Most Common Food Allergies in Babies

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All about Foods Allergies in Babies below 12 Months

Food allergy in babies is common. Earlier it was believed that the babies with still developing immune system are not prone to allergies but later this misconception was cleared. Anything like rashes, hard skin, spitting after his meal, scary red eyes, sneezes or sniffles is an allergy in babies.

When and How Allergic Reactions are caused in Babies?

A baby and young children’s immune system is still not developed and hence it considers some protein in few foods as a threat to the body and fights severely with it which causes allergic reactions. A baby can be allergic to a specific foods or a selection of foods and every time that food is given to him, reactions may occur.

Common Allergy-Causing Foods in Babies

• Milk
• Egg
• Wheat
• Shrimp
• Nuts or peanuts
• Soy

Body Parts Where the Reactions Take Place

Respiratory System

Problems related to breathing like fast or noisy breathing, sneezing, runny nose, stuffy nose, whizzing or coughing.

Skin

Infants with a sensitive skin are more prone to skin allergies. Some common skin allergies include swollen or itchy lips, swollen face, red bumps or rashes, thickened skin or skin dryness, swelling of mouth or tongue.

Cardiovascular System

Fainting or light head. Some other reactions that occur in the gastrointestinal system are diarrhoea, vomiting, nausea and pain in belly.

How to Treat Food Allergies in Babies?

Treating an allergy in a baby can be difficult. It’s better not introducing any specific food to your baby which is related to your family history of a food allergy.
When you take your child to the doctor when he experiences a specific food allergy, he creates a plan to treat the allergy. The plan usually targets to remove all the foods from the child’s diet that contains the specific allergen.
Parents can also check for the common allergens in the food by seeing its label. For common allergies, there are medicines available to reduce the symptoms but the allergies can’t be treated completely. In severe cases, doctors may think of Antihistamines or epinephrine auto-injector.

Can I Introduce the Allergenic Foods to My Baby Later?

Babies below 6 months are at a high risk of getting affected by the allergenic foods. A baby should only be breastfed till 6 months and after this period, they will be at a lower risk of reactions. Studies say that introducing the common food allergens like milk, eggs, nuts, soy etc. should not be delayed to 2nd year as it increases the risk of allergic reactions.
The 3-day-rule is very effective in this process.
Your baby’s paediatrician is the best person top suggest when and how to introduce these top food allergens to your baby. However, you can try the below-mentioned tips before introducing these allergens to the little one after consulting the paediatrician.

How and When to Introduce Common Allergy Causing Foods to Child

Eggs

egg yolk
Unlike the older studies which suggested that before 2 years, it is unsafe to introduce eggs to the babies, the new studies say that once your baby turns 12 months old or the age suggested by his paediatrician, he can be introduced egg yolk before egg white. If there is no family history of egg allergy, you may introduce egg at age 8months.

Milk

milk

Dairy

Till 6 months, only breast milk is recommended (and continued breastfeeding till 24 months age) for the small babies or they can be given formula milk. Before that no animal milk should be introduced. Soy Milks is also one of top allergens

Shellfish

eating uncooked prawns
Fish or shellfish is not something to introduce to the baby in the initial phase. These can be given later (after 12-15 months) if they are well cooked.

Peanuts

Try to follow the 3-days-rule and introduce peanut in the form of peanut butter. Stop it if you observe any reaction. Its safe to introduce after 12 months if mom/father is not allergic to peanuts.

Wheat

whole wheat
Wheat is healthy for all ages. These should only be cut down in the diet if there is any family history of wheat allergy. Oats are the best alternative for wheat if the baby has an allergy to it or there is a family history of allergy.

Soy

soya beans dry
There are chances that if a baby is allergic to cow’s milk, he will be allergic to soy too and many foods contain soy as well. Tofu, Soy milk are to be avoided for kids below 12 months.
Introducing the above allergens to your baby can be a little tricky but it’s only for health precaution. The 3-day-rule is the best solution to avoid the health risks. If the symptoms of the allergies are mild, cut down the food from baby’s diet and try to introduce it later and if the symptoms are severe, immediately consult your baby’s paediatrician. Some food additives include some of the food allergens. If possible, try to avoid the foods containing too much of food additives.

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Sapana

Software professional - now work at home mom

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