As a mother, getting my first baby two months ago meant that I had to make countless changes in my already busy schedule. I had to divide my time into more baby time and less time dealing with clients. But it was well worth it as my girl has taught me a lot. Especially about hiccups.
Her first hiccups were when she was two days old. I thought it was normal. However, by day four, she was hiccupping twice each day. And, the hiccups were persistent. I was worried. I checked in with my doctor and wasn’t prepared for what was to occur at the office. “I know you love wine…” he started off with the serious tone he always uses with clients. “Don’t you think that wine can be the cause of your baby’s hiccups?” he asked frankly. I had no idea of what to say. So he went on to explain how newborn hiccups can be the result of alcohol.
Hiccups are caused by sudden contraction of the diaphragm. This contraction can be the result of irritation of the phrenic nerve, acid movement or expansion of the stomach. The interesting thing is that alcohol has been found to cause all three! After this explanation, I finally realized why I hiccupped frequently after a couple glasses of wine.
Did I unintentionally cause my baby’s hiccups?
This was the question that ran through my mind as the doctor continued to explain the connection between alcohol in breast milk and hiccups. “When you consume any alcoholic drink, the alcohol is absorbed in most body fluids including blood and breast milk.” He explained.
I had the answer. But he had more to say. “However, alcohol doesn’t remain in breast milk otherwise drinking mom’s babies would be high most of the time.” He said lightheartedly.
The doctor continued to explain that the timeframe between taking wine and breastfeeding my little one plays a huge part on whether she is likely to have hiccups. In addition the amount of wine I consume before breastfeeding will also play a part.
What to do
While taking wine wasn’t completely restricted while I was breastfeeding, I was to cut down on the amount of wine consumed at a time. The next thing to do is ensure that I avoid breastfeeding my baby for at least 6 hours if I take wine. Well that seemed favorable since I could breastfeed her before taking a glass of wine and going to sleep.
My visit to the doctor that day opened my eyes about the connection between wine and hiccups in my baby. At least I learned sooner and took the necessary measures. I saw immediate results and although my girl hiccupped, it was less frequent.
Besides cutting on my wine consumption, I also found that making adjustments in my diet significantly reduced hiccups in my baby. For instance, I cut down on spicy foods which seemed to prompt acid movement in he stomach.