughts? Thank you again!