Last week I received a heartfelt email from Hayley for our support. Hayley’s little boy, Nathan, suffered horribly as a newborn from reflux and a milk protein allergy, however, it took until he was admitted to hospital until the health professionals would listen to her. I do think the NHS did a wonderful job for me, but being a new mum is filled with anxiety and this isn’t the first time I’ve heard stories like this from mums; they know there is something wrong but they really have to push for help. Hayley is raising awareness of reflux in babies and I really wanted to help with Hayley’s cause, so I’m sharing her letter with you in full.

Reflux in Babies – Hayley’s Story

Hi Hannah,

I’m writing to ask for your help. I was wondering whether it would be possible for you to cover our story.

It would help to raise awareness of reflux and allergies in babies and is linked with an article published on reflux and the new NICE guidelines last month.

In response to these guidelines I have created a petition and it’s had an outstanding response. Within the first five hours of going live we had over 600 signatures. At present we now have over 5,000 signatures. Celebrities such as Paddy McGuinness, Coleen Noleen, Sherrie Hewson, Karen Millen and Kym Marsh, to name a few, have all signed and tweeted the petition link.

Since creating this petition I have spoken with hundreds, if not thousands, of parents who are dealing with reflux in babies all over the country and are in desperate need of more awareness by GPs and medical professionals.

Indeed, it’s not until you are faced with a baby with reflux and allergies that you ever come across these issues. And, they are quite obviously affecting many parents and babies across the UK. Here is Nathan’s Story.

*You can Sign the petition here*

Nathan’s Reflux Story.

My little boy has had a testing time battling reflux and cows milk protein allergy. The advice and help we received from our GP was awful. I was left upset and frustrated and my little boy Nathan was left in distress and pain because the numerous GPs we saw would not believe me that he had reflux and cows milk protein allergy.

I suffer from a milk allergy myself so I could see the signs clearly in my little boy. I asked for a milk free formula to be prescribed as his full body rash, explosive stools, projectile vomiting and choking /coughing episodes were getting worse by the day. After weeks of battling and being told my little boy had baby acne and colic we ended up in an emergency ambulance admission to hospital.

Hayley shares her story about reflux in babies and milk protein allergy

Nathan’s allergic reaction to cows milk protein

Nathan had turned blue in the face and lips with choking and was finding it difficult to breath. The choking was getting worse and the GPs I saw just told me I was over anxious and looking too far into things. They said if I wanted to change his formula then just to put him on a Lactose free milk or comfort milk. I explained that I didn’t think he was lactose intolerant. In fact I could see he had a milk protein allergy. The General practitioners just looked at me and never responded.

When your child is in pain and cannot be placed down in their Moses basket for five minutes because of the constant squirming, grunting and crying with pain, you are anxious and upset and you want someone to help your child. You feel helpless and the one place you think will help you just dismiss you as an anxious new mum.

Indeed, their first words before evening viewing your baby are, ” is this your first child?… and your child will get upset if you are upset. They can feel anxiety!”

Even though you know 100% what is wrong with your child they decline to help.

The NHS only started listening to me once Nathan was admitted to hospital and we started getting somewhere.

Within 72 hours of having the milk free formula (Nutramigen) and medication he was a new baby and within three weeks his symptoms completely went.

Nathan's allergic reaction to cows milk protein

Many stories mirror that of Nathan’s. Some babies have been left so long without treatment that tube feeding has been the last option and permanent damage has been caused to their throats.

It is for this reason, I have created the government petition to ask that parents of reflux and allergy babies / infants – receive more help and support and that we are listened to, not just dismissed as over anxious fussy parents. It seems from the petition response already that the need to raise awareness of this is massive.

The petition also comments on the great concern amongst parents regarding the NICE draft guidelines published. If these guidelines are brought into play by the government, then parents face an even larger struggle for reflux to be diagnosed and treated. We know we are in a recession and money needs to be saved but from what the guidance is proposing it’s going to be at the cost of thousands of innocent babies who have no voice, only their parents to speak out for them.

Thank you so much for taking the time to read the brief description of Nathan’s journey. We certainly hope that with your help we can raise the awareness that’s desperately needed.

The story has also been covered by ITV news and the Daily Mail and had awareness made via Mummy Pages GB and Parentdish. Please find attached the links below.

Many Thanks,
Hayley Edwards.

Thank you Hayley xx

Did your baby suffer from reflux in babies or allergies? Please do share your experience below

If you would like to show Hayley’s campaign support you can sign the petition here.