Millions of families all over the world use formula without any issues whatsoever. It provides a vital service, keeping their precious little ones fed and happy and helping them grow and develop. But for some families, using formula can turn into a health scare for their babies. Some babies have formula allergies, so knowing the signs is so important. What does a formula allergy look like? Here’s what you need to know.

The tricky thing about formula allergies is that they don’t always present the same way. Some can present in the form of physical symptoms like a rash, while other symptoms can mimic colic or gas. So what does a formula allergy look like?

Formula allergy symptoms can appear in the first few weeks to two months after beginning formula. It will look and present differently depending on the severity of the casein sensitivity or allergy. Casein in the milk protein that is usually the cause of a milk allergy. In babies with a milder sensitivity, formula may cause stomach cramps, crying, or spit up after feedings. Some babies may develop a rash on their face or body that resembles eczema. It may start as small red bumps around their mouth, face, and forehead.

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Other symptoms of a formula allergy include unusual watery or hard stools, an red ring around the rectum that doesn’t go away with diaper cream, or frequent spit-up.

Babies with severe formula allergies may exhibit other symptoms.

Uncontrollable crying for hours at a time, severe diarrhea, bloody stools, a failure to thrive, and wheezing may be signs of a severe formula allergy. If your baby exhibits any of these, call your doctor right away.

The good news is, once a formula allergy is identified, switching formula can put an end to the discomfort your baby is experiencing. For babies with a mild sensitivity, switching to a sensitive formula usually does the trick. For more severe allergies, you may need to switch to a hypoallergenic formula.

So what does a formula allergy look like? It will be different in every baby! But if your baby drinks formula and exhibits any of the symptoms listed here, it’s definitely a good idea to give your pediatrician a call.

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