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Many children start displaying symptoms of allergies to cow’s milk  during the first year of life. It is a condition that is hereditary; if a parent suffers from this allergy, there is a greater chance that the child will also. Most children with cow’s milk allergy usually display symptoms from the first year of life until the second. Families with a history of allergy should keep a close eye on their children who might develop this allergy.

Symptoms of Cow’s Milk Allergy

Symptoms vary for every child. Some children start displaying symptoms within the hour after consuming milk, while others within 48 hours. Some children’s symptoms are so mild that they are hardly noticeable to parents.

Symptoms of cow’s milk allergy include:

  • Rash around the face, head, arms, elbows, wrists and body. There might also be swelling in the mouth and infection of the skin.
  • Chronic diarrhea and vomiting after consumption of milk
  • Chronic flu with shortness of breath. The child’s skin might also turn a greenish color. In most cases, parents mistake these symptoms for normal allergies, not an allergy to cow’s milk.

How to take care of your child

  • Breastfeed your child for at least six months after birth. You should also refrain from drinking cow’s milk or using any products made from cow’s milk.
  • Stop your child’s consumption of cow’s milk immediately if he or she starts displaying allergic symptoms. Consult a doctor for treatment.
  • Children who are allergic to cow’s milk might have to drink special milk with smaller protein molecules to lessen allergic reactions.
  • Children with cow’s milk allergy might also be allergic to proteins in other foods; therefore, parents should refrain from feeding the child nuts, eggs, seafood and wheat.
  • Children who are allergic to cow’s milk have an 80% chance of being allergic to goat’s milk, as well. Therefore, goat’s milk should not be used as a substitute for cow’s milk.

Parents can seek consultation at Phuket International Hospital’s Child Clinic.

Photo Credit: mynameisharsha Flickr via Compfight cc