Is It Normal For Babies To Spit Up Blood?

Babies To Spit Up Blood

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Breastfed babies usually spit up thin milky fluid whereas formula fed babies spit up material that looks similar to cottage cheese. Spitting up through mouth and nose is quite common in babies. But if your little one spits up bright red or brown colored blood along with milky fluid, it is surely a cause for concern. You need to take it immediately to your doctor’s notice.

Blood on the digestive system may be one of the reasons of something really wrong which requires immediate treatment. But while you are waiting for the call back from the doctor, there are certain things that may help you to settle down about blood spitting symptom.

Causes Of Baby Spitting Up Blood:

There are many reasons behind spitting up of blood and the severity may also vary from baby to baby.

1. Cracked And Sore Nipples:

In most of the breastfeeding babies, the blood the baby spits up is usually from the mother and not from the baby’s body system. It can happen if you have sore or cracked nipples. It is common for nursing moms especially who has just started nursing to experience irritation in the nipples due to the pulling and pressure, or because of the exposure of skin to saliva. It may turn so bad that the skin cracks and bleeds. It subsides with the healing of nipples.

Most of the time, a healthy breastfeeding infant who spits up a little blood has swallowed from her mother’s sore nipple. The blood irritates the tummy and it regurgigates. If you do not see any crack, try to express some milk and check if it emits a blood ting.

If you observe blood in your breast milk or on your nipple, offer some sugar water or plain water to your baby after a feeding so that the blood clears away from his tummy. Stop feeding through the cracked nipple for a few days until it heals. You can use a nipple shield available in pharmacies to avoid irritation to the healing nipple while you can still breastfeed your baby from that breast.

The blood that passes with the breastmilk will also mix with intestine, and you may see blood in your baby’s stool as well.

If you find no blood from the nipple, or if your baby is on formula feed and you can still find her spitting blood, your baby should be immediately taken to the doctor.

2. Swallowed Blood During Delivery:

If your baby spits up blood shortly after birth, there is nothing to worry. It may be the maternal fetal blood your baby might have swallowed during delivery. However, you should bring to your doctor’s notice so that he or she will monitor your baby.

3. Forceful Spitting Up:

In rare cases, your baby may forcibly spit up, causing a tiny tear in the blood vessel present in the esophagus. It is nothing of worry again, as it heals quickly with time.

4. Esophagitis:

It is an inflammation which damages the tissues in the esophagus, a muscular tube that delivers food from the mouth to the stomach.

When To Call The Doctor?

If none of the above causes are the reasons behind your baby spitting up blood and if it continues to persist, you should definitely take him to a paediatrician.

Tell the paediatrician about all the signs and symptoms your baby is experiencing such as fever, constipation, colic, distended stomach, etc. So that your baby’s doctor will explain what action need to be taken for you and your little one.

If your baby is having symptoms like green vomiting, abdominal distention, fever or lethargy, you need to seek an immediate medical care.

Tips To Reduce Spitting Up In Babies:

Follow some simple tips to help lessen the frequency of your baby spitting up. They are as follows:

1. Burp Your Baby:

Take time to burp your baby after each feeding session. It can keep the air from building up in your baby’s stomach, and avoid spit-ups.

[ Read: Baby Burp Cloths ]

2. No Physical Activity:

Keep your baby upright for at least 30 minutes after every feed. Avoid immediate active play or use of swings.

3. Small and Frequent Feedings:

Try smaller and frequent feeding sessions. As the baby’s stomach is really small, do not overfeed him in a single session.

Hope you got to know why your little one spits up blood. If you have any more tricks that helped your baby reduce spitting up, kindly share with us in the comments box below.

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Rebecca Malachi

She is a Biotechnologist with a proficiency in areas of genetics, immunology, microbiology, bio-engineering, chemical engineering, medicine, pharmaceuticals to name a few. Her expertise in these fields has greatly assisted her in writing medical and life science articles. With 8+ years of work experience in writing for health and wellness, she is now a full-time contributor for She is passionate about giving research-based information to readers in need. Apart from writing, she is a foodie, loves travel, fond of gospel music and enjoys observing nature in silence. Know more about her at:
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