Mother knows best

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I was pouring with perspiration after four hours of trying to soothe my three week old baby, he had finally stopped screaming and fallen asleep, this was the second night in a row. I had tried everything in an attempt to figure out what was causing his distress though I noted it all started after taking a few suckles from the breast. My partner and I were stumped and quite frankly exhausted from it all. During this four hour crying session our son had turned a bright red, was refusing to feed, did not have a dirty diaper, did not like being swaddled, did not seem to have any visible pains (like a nappy rash and so forth). We tried singing, rocking, feeding, bottle, changing, swaddling, cooling, warming, gripe water and so much more – nothing helped. Of course we were very concerned and we booked an appointment to see our child’s pediatrician. She immediately diagnosed him with Colic. I was not happy with this diagnosis, first of all I really don’t believe in determining a baby to be a Colicky baby and that you should just let them cry it out and they will eventually come right, no, babies do not just cry like that for nothing, they are distressed and in pain for a reason. After a few more nights of this repeated crying I booked another appointment with her so which she reassured me again that it was just a phase and he should grow out of it by three months. I asked her whether she thought there could be a possibility that he had Acid Reflux because my nephew had it and a lot of the symptoms I had been observing were very similar to his. She was adamant that he did not have acid reflux. We decided to consult another pediatrician (unfortunately we only have two on this island) and he said very much the same thing. He said to me, “if it is reflux he will vomit and he will turn red” I was quite suprised by this and I exclaimed yes! he turns red, a deep red, he has vomited a few times after having a bottle but mostly I noted a liquid noise in his throat before the  crying started. He was still not convinced but scheduled us to see a specialist who will be visiting the island in a few months. So we struggled through, the crying bouts started to be more frequent and I was starting to feel extremely disheartened and quite frankly depressed. Depressed to the point that I would sob in anguish when my son would finally sleep and I had thoughts of throwing him in the trash – I struggle to admit this but there it is, I loathed myself for feeling this way. I was torn because I had bonded with my son from birth and loved him but all the sleepless nights and stress was taking it’s toll on me. I was beyond tired and emotional. It was extremely hard as my partner worked most evenings so I was alone with my new “colicky” baby and my potty training two year old. During this all both my grandparents passed away within a month of each other and I had to make quick exits at both funerals to avoid other people having to put up with my crying baby. We somehow made it to the day of the specialists visit and lo and behold, he listened to my story and immediately pronounced that our baby had Silent Acid Reflux (he didn’t often vomit because he was swallowing it back down) and prescribed Omeprazole for our little one. I was both relived to finally have a proper diagnosis and treatment for my baby and livid that our concerns were not taken seriously in the first place. We could have avoided so many months of tears and pain if our baby’s doctor had diagnosed him correctly in the first place. Once on treatment my son improved immediately, it was amazing. I had my happy baby back!

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In short, to all you Mums going through something similar, trust your intuition and fight for your baby, these doctors may have degree’s and so forth but it’s like they say “Mother knows best.”

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