Vitamin D3 For Baby

Give your baby a head start by giving them 5 micrograms of vitamin D3 as a supplement every day from birth to 12 months if they are: breastfed, taking less than 300mls or 10 fluid oz (ounces) of infant formula a day, or are not getting any sun exposure.

Your baby only needs 5 micrograms of vitamin D3 as a supplement every day from birth to 12 months if they are: either breastfed or taking less than 300mls or 10 fluid oz of infant formula a day.

Give your breastfeeding baby 5 micrograms of vitamin D3 every day from birth to 12 months to help them develop strong bones and teeth. Our convenient drops are easy to use and make it much more affordable than buying individual supplements

Breastfed babies are at risk of low levels of vitamin D in their diet. They also need more vitamin D compared to formula fed babies, as breast milk alone does not provide enough for them. Giving your baby a daily supplement of 20 micrograms (mcg) from birth up to 12 months can help them get all the vitamin D they need.

Vitamin D3 Drops for Baby Uses

Give your baby 5 micrograms of vitamin D3 as a supplement every day from birth to 12 months if they are:

  • breastfed
  • taking less than 300mls or 10 fluid oz (ounces) of infant formula a day

All babies who are being breastfed should continue to get a vitamin D supplement after birth, even if you took vitamin D during pregnancy or while breastfeeding.

You do not need to give your baby a vitamin D supplement if they are fed more than 300mls or 10 fluid oz (ounces) of infant formula a day. This is because there has been an increase in the amount of vitamin D added to infant formula. This is due to a change in EU law as of February 2020.

There are many suitable infant vitamin D3 supplements available to buy in Ireland. Use a supplement that contains vitamin D only.

Why babies need vitamin D

Vitamin D helps us to build and maintain strong bones and teeth.

Our bodies can make vitamin D from the sun. But babies cannot safely get the vitamin D they need from the sun.

Your baby needs vitamin D because:

  • their skin is very sensitive to the sun and should not be in direct sunlight
  • their food (breastmilk or solid foods) may not have enough vitamin D in it
  • between 0 to 12 months babies grow very quickly and have a greater need for vitamin D to form strong bones

Research shows that vitamin D plays an important role in helping the immune system. It may help prevent diabetes, heart disease, rheumatoid arthritis, MS (multiple sclerosis) and some forms of cancer.

African, Afro-Caribbean, Middle-Eastern or Indian parents are more likely to have babies with low levels of vitamin D.

Risks of low vitamin D levels

In severe cases, low-levels of vitamin D can cause rickets or osteomalacia in children.

Rickets is a condition that leads to soft bones. It can cause severe bone deformities such as bowed legs and spine curves.

Rickets in adults is known as osteomalacia or soft bones. This can cause frequent bone fractures, muscle weakness and bone pain.

Buying vitamin D3 supplements

You can buy vitamin D3 supplements for babies in pharmacies and some supermarkets. It is important that you buy supplements that are suitable for babies, and contain vitamin D3 only.

Important

It is important that you buy supplements that are suitable for babies, and contain vitamin D3 only.

You don’t need a prescription to buy vitamin D. The cost will vary depending on the supplement.

Vitamin D supplements for babies and children are not available on the medical card or any other government drug scheme.

Ask your pharmacist how many doses you will get from a supplement and how long it will last once open.

Depending on the supplement, you may need to buy more than one bottle in the year.

Giving your baby vitamin D

Check the label on your vitamin D3 supplement for the number of drops or amount of liquid you need to give your baby.

Read the instructions each time. You may need to give your baby the supplement in a different way with each new brand.

Give your baby the correct dose directly into their mouth.

One dose: 5 micrograms

The correct amount is 5 micrograms. The number of drops can vary, depending on the supplement you are using. If the dose is correct, there are no risks to babies.

Only give your baby one dose per day. Very large doses of vitamin D3 may make your baby ill.

Important

Ask your pharmacist, GP or public health nurse if you’re not sure what to do.

Vitamin D for children aged 1 to 4

Your child will need to take a vitamin D supplement after their first birthday. They should take it between Halloween (October 31st) and St Patrick’s Day (March 17th).

Read about vitamin D supplements for children aged 1 to 4 years

Other vitamins

If your baby was premature or is getting on-going medical care, they might need extra vitamins or a higher dose of vitamin D3.

If your baby is taking other vitamins, ask your pharmacist, GP or public health nurse for advice.

I Forgot to Give My Baby Vitamin D Drops

It depends on whether you breastfeed your baby or how much vitamin D-fortified formula or cow’s milk your baby is drinking.

Consider these guidelines from the American Academy of Pediatrics for vitamin D for babies:

  • Breastfed or partially breastfed babies need 400 international units (IU) of liquid vitamin D a day — starting soon after birth. Babies should continue to receive this amount of vitamin D until weaned or until they drink 32 ounces (about 1 liter) a day of vitamin D-fortified formula or, after age 12 months, whole milk.
  • Babies getting less than 32 ounces (about 1 liter) a day of vitamin D-fortified formula need 400 IU of liquid vitamin D a day — starting in the first few days after birth. Babies should continue receiving the vitamin D supplement until they drink at least 32 ounces (about 1 liter) of vitamin D-fortified formula a day.

When giving your baby liquid vitamin D, make sure not to give more than the recommended amount. Read the instructions that come with the supplement and use only the dropper that’s provided.

While breast milk is the best source of nutrients for babies, it likely won’t provide enough vitamin D. Babies need vitamin D to absorb calcium and phosphorus.

Too little vitamin D can cause rickets, a softening and weakening of bones. Since sun exposure — an important source of vitamin D — isn’t recommended for babies, supplements are the best way to prevent vitamin D deficiency.

As your baby gets older and you add solid foods to your baby’s diet, you can help meet the daily vitamin D requirement by providing foods that contain vitamin D — such as salmon, egg yolks and fortified foods.

If you have questions about your baby’s need for vitamin D supplements, talk to your baby’s health care provider.

Vitamin D (ergocalciferol-D2, cholecalciferol-D3, alfacalcidol) is a fat-soluble vitamin that helps your body absorb calcium and phosphorus. Having the right amount of vitamin Dcalcium, and phosphorus is important for building and keeping strong bones. Vitamin D is used to treat and prevent bone disorders (such as ricketsosteomalacia). Vitamin D is made by the body when skin is exposed to sunlight. Sunscreen, protective clothing, limited exposure to sunlight, dark skin, and age may prevent getting enough vitamin D from the sun.Vitamin D with calcium is used to treat or prevent bone loss (osteoporosis). Vitamin D is also used with other medications to treat low levels of calcium or phosphate caused by certain disorders (such as hypoparathyroidism, pseudohypoparathyroidism, familial hypophosphatemia). It may be used in kidney disease to keep calcium levels normal and allow normal bone growth. Vitamin D drops (or other supplements) are given to breast-fed infants because breast milk usually has low levels of vitamin D.

How to use Baby Vitamin D3

Take vitamin D by mouth as directed. Vitamin D is best absorbed when taken after a meal but may be taken with or without food. Alfacalcidol is usually taken with food. Follow all directions on the product package. If you have any questions, ask your doctor or pharmacist.

If your doctor has prescribed this medication, take as directed by your doctor. Your dosage is based on your medical condition, amount of sun exposure, diet, age, and response to treatment.

If you are using the liquid form of this medication, carefully measure the dose using a special measuring device/spoon. Do not use a household spoon because you may not get the correct dose.

If you are taking the chewable tablet or wafers, chew the medication thoroughly before swallowing. Do not swallow whole wafers.

If you are taking the rapidly-dissolving tablets, dry your hands before handling the medication. Place each dose on the tongue, allow it to dissolve completely, and then swallow it with saliva or water. You do not need to take this medication with water.

Certain medications (bile acid sequestrants such as cholestyramine/colestipolmineral oilorlistat) can decrease the absorption of vitamin D. Take your doses of these medications as far as possible from your doses of vitamin D (at least 2 hours apart, longer if possible). It may be easiest to take vitamin D at bedtime if you are also taking these other medications. Ask your doctor or pharmacist how long you should wait between doses and for help finding a dosing schedule that will work with all your medications.

Take this medication regularly to get the most benefit from it. To help you remember, take it at the same time each day if you are taking it once a day. If you are taking this medication only once a week, remember to take it on the same day each week. It may help to mark your calendar with a reminder.

If your doctor has recommended that you follow a special diet (such as a diet high in calcium), it is very important to follow the diet to get the most benefit from this medication and to prevent serious side effects. Do not take other supplements/vitamins unless ordered by your doctor.

If you think you may have a serious medical problem, get medical help right away.

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