Lactase is an enzyme needed for digesting lactose, lactose is found in foods that many children love to eat e:g: milk and dairy products, frozen yogurt and cheeses, etc.
Lactose intolerance occurs when the body does not produce enough lactase to digest the lactose.
The truth is babies, especially premature ones, may have difficulty in producing lactase for a while and this can cause lactose intolerance.
Also, lactose intolerance can occur due to congenital lactase deficiency. This is a very rare disorder in which babies can’t break down the lactose in breast milk or formula. This disorder can be due to genes inherited from parents.
This type of intolerance results in severe diarrhea, and if not fed a lactose-free infant formula, the babies could develop extreme dehydration and weight loss.
Most often, the production of lactase increases as the baby gets older and they may get over their lactose intolerance.
This lactose intolerance in babies may lead to some problems which some new mothers may be ignorant of.
Therefore, it’s important to look out for these signs in babies
Bloated or distended stomach (A bloated stomach may look slightly larger than normal and feel hard to the touch)
Gas after a feed
Excessive colic pain
Cries uncontrollably after feed and has loose stools.
Kindly note that lactose intolerance can occur temporarily in children after a viral infection or it may be seen with conditions that lead to inflammation of the intestines, such as celiac disease
If you suspect that your child finds it difficult to digest lactose, then you should remove all milk products out of your child’s diet for two weeks and observe to see if his or her symptoms improve.
After two weeks, slowly reintroduce the products in small amounts each day to see if symptoms return
Also, visit a pediatrician for tests and medical advice