How Do You Know if Your Baby Is Allergic to Peanuts?
It is estimated that up to 3 million infants have food allergies. However, babies cannot communicate a stomach ache or a scratchy throat. If your baby seems unwell after eating, the cause may be food allergies – but how do you know for sure?
According to Opposing Views, new parents should watch for symptoms that arise immediately after feeding their baby, because this could indicate a food allergy or intolerance. Opposing Views recommends introducing foods to babies very slowly, limiting new foods to one at a time. They remind new parents that most pediatricians say infants should be introduced to very few solid foods until they reach 6 months old.
Popular baby foods, such as graham crackers and similar snacks, may contain peanuts. If you've given your baby or toddler a snack like this, and your child develops a rash or hive, ask your pediatrician if it could mean a nut allergy. Most pediatricians will want to see your baby right away, while the rash is still present, especially if it is severe.
After eating foods containing peanuts, babies with an allergy may also develop diarrhea or vomiting. However, both of these symptoms can also be caused by viruses and other health issues. If these are the only symptoms you notice your child exhibiting, it is difficult to tie them to allergies. However, if your child develops these symptoms only after eating a certain food, the pattern makes food allergies a more likely culprit, says Opposing Views.
There are other, more severe symptoms that immediately point to an allergic reactions. A baby with food allergies may develop respiratory problems, such as difficulty breathing and gasping for air. If this occurs, immediate medical intervention must be sought. According to Opposing Views, all parents should be aware that an allergic reaction like this is possible whenever their baby is introduced to new foods, particularly given the growing number of children in the U.S. with food allergies.