Helping Seniors Live Healthier Lives

5 Common Symptoms Of A Milk Allergy In Young Children

Milk, particularly cow's milk, is a very common allergen for young children. A milk allergy can present a number of symptoms, and it can take some time to determine exactly what is causing an allergic reaction. If your child experiences any of the following symptoms, make an appointment with an allergy specialist:

Stomach Cramps

One of the most common symptoms of a milk allergy in children is stomach cramps. However, stomach cramps associated with a milk allergy can develop hours or even days after consuming milk. If your child complains of stomach problems on a regular basis, it may be due to drinking milk or eating foods that contain milk.


Since a person with a milk allergy will have a reaction after consuming milk, it is not surprising that a symptom of the allergy would be diarrhea. Frequent diarrhea is common in children with an undiagnosed milk allergy. If your child has diarrhea regularly, make sure that you give him or her plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration. 


Just like other common allergens, a person who has a milk allergy can develop hives when milk is consumed. In most cases, hives can be treated with antihistamines. If your child has a severe reaction with large hives that antihistamines do not help, a doctor may prescribe steroids. Reoccurring hives are often a sign of an undiagnosed allergy, so make an appointment with an allergy specialist as soon as you can.


When a person's body can't tolerate milk, vomiting may happen. Vomiting is a reaction that will happen quickly if a child is allergic to milk-- your child may vomit seconds to hours after consuming any type of milk product. There are many medical reasons that a child may experience frequent vomiting, but it is always a good idea to get an allergy test done.

Failure to Thrive

A severe milk allergy may result in a child failing to thrive. Failure to thrive is a condition where a child does not grow taller or put on weight properly. When failure to thrive is caused by a food allergy, vomiting, diarrhea, and other stomach problems can play a role in the lack of growth. If a failure to thrive diagnosis is due to a milk allergy, removing all milk and dairy from a child's diet should help with the issue. Your child's pediatrician and an allergy specialist will work together to treat your child if failure to thrive is caused by a milk allergy.