If you have a baby, you may be concerned about him or her having a baby food allergy. While the number of cases of food allergies has exponentially expanded in the past decade, the percentage of children and infants with food allergies is still proportionately low. However, if you or someone in your family has food allergies or your baby has been showing symptoms of a possible baby food allergy, it is important to become educated on the subject of infant food allergies.
Baby Food Allergy Symptoms
Any baby who has a food allergy will experience symptoms of that allergy. Hives, chronic eczema and other food allergy rashes, gas, constipation, diarrhea, and inability to sleep due to excessive irritability are common symptoms among infants. These symptoms are usually not life threatening and most likely point to a mild baby food allergy. However, continuing to give your child the allergen could possibly increase the symptoms and the severity of the reaction in the future.
Excessive swelling, problems or inability to breathe, swelling of the throat, lethargy, excessive tiredness, and even death are other more serious baby food allergy symptoms. If your child experiences any problems with breathing or swelling or even lethargy, call 9-1-1 immediately. You simply do not have time to rush your child to the hospital for help or to call your doctor as these reactions happen so quickly. Immediately seek paramedic help.
Baby Food Allergy Information
Baby food allergies are not very common, but when they do occur almost all of them are caused by eight main foods. Chicken eggs, wheat, peanuts, tree nuts (such as walnuts, brazil nuts, and cashews), soy, milk, fish, and shellfish (such as shrimp, lobster, and crabs). If you are allergic to any of these foods, the best idea is to delay giving them to your child until he or she is at least two years old. Many allergies in children are caused by introducing the allergen too soon to a child. A child should not have peanut butter until he or she is at least one, which is a general guideline and much later if the parents or other siblings are allergic. Baby food allergies can be caused by early introduction of the food, so it only makes sense to delay introduction as long as possible.
If you are worried that your child has a baby food allergy that is exhibiting mild reactions, talk to your doctor about getting your child tested. For severe reactions, call 9-1-1 immediately.