Think LO has some kind of dairy allergy - advice please

A is exclusively breastfed, but the one occasion we gave her some formula when she was 8 weeks old she vomited so much we ended up in a&e with her. So we've always thought it a possibility that she might have some sort of allergy but as she is BF, its never really become an issue. 

We've beem doing BLW for a week now and I have been taking a diary of her food intake and keeping an eye on her when giving her anything dairy. She has come up in a rash around her face when eating Philli cheese on toast, and then today I gave her a stick of cheddar and she came up in hives all around her mouth. It didn't seem to bother her, but was most definately there and stayed for a good hour or so and is now just very feint.

What do I do now? Do I take her to the GP? What would they do? Should I stop giving her dairy products? How do I know if its an allergy or intolerance? 

Thanks for any advice :)


  • Definitely sounds like cow's milk allergy. If its an allergy they get the allergic symptoms like hives, swelling, sneezing, sometimes diarrhoea etc. If its lactose intolerance as i understand it its more diarrhoea and tummy cramps but not allergic symptoms like the rash you describe. I would get it diagnosed by the GP and she will probably be advised to be on a dairy free diet. Most kids grow out of it so it might not be forever xx

  • Oh and yes until you have seen your GP i would personally stop anything with cows milk in and just give extra bm x

  • Thanks MM, will book an appointment for the GP next week. If it is cow's milk allergy, will there be things we can use in place of it?

  • Well P is only 5 months so we are just on hydrolysed formula but i guess you can use soya milk? I would check with your GP though as i am not sure if they need to be a certain age first....

  • Keep a diary and log any reactions as well as taking any photos of the hives just to show the GP. You can get Alpro soya 1+ for LOs but it's for 1 year olds and over. O had a diary allergy and I had to use a lot of dairy free products, but it's something he's grown out of now, so it could be the same for A.

  • I meant to reply last night but got sidetracked. It sounds more like an allergy to me (with the immediate violent vomitting). E is intolerant to lactose, and although we get the same symptoms with formula, it's not normally from a nibble of lactose, it builds up.. Though certain things like yogurt / cheese / butter we go get the same symptoms, lots and lots of terrible nappies, red angry rash over chin, and chest, craddle cap gets terrible..

    E is now dairy free, we use a cows milk based but lactose free formula and LF butter / cheese with no issue.

  • I've been keeping a food diary and taking pictures where possible (she's a wriggly thing who is obsessed with trying to get her hands on my phone when it gets close enough to take a pic!), so hopefully that'll help the GP.

    I suppose it'll be the same issue for things with milk in them? I was planning on making her some breakfast pancakes but they have milk and an egg in them... (are eggs counted as dairy??)

  • It certainly sounds like an allergy. I'd be tempted to get a drs appointment, then give her some dairy a few hours before so they can see the exact reaction so you won't be fobbed off. There are plenty of dairy substitutes, but most are soya based and as soya is similar to milk there is a possibility she could also be allergic to soya, so i'd give it a miss until you know what it is you're dealing with. As she's been fine with breast milk, and you've probably been eating dairy, you may find that she's ok with it to a certain extent, so may be able to have it in cooked products, but I guess that'll be a case of trial and error. If it is an allergy, rather than intolerance, piriton may control the symptoms. Eggs are not a dairy product (i'd love to see the egg laid by a cow Lol) but they are a common allergen so some dairy allergy people also have an egg allergy. I hope you get a proper diagnosis soon.  X

  • Sounds like a dairy allergy to me too, my son has a dairy allergy but is finally outgrowing it age 4. See the GP and ask for a referral to paed and dietitian. The main issue is getting enough calories in them so we were advised to use quite high cal foods. There's dairy in a lot of food but equally once you're used to it it's ok to avoid.

    Most bread is fine except milk roll and some hand made type breads, you can cook things like pancakes at home using soya or oat milk, eggs should be fine but people can often have several allergies so she might also be allergic to them. I'd probably get some of the soya toddler milk to use in cooking but keep breastfeeding for her main milk.

  • Lol, i know eggs aren't actual dairy, but thought they fell into the same vein of food groups or something.

    Will maybe cook the pancakes anyway and see what kind of reaction she has

  • Honestly, I wouldn't mess around with it. Allergies often get worse before getting better and unless you have piriton in the house then I just wouldn't risk it.

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