What do the guidelines say?

Infant feeding issues are very common, especially during the first few months of life.1 National guidelines are available to support their appropriate diagnosis and management,2-4 as well as for the management of cow's milk protein allergy (CMPA) in primary care.5 These guidelines are key to reducing the impact on infant and family, and the burden on healthcare services.

  1. Iacono G, et al. Gastrointestinal symptoms in infancy: a population-based prospective study. Dig Liver Dis 2005; 37(6):432-438.
  2. National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE). Gastro-oesophageal reflux disease in children and young people: diagnosis and management. 2015. Available at Accessed September 2017.
  3. National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE). Constipation in children and young people: diagnosis and management 2010. Available at Accessed September 2017.
  4. National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE). Clinical Knowledge Summaries: Colic-infantile. Available at Accessed September 2017.
  5. Venter C, et al. Clin Transl Allergy 2013: Available at:, Accessed September 2017

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The World Health Organisation (WHO) has recommended that pregnant women and new mothers be informed on the benefits and superiority of breastfeeding - in particular the fact that it provides the best nutrition and protection from illness for babies. Mothers should be given guidance on the preparation for, and maintenance of, lactation, with special emphasis on the importance of a well-balanced diet both during pregnancy and after delivery. Unnecessary introduction of partial bottle-feeding or other foods and drinks should be discouraged since it will have a negative effect on breastfeeding. Similarly, mothers should be warned of the difficulty of reversing a decision not to breastfeed. Before advising a mother to use an infant formula. she should be advised of the social and financial implications of her decision: for example. if a baby is exclusively bottle-fed more than one can (400 g) per week will be needed so the family circumstances and costs should be kept in mind. Mothers should be reminded that breast milk is not only the best. but also the most economical food for babies. If a decision to use an infant formula is taken. it is important to give instructions on correct preparation methods, emphasising that unboiled water. unsterilised bottles or incorrect dilution can all lead to illness.