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August 16, 2019

Does Your Infant Have a Milk Allergy?

Does Your Infant Have a Milk Allergy?

It is true that many allergic conditions can begin in childhood, and continue throughout life, so it is helpful to discover these allergies in your child early on to ensure your child feels more comfortable. In honor of National Breastfeeding Month, Dr. Rosalie Alvarado, a Westmed OBGYN and certified lactation consultant, has tips on how to detect and react to a milk allergy in your infant while breastfeeding, so you can take action as soon as possible.

Milk allergy, also known as allergic proctocolitis or milk soy protein allergy, is an allergy to cow’s milk protein and other food proteins, found exclusively in breastmilk. The allergy commonly presents itself within the first 6 months into breastfeeding, and it can present in the following ways:

      • Baby will produce loose, mucousy stool. There is also a chance of spots or streaks of blood in the stool.
      • Baby shows visible pain when pooping and experiences gas.

There will be normalcy, as well. Physical characteristics, like weight gain and growth, will stay on a healthy track.

If you suspect your child may have a milk allergy, you should see a pediatrician as soon as possible. Typically treatment for such an allergy is as follows: 

It’s all about elimination.

      • Mothers should eliminate all sources of cow’s milk for a minimum of 2 weeks.
      • Improvement should be seen in 2-3 days, but if not, consider eliminating soy.
      • If there is still no improvement, consider other possible allergens, such as egg or corn. 

If there is still no success…

      • Consider referral to a pediatric gastroenterologist and/or a pediatric allergist.
      • Consider switching to hypoallergenic or elemental formula.

Ensuring the health and safety of your infant is a priority at Westmed. If you have concerns about your infant and breastfeeding, you can make an appointment with a Westmed pediatrician who can help.  Westmed also offers breastfeeding classes for new mothers to support you as you start on your breastfeeding journey.