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Gaviscon Infant

Dr Karen Martin
Reviewed by Dr Karen MartinReviewed on 19.10.2023 | 2 minutes read
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Gaviscon Infant Sachets are available over the counter for children under 2 years but should only be used under the recommendation of a healthcare professional. They are used to treat gastric reflux (heartburn) and regurgitation. This happens when stomach contents move up the food pipe (esophagus), which can cause your child to feel uncomfortable. This is common in infants, as they can have an undeveloped muscle that prevents movement of the stomach contents back up the food pipe. This product is not available in the US. Speak to your doctor or pharmacist about an appropriate alternative.

Gaviscon Infant Sachets contain a powder mixture; the two active ingredients are sodium alginate and magnesium alginate.

Doctor’s advice

How much should I give them?

Infants weighing 4.5 kg or below can be given one sachet when required, no more than six times a day.

Infants weighing more than 4.5 kg can be given two sachets when required, no more than six times a day.

If your infant is breastfed, mix the powder in 5 ml of cooled water to form a smooth paste. After that, mix in another 10 ml of cooled boiled water and give to your infant part way through a feed using a feeding bottle or a spoon. Follow these same directions if your infant has been weaned but give the mixture to them at the end of a meal.

If your infant is bottle-fed, mix the powder with 115 ml of feed in the bottle, shake the mixture well, and give the feed as normal.

How does it work?

Sodium alginate and magnesium alginate are raft-forming agents; they form a layer of foam at the top of the stomach, preventing the movement of stomach contents up the esophagus.

Who should not take the medication?

Do not give your child Gaviscon Infant Sachets if they have previously had an allergic reaction to any of the ingredients listed in the medication. Also, avoid giving Gaviscon Infant Sachets to your child if they - are premature, are under 1 year old, have blocked intestines, are sick, have a fever, have diarrhea, have kidney problems, or are on a low sodium diet, unless their doctor has said otherwise.

Gaviscon Infant Sachets should not be used with feed thickeners and are not suitable for anyone over 2 years of age.

Are there any side effects?

Side effects can include diarrhea, constipation, bloating, and other stomach (gastrointestinal) side effects. Your doctor will likely have considered these when recommending starting the medication.

As with any medication, seek urgent medical advice if any symptoms develop of an allergic reaction, such as a skin rash, shortness of breath, wheezing, or swelling of the tongue, mouth, lips, face, or throat.

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This article has been written by UK-based doctors and pharmacists, so some advice may not apply to US users and some suggested treatments may not be available. For more information, please see our T&Cs.
Dr Karen Martin
Reviewed by Dr Karen Martin
Reviewed on 19.10.2023
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