Three Year Old Still Gags and Throws Up

Updated on August 28, 2010
J.C. asks from Columbus, OH
6 answers

So Sam has never been a good eater. Threw up A LOT as a baby and toddler. Now that he's a little man of three years old, he still has those moments when the bread gets stuck on the roof of his mouth and he dislikes the feeling so much, he gags and then throws up. And he throws up everything. This has happened four times in the last two weeks.

I know some of us are just wussies and can't even swallow a pill (ahem, me for one) But I'm wondering if there's something more to this. Could his palate be underdeveloped, or his tonsils too big, or ... sheesh. Something? I just don't know. I may just be reading too much into it and he just has a weak gag reflex. But what if it's something else?

Please, if anyone has any suggestions or stories to share, please help. I'm trying to convince myself that I'm not LOOKING for something to be wrong with him. And yet, something in my gut is telling me it's not normal.

Please help Ladies,

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answers from Cincinnati on

First, have you mentioned this to the pediatrician? If you haven't I would do so, to see what he/she says.

You might want to consider making a journal. Note what he was eating, when, whether he vomited or just gagged, etc. This might help you see a pattern.

Another thing to consider is taking him to see a Gastroenterologist. They would be able to tell if maybe something is wrong with the esophagus, or if there is some kind of abnormal gag reflex.



answers from Boston on

One thing to consider - throwing up can be a reaction to food. We thought similarly that our son just maintained a strong gag reflex, but it turns out he was gagging/vomiting on specific foods, to which he had an allergy.



answers from South Bend on

My son did this too! Not just with bread though. He also snored. Two very different things...but, finally took him to see an ENT for his snoring, and they said his tonsils wers so enlarged, they were almost touching! Dr. said it made for a narrow throat opening , which in turn enhanced his gag reflex. The snoring was also due to the fact that his adenoids were quite enlarged, and blocking his nostrils at the back of his nose almost completely. So, my boy had a tonsil-adenoidectomy (At 4.5 years old). It ws a fast procedure, and he got to go home later the same day. I literally had a new boy after that! Not only could he eat without gagging, he stopped snoring...and he could breathe better! Something i never knew he had an issue with to begin with! It would'nt hurt to take your son to see an ENT, see what they have to say. Good luck!


answers from Albuquerque on

Hi J.,
My husband says when he was little, he'd gag on white bread. He said it turned into a brick in his mouth, and he couldn't swallow it. His mom quit making him sandwiches with soft breads altogether, I think. There was just no point feeding him something that made him gag.

PS. He can eat any kind of bread now, but still prefers firmer breads like sourdough.



answers from Dayton on

I would take him to see a pediatric gastroenterolgist. Cincinnati Children's has a great GI dept and a feeding team. My son has been in feeding therapy (for a different issue) for almost a year and it has been VERY helpful. Please PM me with any questions and I'll be happy to help!




answers from Fort Wayne on

My son is three and has thrown up since infancy, but always seemed ok afterwards, would continue eating and go on about his day. I watched for similar foods or times of day, but nothing jumped at me, after two years of this I wanted answers. So I kept mentioning to his doc and he even had a blood allergy panel done at one time, which came back neg. We had already had tubes in ears and tonsils and adenoids out. Finally he sent us to a gi doc who did testing and it ended up he has esophagitis. this is a condition where the bodies reaction to an allergy either inhalent or food or a combination of both causes the lining of the esophagus to swell up, which can cause them to throw up. We took him to be tested for his allergies and it turns out he has pretty bad outdoor seasonal allergies and some food sensitivities. He is still a very happy well adjusted guy, but having answers to why he throws up really put my mind at ease. I don't know if this helps you at all or is even the same thing but thought I would stick it up there.

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