In here we talk about Vitamin D deficiency in babies. May be you didn’t know that babies need vitamin D for healthy growth and development.
Yes it exactly helps to build strong, healthy bones and teeth.
Babies must get enough vitamin D because if not they said to have a deficiency. If the levels are low enough, they are at risk of getting rickets, a disease that affects the way bones grow and develop.
These are the ways that vitamin D deficiency in babies.
You must make sure that your baby has enough vitamin D by giving a daily supplement as soon as your baby is born.
Why Babies need vitamin D?
Now you know the vitamin D deficiency in babies. Why they need vitamin D? Because they need vitamin D for bone growth and development.
So do babies developing in the womb. Do you know that Vitamin D helps us absorb calcium?
Actually vitamin D deficiency can cause rickets, delayed motor development, muscle weakness, aches and pains, and fractures.
Make sure that you get enough vitamin D because if women don’t get enough vitamin D during pregnancy, their children might develop neonatal hypocalcemia that affect in not enough calcium in the blood or rickets later in childhood.
How vitamin D related with sunlight?
You must let your child to lay sunlight on their skin for her body to make vitamin D because they gets about 80% of her vitamin D on this way.
Till now any studies didn’t show how much sun need for good levels of vitamin D. But we do know that the amount of sun your child needs depends on the location you live.
Actually it also depends a bit on your skin color. People with naturally very dark skin need 3-6 times more sun to make vitamin D than the amount fair-skinned people need.
Vitamin D deficiency in babies and others
You need to know that babies might be at risk of vitamin D deficiency if they have below points.
- keep all their skin covered.
- spend most of their time indoors and don’t get much or any sun.
- have a condition affecting how the body controls vitamin D levels – for example, liver disease, kidney disease, conditions that cause problems with absorbing food (like coeliac disease or cystic fibrosis), and some medicines can affect vitamin D levels.
- darker skin.
- have been breastfed for a long time and have a mother whose vitamin D is low.
How to get enough vitamin D?
Vitamin D comes from different sources. They are given below.
- Sunlight: This is the natural Vitamin D formed when skin is exposed to sunlight. Actually sunscreen and clothing, which protect babies from the harmful effects of the sun, won’t allow vitamin D to be formed.
- Foods: In some countries vitamin D is added to cow’s milk and margarine during production. Some foods—like salmon, tuna, and liver—are good sources of vitamin D.
- Vitamin supplement: For babies, it comes in liquid form and is given daily with a dropper. It’s important to give your baby a supplement that is meant for babies.
How you recognize if your baby is at risk of vitamin D deficiency?
Babies are most at risk of vitamin D deficiency if they are suffering from given below points.
- They are breastfed.
- Their mothers don’t have enough vitamin D
- They have darker skin.
- They live in northern communities.
All breastfed babies should get a daily supplement of vitamin D.
What are the right amounts of vitamin D should my baby receive?
- Babies who are breastfed should get 400 IU (international units) per day.
- Babies in northern communities (north of 55° latitude, which is about the level of Edmonton) or who have other risk factors (such as dark skin) should get 800 IU per day between October and April, when there is less sunlight.
If you aren’t sure about the right amount to give your baby you must talk to your health care provider in advance.
How to treat vitamin D deficiency?
If so you must talk to your GP if you’re worried about your child’s vitamin D levels, or you’re pregnant and think you might have low vitamin D.
He will order a blood test, which is the best way to check vitamin D levels.
For mild deficiencies, your family doctor might say that your child needs to get a bit more sun.
If you or your child has a severe vitamin D deficiency, you must inform your doctor that you or your child should take vitamin D supplements, as well as getting more sun.
If you live in a location where you can’t get more sun, your doctor exactly say that taking vitamin D supplements is the best thing to do.
You might take a vitamin D supplement in one large, single dose, or you might take a supplement for several weeks or months.