Ped wants me to give my son Vitamin D

Briana - posted on 09/08/2010 ( 90 moms have responded )

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I went to my pediatrician today. Everything seems fine and he's healthy. A little low on his weight but nothing to be concerned about yet.

However, when she asked if I was breastfeeding, she immediately wrote me a prescription for Vitamin D for my son. I don't get it. She didn't bother to even check to see if he was deficient. I can gaurantee if she had, he'd come up just fine!! I spend at least 30-60 minutes in the sun every single day, take my prenatals still, eat healthy, AND my son spends at least 10-20 minutes in the sun every other day. I walked out without the prescription.

Has this happened to anyone else? I understand if he's deficient, but to not even check is absurd to me! I feel it's kind of like me going in and saying "I don't feel good" to my doctor and she just writes me a prescription for whatever without checking me out.

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Marissa - posted on 09/12/2010

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My child is 11 months, and I still breast-feed. However, my son's pediatrician recommended giving him TriViSol for supplementation of Vitamins A, C and D. Vitamin D doesn't come through in breast milk, and there's really no way of telling if the Vitamin D absorbed in sunlight is sufficient for a child without other supplementation. The doctor's been to medical school, he's got a PhD, and he makes recommendations based on experience, and knowledge gained from studying research on the subject.

Adelina - posted on 09/21/2010

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I think it is pretty standard procedure for the pediatrician to suggest vitamin D supplements for all children now, breastfeeding or not.

Katie - posted on 09/19/2010

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I am in Europe, and the Peds here prescribe and endorse Vit D supplements for all babies. (Regardless of BF or not.) I guess Vit D can be tricky to absorb and it is vital for brain growth....if the baby doesn't need it, it will just run through their system and be discarded. Why take the chance that your baby's brain isn't getting enough of something it needs? Especially since it is so easy and that first year brain growth is so vital.

Colleen - posted on 09/16/2010

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I live in Oregon and the sun just isn't strong enough here to get enough absorbed through the skin, so I do and have been giving my son TriViSol since he was like 6 weeks old...he loves it and sometimes actually asks for more..hahaha. I just have to comment though on those of you who "know" your child isn't deficient...how do you know this when they haven't been tested? AND...since when are vitamins a medication? I'm just sayin'.

Francesca - posted on 09/15/2010

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Depending on where you live, even with sunlight, its sometimes not enough. Where I am from they estimate that 40% of adults don't get enough.

My daughter has been on Vitamin d since she was born. I even take one too.

Its not a prescription. Really. And there is a clear correlation with Vitamin D and health. I have Multiple Scerlosis and its linked to lack of Vitamin D. So, I didn't even question it when I was after delivery to start the drops. This is a good thing. But if you don't feel okay with it, don't do it.

And its not because doctor's assume us mom's are deficient. Its because that is one of the vitamins that don't pass through through milk.

But different doctor's have different recommendations for different areas. I mean, I am up in Canada where our winter's are long and sunlight, even during the day is indirect or blocked by overcast.

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April - posted on 10/04/2010

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First, if you do give him vitamin d, you can get it over the counter, and I am sure it would be drastically cheaper. Second, the reason pediatricians are doing this is because if you or your baby wear sunscreen, you don't absorb the vitD. Because of the push for sunscreen and the increased use of it most bf babies are deficient. That said, I don't give it to my daughter, because it is NASTY and I can't get the dose (small as it is) down her.

Ioana - posted on 09/29/2010

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we spoke with 2 different peds and both told us to give him Vit D drops, that will help him absorb and fixate the calcium he needs. I give him 2-4 drops each evening, directly into his mouth. he doesn't have any problem taking the drops. I don't want to expose him too much directly on the sun, unprotected, although we are going for a walk each day for at least 1 hour. I don't know anyway how much sun is enough, so Vit D supplement seems like a good idea.

Kassie - posted on 09/25/2010

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The American Academy of Pediatrics has a great article on Vitamin D deficiency in the US and other western countries in general, because their old recommendation for Vitamin D is too low for EVERYONE. Here's the link: http://aappolicy.aappublications.org/cgi...

The reason she just wrote the prescription when she found out you are breastfeeding is because none of the Vitamin D you ingest or make from being in the sun gets to the baby through your milk. Breastmilk is fantastic, I just recently weaned my almost two-year-old, but I gave him a Vitamin D supplement when the pediatrician recommended it because the lactation nurse who runs the new mommies group at my hospital also recommended it.

The article also points out that getting enough sun exposure to get the recommended 400IU of Vitamin D from sun exposure can increase your risk of skin cancer. There is little risk in this country of getting an overdose of Vitamin D from food, so you really need a supplement to safely get enough Vitamin D.

Our son tolerated poly-vi-sol well until recently, so now I just give him 1/2 of a Flintstones Complete since he's almost 2. He loves it. And I know he's getting enough D.

Melissa - posted on 09/24/2010

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It does not matter if YOU take a vitamin - the vitamin D does not pass well through breast milk (iron doesn't either, for the record). Like another post said, the exposure to the sun must be completely unprotected in order for the vitamin d to be absorbed. If you have doubts, try getting a second opinion. I was given the advice to give Vitamin D by three different pediatricians and two separate lactation consultants (my son was a preemie so we saw a lot of specialists).

Jessie - posted on 09/23/2010

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my doctor has never even suggested vitamins for my breastfed son. he is 14 months old and has never been very big, always in the bottom 10% on their charts. currently he is 21.5 pounds (as of last week). I wouldn't worry about it

Cocheiska - posted on 09/23/2010

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Same thing here too... and now, almost a year and half later, I kinda wish I hadnt just reacted to my stupid Ped. He was dumb, and a bad doctor... when I asked if it was necessary and why, because other moms I had been talking with and things I had been reading didnt really make it seem necessary, he said "Oh, so where did YOU get YOUR medical degree?" and never addressed my question except for the basically say "because I said so". It pissed me off so badly that we switched doctors and I refused to give my baby girl vitamin D. Now, hindsight being 20/20, I probably should have given her the supplement. Studies show that giving it cant hurt (like at all!) but IF they are deficient bad things can happen, so why not?

Kathleen - posted on 09/23/2010

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I go to a more "holistic"-minded ped and she recommended it as well. After I left I was thinking the same thing you were and reminded myself to ask why it was necessary next time. We get our Vit D from a health food store in liquid form so we just mix a drop into his food.

Kristin - posted on 09/22/2010

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We live in a time of increased UV radiation, sun block/screen, covering up and whatnot. Minimal D is tranferred through breastmilk from what you consume. The reason it is called the sunshine vitamin is because our bodies convert vitamin A into D, but we are so protected now versus 100 years ago. Rickets are not a laughing matter, but if you are getting that much unprotected sun, you are fine. Go with your gut. I live in Washington so I should probably give it daily. However, it's only when I remember. Good luck.

[deleted account]

It depends on where you live. In the area I'm in rickets is common in babies who don't get enough vitamin D. Because it's a water soluble vitamin any excess will leave the body through urine. If you live in places that receives a lot of sun all year taking vitamin D isn't as important. I did give vitamin D especially since my daughter was born in the late fall.

It's a precautionary measure and it wont hurt them to get it.

Stevie - posted on 09/22/2010

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I thought it was odd too I mean if breastmilk doesn't have much vitamin D in it I would think that is because babies don't need that much of it because nature doesn't make mistakes but it's just a vitamin supplement not drugs so I figure it can't hurt I give my son 1 ml of d'vi'sol every morning. Maybe you could ask your doctor why they recommend it before totally writing it off :)

Sally - posted on 09/22/2010

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They push Vit D here too And with my first daughter, they pushed iron even after her finger stick came back fine. I did the research and don't bother giving my girls either. The AAP gives them a list of things that babies 'need' and most pediatricians don't have time to double check it themselves.

Erin - posted on 09/22/2010

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Breastfeeding has 200 million years of evolution behind it. If you're healthy and eating well you do not need to give your nursing child a supplement.

Kimberley - posted on 09/22/2010

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I give my daughter Bio-D-Mulsion everyday, a drop on her tongue, and she does great.

Sofia - posted on 09/21/2010

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i read a post about a mother losing custody of her 5 week old daughter due to low vitamin D causing some kind of sickness which caused the baby to fracture easily. The mother brought her baby to the hospital and the hospital turned the baby over to DCS (formerly DSS) and since the mother had no (provable) explanation, they assumed domestic abuse. So i don't know if your specific baby needs it, but i would be careful and give her a little bit. good luck

Brooke - posted on 09/21/2010

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Oh, and to top it all... The vitamin ss supplement has a " paraben" additive (endocrine disrupter).... Like I'm going
to give that to my baby everyday... Would do much more harm than good.

Brooke - posted on 09/21/2010

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Yes... Our ped did too... Totally ridiculas. It's just bc we are breastfeeding... An overkill precaution for rickets. We didn't take it either.

Jen - posted on 09/21/2010

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My ped told me that some women just don't produce enough in breastmilk so if he is solely breastfed after 4 months it is good to do it just in case as testing the actually breastmilk is apparently very expensive.

Ali - posted on 09/21/2010

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same thing happened to me at 1m appt and then at 2m appt they asked if I had started giving drops, I said yes but I haven't. I figure if they aren't going to check for deficient I wasn't going to worry. I just don't have the energy to get into it. 3 child, and first time I've been asked about it

Micky - posted on 09/21/2010

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Vitamin D also helps you avoid auto-immune diseases... Which run in my family. Diabetes, psoriasis and coeliac disease are things that vit d can help you avoid.

Micky - posted on 09/21/2010

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Breast milk doesn't have vitamin d and you need it to efficiently absorb calcium. Every breastfed baby needs vitamin d. It's a bone density issue. Sometimes the sun isn't enough, especially if they're wearing sunscreen. They taught us this in our wanna-be lamaze class. I've never had a problem after I've given it to my baby. There's a brand called Baby D Drops that has no taste or smell and one drop holds the daily requirements of vitamin d. They say you can put a drop on a soother or on your nipple and as long as they're on it for thirty seconds they get it. It works for me.

Stacey - posted on 09/21/2010

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I give my little girl the vitamin D and although she doesn't like it, if I feed it to her and then breastfeed her, she does very well. I tasted it myself and it has a pretty bad aftertaste. Usually having the baby eat right afterwards may help with this!

Lauren - posted on 09/21/2010

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I give my son TriViSol, for the Vitamin D. He actually loves it and it can stop the tears at times because he likes the taste. As I understand it, he will pass any vitamins that he doesn't need and it can't hurt him.

Gretchen - posted on 09/20/2010

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I have given my son Vit. D since he was 2 months, because the ped said to the first visit and I thought it was silly since my sister's son's ped never said it was necessary but, when I told my husband that ped had recommended it, I was told by him that I needed to listen to her. She said what others have posted, that Vit. D doesn't pass through human milk but is suplemented in formula. It is more tedious than anything to remember to give it to him. I did switch to the multi vitamin just because the store was out of the D and let me just say, YUCK! It stinks and he HATES it! I have been mixing it with some of his pureed foods so that it is easier to give.
I don't really see any harm in giving it to him.

RACHAEL - posted on 09/18/2010

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The medical community has been finding that many babies, children and especially adults are Vitamin D deficient. This is not the case for everyone, but it is so prevalent that practitioners are on a high alert for it and are trying to be proactive and err on the side of being sure that everyone is getting enough of it. Vitamin D is essential for so many different processes in the human body, the list is nearly endless. Research is also finding a link to Vitamin D deficiency and increasing risk factors for certain cancers. Vitamin D deficiency is also being linked to infertility.
I, too, live in Hawaii (as one other mother stated), and have little need for the oral dose; however, my Family Practitioner did prescribe the oral vitamin with Vitamin D and getting out into the sun for 10-15 minutes/day without sunscreen based on the fact that Vitamin D is found only in trace amounts in breast milk (I BF for 15+ mos). There is a lot of good and bad literature out there on giving your babies Vitamin D supplements, but to err on the side of caution because of the mounting research surrounding Vitamin D deficiencies, I'd take the Rx from the doctor, especially if you are in a sun-deprived location/wear a lot of sunscreen and are BF.
--but let me be the first to say, I didn't adhere to giving supplements every day as prescribed, and still don't. We get outside just about every day and most foods and juices are fortified with Vitamin D. I think the moral of it is to be aware that there are more complications to Vitamin D deficiencies than Rickets, and to keep a mental note as to the nutrients your child is getting enough of everyday/week.

Andi - posted on 09/17/2010

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There is so much controversy on this subject, but here are the facts presented in the last several lactation courses in my state. It is NOT our milk that is deficient, but rather us moms. Our climate has changed, and unless we live in certain areas of the world we are no longer getting the needed amounts from the sun. Rather than supplimenting these babies with multivitamins that they do not need, we need to be supplimenting the mom. Kill two birds with one stone so to speak. Have your levels checked, and if you are low, then you can begin taking a vit. D supplement which WILL pass through your breastmilk in the amounts that your baby needs.

Krystal - posted on 09/17/2010

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I did give the supplements to my son but he was born in December so it was to cold to have him in the sun. I take my vitamins regularly and try to eat right but since we didn't get out much I felt that he needed it.

Tiffany - posted on 09/17/2010

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It's just nonsense, and bad practice. This pediatrician is obviously not *truly* a supporter of breastfeeding, and I would be looking for another doc... Likely you will run into stupid conflicts like this in other areas, too.

Annah - posted on 09/17/2010

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Vitamin D isnt actually a vitamin. Its a hormone. I didnt want to give it to my baby either until I did some research. I know take 6000 UI daily even though the daily recommended amount is only 200-400 which research will tell you isnt nearly enough. Hopefully baby is getting some of that through breastmilk. He is 17mos so I also give him one gummy vitamin which has 200 UI . There is research that indicates VD deficiency is linked to cervical cancer, MS, rickets, and many many other things, including common colds. Breastmilk is supposed to be "perfect" but we are not, neither is our environment.

Lisa - posted on 09/16/2010

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I'm surprised she gave you a prescription. Tri-vi-Sol is an over-the-counter Vitamin D supplement. I've given it to my son daily since he was about 3 months old. He loves the taste (the poly-vi-sol tastes awful, but the tri is yummy I guess!).

The fact is, most BF babies ARE deficient. I'd rather give my son the drops than have him get too much unprotected sun exposure. 15 minutes doesn't sound like a long time, but long term that can honestly do skin damage, especially on my fair-skinned child. I personally go by the belief that my doctor went to med school. I didn't. Although I don't want to be ignorant, I tend to trust that he knows more about this kind of thing than I do.

Tenille - posted on 09/16/2010

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our ped also recommended extra vit d for my children, especially during the winter months when we don't get outside as much. she also said that there are newer studies that show if a breastfeeding mom takes larger doses of vit d, that it will pass along better into the milk. she did say that it may not be totally necessary to supplement in the summer. i am taking 4000 units per day. there are a lot of recommendations to increase vit d intake now, so i don't see any harm in taking the extra amount. this way you don't have to worry about giving the meds to your baby. our ped was a lactaction consultant also and very passionate about breastfeeding so i trust her advice.

Charity - posted on 09/16/2010

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I was given a script for it when my son was 3d old, I used it for ~ 1 week, and once he choked taking it, I threw it in the trash, I now take extra D myself so my son will get it via breast milk if he needs it. I told my Dr, and he said that it was up to me, but AAP reccomends it for BF babes.

[deleted account]

I'm glad it's not just me that this irks. My daughter's Pedi knows better than to try this on me hehe! We've already laid the ground rules on junk like that. I hear it's common place. It's so sad too. Mother's make exactly the milk their child needs. Too many vitamins today are made from chemicals and not food derived. Our bodies don't know how to process them and we end up just pottying them out. What's worse is most mainstream vitamins can cause cell mutations and end up giving us cancer. Stick to your guns mamas! You know instinctively what's best for your baby and what's best for you.

Kendra - posted on 09/16/2010

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I use Baby D Drops - one drop on my nipple once per day is all she needs. I live in northern Canada, and we don't have a ton of sun in the winter and fall... and it's cold already! I buy the drops OTC from the drug store... my ped told me it was necessary. Also... my younger brother has MS and there is a proven link to vit D deficiency and MS... just so you know.

Hillary - posted on 09/16/2010

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I breastfed my 3 children. My pediatrician recommended Vit D drops, too. I never gave it to any of my children. I live in Philadelphia which is pretty sunny and the weather is generally mild. I had my children outside everyday that it wasn't raining. My theory is that breast milk is the perfect food and humans were made this way so supplements are not needed. My first pediatrician tried to tell me my baby needed iron drops, too because breast milk doesn't provide enough iron. That is absolutely incorrect and I am appalled that a pediatrician wouldn't be educated on this subject. Current research shows that most people don't get enough Vit D. Probably because they are not outdoors as much as they should be. Vit D has been found to help combat many potential health problems and large amounts are beneficial for the body. It wouldn't hurt to give any baby additional Vit D. But I do feel that frequent trips outdoors in the sunshine probably works just as well.

Jo - posted on 09/15/2010

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I live in new zealand and i've never been told to give my son vit d. he is almost 7 months and was excusively bf for 6 months. he was jaundiced when he was born and i was told to let him have a naked sunbathe (inside, through the window) for a few minutes each day. he quickly came right. i'm surprised it's recommended in the US and not too common over here. maybe our giant hole in the ozone layer lets enough sunlight through? lol

Esther - posted on 09/15/2010

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they did testing all ababies need viatmin d if they are breastfeeding or formula feeding our breat milk does not give them vitamin d and when they turn 4 months they should get vitmamin d and floride drops. i give my daughter it with her cearel in the morning. this way she wont spit it out. but until she could have cereal i agve it to her in the bath. the stuff stains. i wish my mom would have given it to me when i was a baby i have lots of problems with my bones and teeth.

Dawn - posted on 09/15/2010

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BUTTER, BUTTER, BUTTER. Screw the script. Your doc is not paying attn to you, I would consider finding a new one, but if you are worried about your babe (the age isn't listed here) put butter on everything. oatmeal, spaghetti, rice, eggs, bread. Its a fantastic natural fat for babies. Their little brains use every bit of it.

Gabriela - posted on 09/15/2010

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I was also told to give my baby Vitamin D because I breastfed. I didn't think she needed it. She was never checked if she was deficient. Doctors just seem to assume breastfeeding moms are deficient and so their children must be also. I personally don't believe in taking vitamins if you eat a balanced diet. The only time I have ever taken vitamins was when I was pregnant.

Corina - posted on 09/15/2010

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I live in CA, and my ped. said that as long she is going outside everyday for 15 minutes she is fine. If i want to be sure she getting enough to give her the supplement vit d. I did not give it to my son and he was fine.

Pauline - posted on 09/15/2010

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I take my son to both a Naturapathic Doctor and Pediatrician. Even with breastfeeding my child I was tired of my son & me getting sick all the time. My ND recommended Vitamin D (1000 IU) along with a probiotic. When my son was 18 month I asked my pediatrician if my son should be on a multi-vitamin. He said a multi-vitamin was not necessary at this time. However, since I am breastfeeding and not giving him cow's milk at this time and cheese, yogurt doesn't provide much source of Vitamin D, he did recommend a Vitamin D supplement. Fortunately, my ND was already ahead of this. There is a lot of research coming out about Vitamin D deficiency (increase risk for MS, cancer, etc.). As a society we are not always getting the sun exposure we need which can also be dependent on where you live. Most MDs may recommend 400IU of Vitamin D. I don't believe your physician is over-reacting.

[deleted account]

I give all three of my children vit d from fall till spring due to the lack of sunlight touches them due to being all bundled up from the cold. I give the Baby D Drops'' which you just put one drop on the nipple before nursing and after 30 seconds they get there 400iu the d-vi-sol was 1ml for the 400iu and all of my 1st 2 kids would spit it up or get fussy afterward I believe it is because they add artificial colour and flavour and my first is allergic to food colouring. It seems ridiculous that medicine for a newborn would have the need for flavour and colour added to it!

Allie - posted on 09/14/2010

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They want you to give your child vitamin D because it is essential for brain development. However, if you go out in the sun with him just for a little bit every day that is also sufficient. If you live somewhere the sun doesn't come out a lot in the winter, it would be good to get a supplement. I personally am not too big on supplements myself...really more into the natural way of life, but i live in Portland and in the winter there is not a lot of sun, so I will have to give a small supplement too....BOO.

Sarah - posted on 09/14/2010

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Vitamine d is not just ecential but the most ecential vitamine out there for it helps our bodies absorb other key nutriants and also lack of it can cause alot of problems when you or your child get older (teeth decay, rickets and even ostioperosis). without vitamine d your body cant breakdown minerals or absorb vit's and they won't test an infant because it isn't detectable untill the damage is done.

Janae - posted on 09/14/2010

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Same thing happened to me. As long as you're taking him outside, he's fine! I never gave my son vitamin D after my doctor told me my breastmilk wasn't sufficient. I did take him outside at least 3-5x/wk. He's 16 months now and thriving. My opinion is it's unnecessary if you're taking him outside and that it's a blanket "remedy" for anyone and everyone. You know your son much better than your doctor.

Heather - posted on 09/14/2010

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My second child is two months old and we are giving her vit D. Our ped is great and does not push things that she doesn't feel are really important. We live in Minnesota and do not get the sun light other people get. She also told us that vit D does not get passed through the breast milk.

Marsha - posted on 09/14/2010

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Doctors are told that there are people who are Vit D deficient. So give everyone Vit D, just to make sure. To me it sounds like you don't need the vit D, as you are aware that it is something you need. My doctor asked me too, and I was not worried at all, because I know that we get enough. Don't forget too, that your body stores it up for the winter months!

Daphne - posted on 09/14/2010

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The AAP recently recommended that all breastfed babies be given a vitamin D supplement because of a study that showed an increase in rickets in US breastfed babies. However, the study sample was small, the babies that developed rickets were all African American (the darker your skin, the more difficult it is for your body to produce vitamin d from the sun) and had almost no sun exposure. It is entirely up to you if you give your baby a supplement or not. Your baby is born with enough vitamin d to last the first 6 months of life. You can give your baby foods that are rich in and enriched with vitamin d after that, so we chose sun exposure and vitamin d rich foods.

Sara - posted on 09/14/2010

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i have been giving my little girl the d-vi-sol drops ever since she was born, she made faces at first but she loves it now, it is recommended that every breast fed baby take them but just like everything else it is up to you what you do as a parent as long as the baby is not sick and absolutly needs it im sure it is not harming him so i say its up to you whether he takes it or not

Melissa - posted on 09/14/2010

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Vitamin D isn't a true vitamin per se. Its actually a hormone. Your body can generate it, but typically in insufficient quantities. Sunshine does help your body produce it, but not typically enough of it is produced and we supplement ourselves when we eat fish or eggs and drink pasturized milk or eat margarine and other foods that are enriched in it. Formula fed babies recieve supplements from the formula they drink. Breastfed babies need to be supplemented.

Vitamin D regulates calcuim and phosphorous levels in the bloodstream which in turn, promotes the mineralization and growth of healthy bone. It also prevents rickets.

A great way to supplement your breastfed baby is a product called Baby D Drops. Its a single drop of liquid you can either put on your breast, a soother or straight into their mouth. It has no colour or taste to it. Its easier than D-Vi-Sol or other products out there.

If you ever are questioning something your doctor is prescribing, ask! I've learned that you need to be in charge of you and your children's health and expect nothing less. Politely demand answers and if you aren't getting any, find another doctor. Its the only way to make sure you're getting the best health care out there :)

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