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Dairy intolerance in babies - GP support for intolerance in Costa del Sol

GP support for intolerance in Costa del Sol

An average of about 40 per cent of adults in central Europe is estimated to be dairy intolerant. But more rarely, babies can have it as well. Here’s what you need to know about dairy intolerance in babies, how an intolerance affects breastfeeding and formula feeding and when to call our GP support for intolerance in Costa del Sol.


Is my baby dairy intolerant?

The symptoms of lactose intolerance may resemble those of other conditions, making it difficult to identify. However, common symptoms include:

  •  Stomach pain
  •  Diarrhoea
  •  Bloated stomach
  •  Excessive wind

These symptoms usually occur within 1–3 hours after the lactose containing food has been consumed.


Signs of stomach pain might include:

  • clenching their fists
  • arching their backs
  • kicking or lifting their legs
  • crying while passing gas

How does a lactose intolerance affect breastfeeding and formula feeding?

If you breastfeed your baby may need drops of lactase to digest the lactose in your breast milk. The enzyme drops are usually mixed in a sterile container with a small amount of expressed breast milk, and then given to the baby from a spoon just before a feed. Because it is produced by the breasts, eliminating lactose from your own diet will not help, and is not related to the amount of lactose in your diet either.

If your infant suffers from a deficiency of developmental lactase due to premature birth, this condition only lasts a few weeks or months and your baby may eventually drink milk-based formula or breast milk with no problem. However, in the meantime you will have to use lactose-free infant formula.

If you are feeding your baby with formula, you’ll need to shift to a lactose-free infant formula.

The lactose allergy does not impact their growth as long as the disease is handled and the baby is watched. Identifying it early helps your baby to feel healthy again and to get the nutrition that they need for this point and for all potential development. And note that in most cases the aversion can last just 4–6 weeks, so it's best to speak to your health care provider regarding reintroducing lactose



When to call our GP support for intolerance in Costa del Sol

Call our GP support for intolerance in Costa del Sol immediately if you think your baby is having digestive trouble. Our GP may refer you to a paediatric dietician for more expert care.

If you suspect lactose intolerance, it may be advisable to remove lactose from your baby's diet. Only under the guidance of a health care professional should you do this, who will provide advice to ensure that your baby still receives all the nutrients they need for healthy development. One nutrient that needs special attention is calcium, a mineral that usually comes from lactose-contacting foods and that can affect normal bone development.

If you are breastfeeding and think your baby may be reacting to the lactose in your breast milk you should speak to our GP support for intolerance in Costa del Sol for advice.