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Why Is My Baby Spitting Up Clear Liquid?

Why Is My Baby Spitting Up Clear Liquid?

From teething to congestion, there are several reasons why your baby’s spit-up could be clear.

Your baby may be spitting up clear liquid if they’re sick, teething, or overfed. Let’s take a look at why this can happen and when it’s a good idea to talk to your pediatrician.

Common reasons why babies spit up clear liquid

Spitting up, especially after feeding, is very common in infants under one year of age. This experience, also known as reflux, usually involves spitting up a tablespoon or two of breast milk or infant formula. But when that rush of liquid is clear, there could be other things going on, such as the following:


Babies are too little to blow their noses or expel mucus through coughing. So if your baby catches a cold, they may swallow the mucus, which can come back up as clear spit-up.


Your baby’s teeth will start coming in sometime between four and seven months, which can be uncomfortable. To help soothe gum soreness, your little one may drool excessively, which may cause them to spit up clear saliva.


A breastfed or formula-fed baby spitting up clear liquid could simply mean they were overfed—it doesn’t take much to fill their tiny tummy! The milk or formula mixes with digestive juices, making the spit-up look mostly clear.

Is it normal for babies to spit up clear liquid?

In most cases, a little clear or milky spit-up is expected and nothing to be too concerned about. But if your baby is dealing with congestion or teething, it’s a good idea to speak with your healthcare provider, who can guide you on the next steps.

Ask your doctor if Enfamil A.R. could help ease your baby’s spit-up.


When is it time to worry?

While spitting up is typical in babies as their digestive function continues to develop, call your pediatrician if your baby is not gaining weight or is experiencing the following:


Spit-up is characterized by the dripping or drooling of some breast milk or infant formula. But if your baby’s belly contents come out forcefully, that is considered vomiting and could indicate a potential infection, food allergy, or other health concern.

Spit-up that is bright green, yellow, red, or looks like coffee grounds

These could indicate bile, blood, or something other than typical spit-up.

Choking on the spit-up

Normal spit-up comes up easily, but if your little one chokes while spitting up or appears uncomfortable, it could be gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).

Increasing spit-up at six months or older

At six months, babies usually start to sit up, making it easier to hold down food. So if the spit-up is increasing at this time, a doctor’s visit is recommended.

Excessive crying and fussiness

Spit-up accompanied by crying that lasts more than three hours a day could indicate colic.

Stooling issues, gas, wheezing, and rash

Spit-up accompanied by gas, wheezing, a rash, or stooling issues such as diarrhea could indicate cow’s milk protein allergy.

Ask your doctor if Enfamil A.R. could help ease your baby’s spit-up

While spit-up is a normal part of baby development, call your pediatrician if your little one is spitting up profusely or if you have any questions or concerns. If you’re using infant formula, consider asking your doctor about switching to one designed to help ease spit-up issues. Enfamil A.R. formula is specially formulated with added rice starch for a thicker consistency to reduce reflux and spit-up by over 50%* in one week.


Join Enfamil Family Beginnings and earn rewards on infant formulas for spit-up

If your doctor recommends Enfamil A.R. for spit-up, be sure to join Enfamil Family Beginnings to earn rewards on Enfamil purchases and get discounts, free baby formula samples, and baby freebies! You’ll also get custom baby content and tips delivered to your email.

*Based on a clinical study of Enfamil A.R. infant formula before the addition of DHA, ARA, and prebiotics with infants who spit up frequently (5 or more spit-ups per day), comparing frequency and volume of spit-up after feeding Enfamil A.R. to the same babies at the beginning of the study.

All information on Enfamil, including but not limited to information about health, medical conditions, and nutrition, is intended for your general knowledge and is not a substitute for a healthcare professional's medical identification, advice, or management for specific medical conditions. You should seek medical care and consult your doctor or pediatrician for any specific health or nutrition issues. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment, care, or help because of information you have read on Enfamil.