What to Do when Newborn Vomiting Breastmilk

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Have you noticed your newborn vomiting breast milk? It can be really scary when this happens so let’s talk about what is normal and when to seek help for your baby. Here you’ll learn some signs to look for when your baby is repeatedly spitting up and breastfeeding baby tips that can benefit you and your child.

While breastfeeding has many advantages for the growth and health of your baby, there may be some issues along the way. Infants who vomit breastmilk are a frequent problem for nursing mothers. To make sure your child is healthy and happy, it’s crucial to understand what’s typical and when to get assistance.

Breastfeeding can be a beautiful experience, but not when your baby is having constant issues that are causing you additional stress.

Scroll on and we’ll walk you through how to determine if your infant’s spit-up is serious and needs medical attention plus some proactive things you can do to help your baby and prevent excessive vomiting.

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What Is and Is Not Normal

During or after feedings, newborns frequently spit up or regurgitate a tiny amount of breast milk, especially during the early weeks. Some may even spit up what looks like curdled milk. Given that their digestive systems are still developing and that some spitting up is normal, this generally poses no threat.

So how can you tell if your baby vomiting breast milk is a problem or just normal?

Here are some questions to determine if it’s typical infant vomiting:


How often is your baby spitting up?

For the majority of babies, the occasional spit-up is regarded as typical. They might do this daily, particularly before or after meals.


How much is your baby spitting up?

The average amount of baby spit-up is modest, perhaps a teaspoon or less. It shouldn’t be excessive or veer towards the projectile.


What’s your baby’s disposition like?

Infants who normally spit up without any alarming concern tend to be content and weight gain is steady. They may smile or giggle after spitting up.

However, if your baby vomits frequently, and strongly, and it seems to disturb them, it might indicate a deeper problem, and the need to seek further advice.

Warning Signs That Indicate Newborn Breastmilk Vomiting Is Not Normal

Even though the majority of cases of newborn vomiting breastmilk are harmless and they are happy spitters, it’s important to know when you should consult a doctor.

These warning indicators or baby’s symptoms listed below could point to a problem that needs to be addressed so that both of you can have a more pleasant breastfeeding journey.

Excessive Vomiting

It’s concerning if your infant consistently throws up a lot of breast milk after most feedings.

Do you need to change bibs frequently or constantly need more burp clothes? Does your baby soak themselves when they spit up and need to change clothes? These are signs of excessive vomiting.

Projectile vomiting

Persistent, projectile, and forceful vomiting is a sign of some severe condition that can be a sign of a blockage or pyloric stenosis which is common from birth to 6 months of age. It could also be a sign of reflux, so if this persists reach out to your care provider and follow the tips below.

Weight Loss

Considerable and rapid weight loss in your infant or baby not gaining weight according to age may indicate a feeding problem that requires immediate attention.

One thing I found helpful is to track infant weight gain in the early months with a baby scale like this one. It just gives you extra confidence in between doctor appointments to know your baby is gaining or losing weight when breastfeeding.

Irritability or Discomfort

If your infant exhibits signs of discomfort, irritability, or suffering while being fed or immediately afterward, or if they refuse feedings repeatedly, this is a sign that the spitting up is a problem.

Some irritability after feedings can be normal, but consistently being fussy during or after eating is a sign that needs to be addressed so your infant can grow and thrive at this vital time.

Back Arching

Back arching is a frequent sign of discomfort or reflux, especially when feeding.

Vomit with Blood or a Green Color

If the baby vomits with blood, a yellowish or a greenish tint, or something like coffee grounds, this is a serious sign that you should contact their care provider.

Unusual Coughing or Wheezing

These signs and symptoms including difficulty in breathing may point to a more serious issue.

Dehydration Signs

Dry mouth, reduced number of wet diapers, lethargy, or sunken fontanelle are all symptoms of dehydration that can be the result of excessive baby vomiting.

Any one of these signs can be concerning as a mother, but seeing multiple of these symptoms or anyone consistently is a good reason to take action and seek guidance.

Potential Causes of Vomiting

The cause of a newborn throwing up breastmilk can vary. You can find the cause and get the right help if you understand what may be contributing to your newborn’s vomiting.

Typical causes of newborn vomiting include:


Your baby may spit up extra milk if they are taking in too much milk that is more than the baby’s tummy can handle. Tracking feedings in a printable breastfeeding log can help you easily see how often you are feeding and if this is an issue.


When the valve separating the esophagus from the stomach is immature, stomach contents can flow back up into the esophagus causing infant reflux. Reflux in breastfeeding infants is often caused by acidic food in the mother’s diet, which is easily preventable.

Read this list of foods to avoid when breastfeeding baby with acid reflux.

Food Sensitivity or Allergies

Along the same line, some infants may be sensitive to particular foods in their mother’s diet, which can cause nausea, vomiting, or discomfort. Dairy is often a culprit, but there are several other common foods to avoid while breastfeeding that can give your infant trouble.

Slow Digestion

A digestive system including the stomach and small intestine of your baby that is still growing may take some time to digest breast milk, resulting in spit-up and this is a common cause for newborns vomiting breast milk. For most babies, spit-up will naturally decrease as the digestive system matures.

Disease or Infection

Some illnesses or infections can make newborns throw up. If you can eliminate the other causes above and are still struggling with your baby vomiting excessively, consult a doctor to help you rule out any potential illnesses.

Making Dietary Changes While Breastfeeding

A lot of Moms don’t realize it, but your diet as a nursing mother can have a big impact on your baby’s health. it is important to know the foods to avoid while breastfeeding generally and also when breastfeeding a baby with a reflux issue.

Here are some things you can do if you believe that your diet may be contributing to your baby’s vomiting:

  1. Try an Elimination diet if you think you may have food sensitivities or allergies. Common trigger foods include dairy, soy, wheat, nuts, and eggs. To keep track of any changes in your baby’s symptoms, keep a food log. This simple breastfeeding meal plan is dairy-free, gluten-free, and soy-free.
  2. Steer clear of caffeine, alcohol, spicy, citrus, processed, and too many fatty foods because they may make some babies uncomfortable by increasing stomach acid and causing gastroesophageal reflux. Avoid fizzy drinks and too acidic fruit juices.
  3. Try smaller, more frequent feedings throughout the day rather than larger portions a few times a day.
  4. Probiotics: According to certain research, probiotics may aid in easing colic and enhancing digestion in breastfeeding infants. However, before giving your infant any supplements, speak with your pediatrician.

Tips For Managing Newborns Who Spits Up Breastmilk

Even though a newborn throwing up breastmilk can be alarming, there are some simple things you can do daily to lessen your baby’s discomfort and reduce spit-up incidences.

Here are some helpful tips to control your baby’s throwing up and make nursing more comfortable:

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Burp Your Infant Frequently

Frequent burping might assist in releasing trapped air and lessen the likelihood of spitting up.

Hold Baby Upright

For at least 30 minutes following a feeding, holding your baby in an upright position can promote digestion and reduce reflux. To give yourself a break, try putting them in a bouncer (without vibration on) or holding them in a baby carrier for that time.

Avoid Tight Clothing

To relieve strain on your baby’s stomach, dress them in loose, comfortable clothing.

Find The Right Feeding Position And the Right Amount of Milk

This can be the tricky part, but the more you feed the better you will both get at it. Try out several feeding positions, such as side-lying or reclining, to see which is most comfortable for your infant’s feeding.

Frequent feedings with smaller amounts of milk instead of large ones at one time also help.

Sleep The Baby On Back

The recommendation is to let your baby sleep on his or her back instead of tummy as it might help in reducing the risk of vomiting. A safe crib wedge like this can be really helpful for slightly elevating your baby while they are sleeping to help with indigestion issues that cause vomiting.

Gentle Movement

Your infant can be calmed and helped to digest by you gently rocking or swaying them.

You may handle your newborn vomiting breastmilk with more confidence by using these practical suggestions and paying attention to your baby’s cues. Having less stress can also help you cherish the priceless opportunities for bonding that arise during breastfeeding.

Striking the Right Balance

Although it can be upsetting to witness your infant vomit breastmilk, in many instances, it is a typical stage of growth. For many babies, they outgrow digestive sensitivities around 6-8 months old.

Whether you are breastfeeding or bottle-feeding, knowing what is normal and what is not might reassure you and aid in your decision-making.

Anytime you have questions about your baby’s health, don’t hesitate to call the healthcare provider, lactation consultant, or pediatrician. They are there to help.

If you haven’t already, taking a breastfeeding course can help too.

You can strike the ideal balance for your health and your baby’s health by making mindful adjustments to what you eat while breastfeeding and asking for help when necessary. Here’s to happy breastfeeding, and healthy babies!

More on Breastfeeding Baby

14 Beginner Breastfeeding Tips for New Moms

Breastfeeding Diet Tips (all Moms should know!)

Foods to Avoid when Breastfeeding a Gassy Baby

11 Foods That Increase Milk Supply

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