Baby Colic Stop
Baby Colic Relief

When Coping With Formula Feeding Colic

Understanding the Different Types of Formula

With so many types of baby formula on the market, it can be difficult to understand the difference between them, much less understand how they will affect your baby’s delicate digestive system. If you are trying to avoid colic, choosing a formula that is appropriate for your baby’s age and any allergies is an essential first step.

While no website can replace the advice of your child’s pediatrician, here is some general information to help you understand the differences between the types of formulas available for infants. As always, speak with your baby’s pediatrician before you make changes to your baby’s diet, and always get a thorough medical evaluation if you suspect that your baby may suffer from lactose intolerance or milk allergies.

Cow’s Milk Formula – these are by and large the most common type of formula out there. Made from cow’s milk, and fortified with iron, these formulas are what most infants drink. However, made from cow’s milk does not mean the same as the milk you buy for yourself at the store. These formulas are created specifically to mimic the ratio of nutrients found in breast milk, in many instances.

These formulas may also contain specific chemicals that are found in breast milk, and are almost always fortified with iron. If your baby has an allergic reaction to the protein found in cow’s milk, he or she will need a different type of formula.

Soy Formula – in terms of colic, formulas that are soy-based may bring some relief if your child has a sensitivity to cow’s milk, or if your baby is lactose intolerant. Soy formula is also sometimes recommended when babies have diarrhea. In some instances, babies who have trouble digesting cow’s milk may also have trouble digesting soy. Soy milk is generally not recommended for premature babies, as it can cause some problems with calcium absorption in some infants.

Protein Hydrolysate Formula – these formulas have been processed so that the proteins are smaller and more easily digested. Often called “hypoallergenic” or “pre-digested” formula, this is what the doctor may prescribe if your baby has allergies or difficulty digesting regular milk. Because the proteins are smaller, they are more easily digested by babies who may have an allergic reaction to the larger protein configurations in cow’s milk or soy.

Thickened Formula – this type of formula is specifically for babies who have acid reflux. As acid reflex may also be a contributing factor in colic, formula that is thickened with rice flour may be able to help minimize the symptoms. Babies who suffer from acid reflux typically have a modified feeding schedule as well, and can benefit from positioning changes that minimize the chance that milk will be regurgitated after feedings.

There are other types of formula as well, including formula designed specifically for premature infants, and formula that is lactose-free for babies who demonstrate acute lactose intolerance. There are even formulas that are specifically designed for babies with different medical issues that need specialized dietary considerations.

Finding the right formula to minimize or eliminate your baby’s colic can take some time, and if your baby’s colic is not fully caused by digestion problems, you can expect to spend some time adjusting the other issues that contribute to your baby’s fussiness. Be patient, and work with your pediatrician to get the best solution possible.

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