Before having children, I knew there were two options for how to feed your baby; you either breastfed or you gave them formula. Once I had a baby, I learned those two options weren’t as simple as I first imagined. The world became that much more open to all the different types of formulas you can access. Not all baby’s digestive systems are the same and the “one size” fits all mentality for formula does not work. A baby can often need a more gentle formula. Here are 4 sensitive options you need to know about:
Some of us have allergies, and oftentimes we pass that gene down to our little ones. If your baby is presenting extreme fussiness, vomiting, rashes, or eczema, you probably are in constant communication with your pediatrician. You have tried the most gentle detergents, the most natural diapers, even some really thick eczema lotions and nothing seems to do the trick. In this case, talk to your pediatrician about hypoallergenic formulas. Sometimes babies have an allergy to the protein found in milk and need extra help breaking it down. Hypoallergenic formula breaks down the protein into tiny molecules, allowing for the baby to digest and receive the nutrients comfortably. Usually, this alleviates the additional symptoms such as constipation, rashes, eczema, acid reflux, and many other issues.
Acid Reflux Formula
Additionally, there are times where the issue is not necessarily an allergy or potential allergy issue. In some cases, a pediatrician diagnoses a baby with acid reflux, which often shows up as excessive spitting up. When the spit up interferes with a baby’s ability to eat and keeping your baby upright for 30 minutes after eating is not helping, talk to your pediatrician. If the issue is acid reflux, pediatricians usually prescribe medication to allow babies to eat, and sometimes they recommend an anti-reflux baby formula. For example, HiPP AR baby formula is made with organic locust bean gum, which makes it creamier and easier for babies with reflux / spit up.
Another option for formula alternatives is changing the source of the formula altogether. Goat milk has been deemed to be closest to mother’s milk, even closer than cow’s milk! The proteins in the goat milk are slightly different, allowing for the clusters to be smaller and typically reducing spit up and digestive sensitivities.
A simple sensitive or “comfort” formula is great for when there is no medical reason why your baby is extra fussy. Everything your baby is dealing with still falls under the “normal” range and does not require medical diagnosis or treatment in this case. However, you may notice that your baby is still not happy or having trouble. This sensitive formula option is great because it breaks down the milk protein to smaller pieces. Sometimes you will find these formulas have added probiotics and prebiotics as well as more vegetable oils. Make sure you research the comfort formula ingredients to decide which one is best for your baby.
A baby’s first line of defense is always their parents or caregiver. It is our responsibility to keep an eye on symptoms or behaviors that may indicate a change in diet. Doctors often only spend about 15 minutes with our little ones, whereas we spend the majority of their time with them. Know there are options on how to feed your baby in case something just does not seem right. Bringing up these alternative options at your paediatrician visits is a great way to make sure your baby is eating the right food for their bellies.
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