Lactose Intolerance Baby: Lactose intolerance in children is diagnosed on the basis of signs and symptoms
Abdominal discomfort, flatulence and bloating due to the consumption of dairy foods usually take place because of lactose intolerance. This has become an increasingly common problem with infants. For this, parents need to have a sensible perspective towards lactose intolerance. Lactose is a form of sugar found in milk and milk products. It is also found in breast milk. In order to digest this sugar, the body produces an enzyme known as lactase. This enzyme breaks down lactose which is then easily absorbed in the bloodstream and becomes an important source of energy in children. However, when lactose is not broken down by lactase, it starts getting accumulating in the intestines. This results in abdominal discomfort, diarrhea, gaseousness and diaper rashes in babies, especially around the anal region. This is known as primary lactose intolerances and takes place in very rare cases. In most cases, secondary lactose intolerance is seen which takes place due to severe gastroenteritis. In this case, the child can show symptoms of lactose intolerance for two to three weeks and then go back to normal.
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Lactose intolerance in children is diagnosed on the basis of signs and symptoms. Only on the basis of bloating and flatulence, parents must not take their kids off milk consumption. This can hamper the growth of kids. If there are a number of signs of lactose intolerant and they prevail for a long period of time, parents should get their kids diagnosed for this condition. Only the kids who are truly lactose intolerant should be taken off the consumption of milk. The rest can survive on breast milk.
The signs and symptoms of lactose intolerance in children manifest after 30-120 minutes of milk consumption. This can happen after the consumption of any form of milk, breast milk, milk-based formulas and cow milk.
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The 5 major signs and symptoms of lactose intolerance in infants are:
1. Loose stools
Sometimes your child might pass loose, watery, yellow and green coloured stools after two hours of consuming milk or any other dairy product. This could be a sign of lactose intolerance in the baby. However, it could also be a sign of other problems. So rule out other possibilities first and then get your child diagnosed for lactose intolerance.
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When your body does not produce enough lactase, lactose remains undigested and starts accumulating in your intestines. This can result in diarrhea. If diarrhea takes place after the consumption of milk and is accompanied by other symptoms as well, get your child diagnosed for lactose intolerance.
3. Vomiting and nausea
If your baby feels sick all the time, is nauseous and vomits a lot, especially after the consumption of dairy, there is a chance that your child is lactose intolerant. Vomiting is usually followed by nausea. It could also take place due to other conditions. But if it happens too often and mostly after the consumption of dairy, you must get your child diagnosed for lactose intolerance.
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4. Bloating and flatulence
The baby may not be able to tell you how he or she feels but you can check for bloating. If the baby's belly is stiff, and the child passes air too frequently, it could be a sign of lactose intolerance. Try pressing the baby's belly gently, if the baby squeals due to this, it could mean that your child is bloated. And if this happens after the consumption of dairy, check with your pediatrician for risk of lactose intolerance.
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5. Frequent crying
Your infant may not be able to tell if he or she is suffering abdominal cramps or not. However, if the baby is prone to crying very frequently after the consumption of dairy, it could mean that the child is experiencing cramps and is in a lot of pain. In this case, get your child diagnosed for lactose intolerance.
Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. NDTV does not claim responsibility for this information.