Tag Archives: Advocate

Jerry the Bear

Found this pretty cool so I had to share and smile on…

 

It’s Not Easy When You’re a Kid with Diabetes or Food Allergies – Here’s Something That Helps – A Lot

Source: http://www.upworthy.com/

TEDDY BEAR

Tbt – The Early Signs of Food Allergies

Months ago I first posted some of this as my first “Throw Back Thursday.” However, it was before I had many followers and I wanted to add more to this topic

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To start, in our case, predicting food allergies during the first few weeks or even months was really impossible.  First of all, because I myself never had a food allergy, I never considered the thought that I may have a high-risk baby.   I now know that a baby is considered high-risk for food allergies if at least one parent or sibling has allergies.   TJ has no siblings yet; however, a dad who is allergic to fillet fish and walnuts. While I did know about these allergies before TJ’s anaphylactic reaction to yogurt, I did not know that my husband was also allergic to eggs as a baby and child, and suffered with horrible eczema until the age of 8.   In fact, his eczema was so bad as a baby that he had to be held 24/7 to prevent him from scratching and getting staph infections.  Maybe that is why he also did not sleep through the night until he was 3.  Not to mention, he was allergic to regular diapers and needed to use cloth ones. So yes, my son and any other children I may have one day are all considered high-risk.


 

Check out this article: Prevention of Allergies & Asthma in Children


Secondly, I do believe that TJ was born with these allergies and that is was nothing that I did or did not eat while pregnant or breastfeeding that caused it.   While TJ was born with eczema, I was told by doctors that it was common in babies and that he would probably outgrow by the age of 1.  I have read studies that show that symptoms, incidents, and the severity of eczema are all often reduced in babies who are exclusively breastfed during the first months of life.    I breastfed TJ exclusively for 13.5 months; however, his eczema and skin reactions were not an issue until October 2014 when he was five months old.  Coincidentally, that was also the month when I introduced solids.   Knowing what I know now, I would have and would wait until six months of age to introduce solids for any of my children.  His body just wasn’t ready. It was and is just too pure for the foods we eat these days.


With that being said, I do believe that he had some signs of food allergies early on, but the tricky part was that they are symptoms common among most babies.

  1. SPIT UP: While TJ never projectile vomited (minus the one time he had the stomach bug), he did spit up A LOT!  In fact, we both needed to have wardrobe changes throughout many days.  However, because he always gained weight nicely, this spit up was never an issue to doctors. So we did not worry.  Heck, there were so many other aspects with a young baby to worry about.
  2. ECZEMA: Looking back, TJ’s eczema did tend to flare up after nursing.  It was never a horrible flare up that seemed to cause him discomfort.  However, certain areas would become slightly red and irritated.  It wasn’t until he was five months that this eczema started to cause him discomfort, sometimes even resulting in hives and red rashes.
  3. LOOSE STOOL:  At a breastfeeding group meeting, I remember a mom discussing her daughter’s stool and everyone having a conversation about poop.  I had never spoken about poop so much in my life as I did during those first few months.   Anyways, I did not even think twice about it when TJ continued to have loose poop.   Many of the other babies started to have different kinds of stool when they started solids.  Instead, introducing food to TJ’s diet did not bring any change for him.  Instead, he always had loose stool that also called for many wardrobe changes.  However, there was no blood in it so once again no one thought that food allergies were to blame.

Looking back, I do believe that these three symptoms were signs of food allergies.  Although they were not to the extreme level or to any level that caused anyone including doctors to worry, they were present in a modified version due to breastfeeding. Or at least, this is my theory about them. (Remember I am no doctor and these are just my personal views and experiences.   Refer to my disclaimer on my “About Us” page.)


Additional Resources Regarding Early Signs of Food Allergies

1) Possible Signs of a Food Allergy

Source: http://kellymom.com/


2)Food Allergy Reactions

Source: https://www.healthychildren.org/English/Pages/default.aspx


3) Babies With Food Allergies

Source: http://www.parents.com/


4) Food Allergies – Food Allergies While Breastfeeding

Source: http://www.askdrsears.com/


5) Infant Allergies & Food Sensitivities

Source: https://www.healthychildren.org/English/Pages/default.aspx


From now on, I would (and would recommend others wearing similar shoes) request for allergy testing to be done before introducing high-risk foods or any solids to a high-risk baby’s diet. While I brought TJ to an allergist before introducing any food because of his eczema, there would be more of a conversation and plan the next time around. Regardless of what should have or could have happened, we smile on together in trying to educate others about this wild world of food allergies…

tj cartoon

 

 

Stocking Epinephrine

The following article made me really think about how much could and should be changed regarding stock epinephrine.  Just because you were not born with an allergy does not mean you will never develop one.   Therefore, I believe it is critical to have a supply of life-saving epinephrine auto-injectors available in all schools, restaurants, airplanes, ambulances, etc.   In our experience with my son’s anaphylactic reaction, we were lucky.   Since we had no idea about his food allergies, we had no epinephrine with us nor did the ambulance that picked us up that snowy December evening.   Because we know how lucky and blessed we were, we know we need to do more in this area in order to continue to smile on in safety…

“As we have defibrillators on the wall in many public entities, wouldn’t it behoove us to have life saving epinephrine auto-injectors in public places like schools and airplanes?

Read the entire article here and let me know your thoughts: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/lianne-mandelbaum/no-do-overs-with-food-allergies-only-tragic-endings_b_8196658.html

Source: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/parents/

How to stay safe with food allergies on the rise

Teal Pumpkins – More Than Just a Color

Food Allergy Research & Education (FARE) developed  The Teal Pumpkin Project

“…to help us create a safer, happier Halloween for all! Launched as a national campaign by Food Allergy Research & Education (FARE) in 2014, the Teal Pumpkin Project™ raises awareness of food allergies and promotes inclusion of all trick-or-treaters throughout the Halloween season.”

Read all about the Teal Pumpkin Project here.

Quoted from (Source): http://www.foodallergy.org/home


While we are beyond thankful for FARE and this entire campaign, teal pumpkins have an even greater meaning for us…

MORE THAN JUST A COLOR

-Written by: http://smilingawayfoodallergies.com/

Together we stand for so much more,

Eternal brothers and sisters as one,

Advocating for ignorance’s cure,

Living in unity has begun.

Pumpkins are orange or are they teal,

Ultimately it’s not about their color but what they reveal.

Moments that open up eyes and hearts,

Pumpkin’s new hue is only where compassion starts.

Kindness for one another no matter if we directly relate

Inner empathy inspires a greater fate,

No allergies or many- for once – we all can share the same plate.

Project deeper than who has an allergy and who does not,

Reality is bringing hope to what humanity has really got.

Optional participation but yet so many chose to learn,

Joyfully adding to Halloween’s allergy-free concern,

Everlasting gratitude for all who act without expecting return.

Celebrating a community coming together as one,

Teal pumpkins are just the start of a unity I pray has only just begun.


Our teal pumpkin and treats (still in the works...)

Our teal pumpkin and treats (still in the works…)

Even though my son is still too young to fully participate in Halloween, I am beyond thankful to everyone who plans to participate in the Teal Pumpkin Project.   With so much negative news in the world today, times and campaigns like these bring hope for a society whose foundation can be built upon more compassion than we know.   With that being said, we wear teal proud and smile on to one great Halloween …

tj cartoon

Ways to Help a Child with Food Allergies From Feeling Left Out

Although we have some time before this stage, I found this to be an excellent read and wanted to share.

9 Ways Parents Can Help a Child with Food Allergies from Feeling Left out at School

Source: http://community.kidswithfoodallergies.org/


Even though it has been a tough four days for my little one who has a stomach bug/viral infection of some sort, we smile on remembering that “today is beautiful”…

“Sometimes the day won’t ever end
Sometimes you just throw up your hands
It’s the little things sometimes

Sometimes the world has just gone dark
Sometimes your praying for a spark
It’s the little things sometimes

But if you lift your eyes
See it in a different light
Just a cloud up in the open sky
Let the rain, fall away
Cause today is beautiful…”

– Lyrics from “Today is Beautiful” – David Dunn

http://www.klove.com/music/artists/david-dunn/songs/today-is-beautiful-lyrics.aspx

tj cartoon