Most of the infants are allergic to the proteins of cow milk.
The infant allergy to milk is very common.
The infants those have milk allergy are approximately 2-3% and they outgrow it typically.
Infant allergy due to milk:
The milk allergy in infants occurs due to the mistake of the immune system that identifies the milk protein as danger and fight against it. Allergic reactions makes the infant irritable and fussy.
Infant allergy to milk is more in case of formula fed infants than the breast fed infants. The researchers cannot understand the reasons for this infant allergy and they believed that it is genetic.
The symptoms of milk allergy to cowâ€™s protein appear in few months of your childâ€™s life. The symptoms can appear after feeding very quickly (rapid onset) or after consuming the cowâ€™s milk for 7 to 10 days. This is very common.
The symptoms include: Refusing food, loose stools (possibly containing blood), skin rashes, vomiting, colic or irritability and gagging.
These symptoms cannot be diagnosed as they occur with other health conditions. This can outgrow by 2 years in most of the children.
The symptoms of rapid onset reactions that come suddenly include:
- Other itchy bumps on the skin
- Bloody diarrhea and
A severe allergic reaction called the anaphylaxis occurs in rear cases and affects the breathing of the baby, babyâ€™s skin, blood pressure and stomach. It is common to other food allergies than the milk allergy.
Diagnosis to milk allergy in infants is done, if you suspect your baby is allergic to the milk. When you consult the doctor, he can ask you for food intolerance or family history with this allergy. He will then perform the physical examination.
In order to rule out this health problem, your doctor might order for several lab tests as there is no single lab test for this allergy to diagnose.
The doctor can ask for skin allergy test in addition to the blood test and stool test. He will insert small amount of milk protein with a needle under the babyâ€™s skin surface. If a red spot, called the wheel emerge, then your baby can be allergic to the milk protein.
The doctor can advise for oral challenge test. The doctor collects the milk consumed by your infant after feeding is stopped by you. Then for few hours he will wait to check for the allergic reactions. To reconfirm the diagnosis, this test is repeated by the doctor.
In case of formula fed infant, treatment is done by soy protein-based formula. If this is not tolerated by your infant, then you can switch to the hypoallergenic formula. This will trigger the allergic reactions by breaking the proteins into particles.
The hypoallergenic formula is available in two major types:
Cowâ€™s milk proteins are present in extensively hydrolyzed formulas. These proteins break down into small pieces so that they are less allergenic than whole proteins in regular formulas. The infants allergic to milk can tolerate to this formula.
Amino acid based formula contains the simple protein. This can be introduced to your infants in case the hydrolyzed formula does not improve the condition of baby.
Identify the infant allergy to milk to take proper care of your infant.