Grunting — The Bump
Babies: 0 - 3 Months


DD is not quite 2 weeks old. After nursing she grunts a lot. Sometimes the grunting escalates to some crying (usually a squall or 2 then back to grunting) and it's almost always accompanied with a little spit up (not stomach emptying, but something just about everytime). It sounds like she's working on a heavy BM, but she can do this for up to an hour. As soon as I pick her up she settles down, but if I put her back down she starts back up again. All of this seems to be worse at night (though that could just be me more aware of it because DH and I are trying to get back to sleep). Eventually she'll get quiet and we can all sleep, but all the grunting for how long it lasts just doesn't seem right. I will be calling the pedi after they open today for some insight from them, but figured I'd check here to see if anyone had any experience with anything like this. The only thing I can think of is she's having issues with digesting my milk, but it only started a few days ago and I don't know if that's something you'd have from day 1 or would develop over time.

Re: Grunting

  • Sounds like very normal newborn "I'm having trouble passing gas" grunting.  Delcan does the exact same thing and it is worse at night because laying down makes it worse (vs. during the day when I am mostly wearing him and he is upright).

    As their digestive systems mature, it gets better.  Bicycling legs can help get the gas out.
  • Gas! Of course. I do burp mid feeding and after we're done, but maybe not enough. I did think it seemed worse at night when she was lying flat vs daytime in her bouncy seat with an incline. I had put a rolled up blanket under her cradle mattress, but all the grunting and movement associated with it had her sliding down it. I actually put her in the bouncy seat last night to get some extra sleep. Thanks for the thoughts on this! DS was gassy, but never so noisy about it. It may be time for her to go into her own room at night now.
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  • agree with PP.

    my LO is a grunter also

    she used to grunt a lot during nursing and i didn't know why.  it took me a little while to pick up that it was one of her "i need to be burped" signs.  after i started burping her more it got better

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  • I was very concerned with the amount of grunting my little guy was doing during feedings. It turns out grunting can also be a sign of acid reflux. We were prescribed a liquid medication similar to zantac. And there is also formula out there specifically for acid reflux. We were also told to let baby sleep on an incline. They do grow out of it usually within a few months.
  • Just as PP said, my sweet LO is also a grunter, she is now 8 weeks- this week.. and has been a grunter since day 1! She still grunts, and I have discovered she does have pretty bad gas, so I burp her several times a day.. even in-between feedings (like when she wakes from a nap before she eats). She also has silent reflux, and lots of grunting can be an indicator of this. Even if you don't see a lot of spit up, they could be swallowing it...which is what my LO does..and this is what the "silent" in this form of reflux means. So for me, all the grunting meant gas, and reflux.. The fact that it seems to get worse at night seems to indicate a reflux issue as well. Try lots of extra burping throughout the day, always feeding baby at a 45 degree angle, as well as keeping the bottle at a 45 degree angle. Keep LO sitting up for 20-30 minutes after every feeding and this will help as well. Good luck! :)


  • XathXath
    Eighth Anniversary 1000 Comments 500 Love Its Photogenic
    Babies are loud.  Their respiratory system is tiny, so exertions that would pass through our tract without sounds cause sound-making vibrations in theirs.  My boys were both extremely loud at this stage.  Before they knew how to poop (to relax one muscle group while tightening another), they'd just strain about every muscle in their body to try to get it out.  So that caused frequent grunts and spit-up out the top end while they tried to get stuff out the bottom.

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