How Long Does It Take For Lactose Intolerance Symptoms To Appear?

Overview of Lactose Intolerance

People suffering from lactose intolerance fail to digest the sugar component known as lactose present in the milk. This causes bloating, gas, diarrhea and any other similar problem after an individual intakes any dairy product. A few doctors refer the health condition as malabsorption of lactose, which is often harmless but leads to some of the uncomfortable symptoms.

Lactose intolerance usually takes place with growing age in humans, as with increasing in age, small intestines fail to produce lactase enzyme in adequate amounts and hence, the lactase deficiency results in lactose intolerance. Most of the individuals digest dairy products without dealing with any uncomfortable feelings even they have lactase deficiency of low levels. On the other side, in some of the cases, lactase deficiency results in lactose intolerant condition after individuals have any diary food.

How Long Does It Take For Lactose Intolerance Symptoms To Appear?

How Long Does It Take For Lactose Intolerance Symptoms To Appear?

Indeed, the question that strikes in our mind is that when a person develops symptoms related to lactose intolerance. For this, doctors have thrown light on following key facts-

Symptoms During Adult or Teen Years

Lactose intolerance problems commonly run in family members and the symptoms of the problem often develop during the adult or teen years. A large number of individuals with this problem may have some daily products or glass of milk without any problem. However, whenever symptoms develop, it may develop from within 30 minutes to up to 2 hours of you consume any dairy product or have a glass of milk and it may be anything, which include-

Symptoms or Problem With Age

In some of the cases, people who never had any problem with curd, ice cream or any other milk product suddenly fall sick because of lactose intolerance. This case is common in old age people.

Temporary or Permanent Symptoms/Problem

In some of the cases, small intestine of a person fails to prepare lactase because of any short-term illness, like stomach flu or as any lifelong disease, like cystic fibrosis.

Alternatively, after surgery because of the removal of a specific part of a small intestine, small intestines stop preparing lactase. These problems may be of temporary or permanent.

Rare Lactose Intolerance Issues in Newborns

Newborn babies suffer from lactose intolerance problems rarely. However, if any newborn baby is lactose intolerant, it cannot drink or eat anything containing lactose. A few of the premature babies deal with lactose intolerance on a temporary basis, as their bodies unable to prepare lactase. However, once a baby’s small intestine starts making lactase, the condition resolves automatically.

Detecting Lactose Intolerance

Next, question that comes in our mind is that how we should confirm that we suffer from lactose intolerance. For this, experts suggested the best way of identifying the problem is to avoid every type of dairy products and the milk to observe whether the symptoms go away or not. Once the symptoms go away, you have to add limited amounts of dairy products in your diet to check whether symptoms relapse or not. This is because; when you fall sick for one time after having a glass of milk or any other dairy product, you may not suffer from lactose intolerance. However, in case you are falling sick each time after you take ice cream, milk, curd or any other similar item you may suffer from lactose intolerance.


Symptoms may appear in case of lactose intolerance or the occurrence of lactose intolerance depends on various situations and it may of temporary or permanent. However, if you think that you are suffering from lactose intolerance, you should discuss with your doctor within time.

Also Read:

Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:August 29, 2018

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