A child with a milk allergy has an unusual response to milk and other products containing milk. The child may also have the same reaction when consuming sheep, goats or buffalo milk. The child may also be allergic to soy if they have a milk allergy however, this is rare. Milk allergies are the most common food allergy in children.
There are two proteins in cow’s milk that cause most allergic reactions. The first one is Casein, which is found in the curd of the milk. The second is whey, it is found in the liquid part of the milk. The child may be allergic to one or both of these proteins.
The child may show signs and symptoms of a milk allergy minutes to hours after consuming milk products. Some of the symptoms may include vomiting, wheezing, hives and digestive problems such as, diarrhea, abdominal cramps and colic in babies.. They may also experience coughing, runny nose, watery eyes and an itchy rash, usually around the mouth. The symptoms can range from mild to severe, but, rarely does the child have a severe, life-threatening reaction.
Most children outgrow a milk allergy by the age of three. The primary treatment for this allergy is to have the child avoid consuming milk and milk products. There are medications, such as antihistamines, that can be given to the child if they happen to consume milk products and begin to have an allergic response. There is no sure way to prevent a food allergy. Reading food labels is one way that the parent can avoid an allergic reaction.
Milk products can be labeled on foods as whey, casein, lactose, lactate and hydrosolate. It is also found in things such as artificial butter flavor and artificial cheese flavors. Even foods that are labeled as milk-free or nondairy may still contain milk proteins. This is why it important to know how milk proteins are listed on food labels. It is also necessary to ask how food is prepared when eating out at a restaurant. Even though the food may not contain milk or milk products, it may be prepared with things such as butter or other ingredients.