Any help or feedback I can get from anyone would be much appreciated. I will do my best to be concise.
My son (the youngest of 3) was born in late August 2009 and with physical affections from his older sisters, came down with RSV twice as a baby. He stopped nursing because of it all and was diagnosed with asthma at 4 1/2 mos. old. Initially, it was viral-induced, but now I'm convinced it is also allergy- and exercise-induced.
His pulmonary doc did nothing for him that our pediatrician didn't already have in place. They really pushed the Singulair which we ended up quitting because I just didn't see any benefit -- only the personality-altering side effects. My son is already on so many meds that I am incredibly picky when it comes to adding more. They did the blood test for allergies and found only a slight walnut/peanut allergy. The same test also showed he was allergic to trees. We have yet to visit an allergist (appt. next Monday) and get the skin test because he has steroids coming at him from every direction and he takes antihistamines at night to stop the itching. In order for the test to be accurate, you have to be steroid and antihistamine free. I also know the blood test has a high false positive/false negative ratio, so I am not really banking on any of the info I received from that.
Every time he gets a cold, we start the process. In addition to the Allegra and Benedryl that he takes almost daily (depending on how bad he is itching), the topical steroid for his eczema, and the bathing that we do (to get rid of any allergens clinging to his skin), we start breathing treatments with albuterol. We also give Flovent, and it is without fail that the coughing gets so intense that no treatment helps, so we are left to give oral steroids. He is currently on his 4th round of Prednisone this year, and it's only April. The current allergy season in St. Louis (where we live) is one of the worst on record, and he is definitely suffering more.
I just want him to be comfortable. A friend recently suggested a dairy allergy (even though it doesn't run in our family), and so I am anxious to start exploring that. All of the gluten info I read seems to always involve abdominal discomfort or GI issues. He has none of that. He is a very happy, easy going child. It is just when we have a virus that it gets really bad. I do know that food allergies can play a part in all of this, and while we can't address that because of peak allergy season, I hope to get some answers soon. In the meantime, I want to do everything possible to help him. He is so young that I think it puzzles some of these doctors, and their first response is to medicate. I absolutely hate all the meds that he is on -- hate it. I just feel as if I have no other options for his breathing. Sometimes, we even give 3 back to back albuterol treatments at a time to get his lungs to take more oxygen.
My exhaustion is nothing compared to my sweet son's. His resilience is what keeps me going and saves me from the mind-numbing frustration from trying to figure this all out. I hope someone is still reading because I think people usually glaze over from all of the details. It is just so much. We already do a lot of organic/all natural foods, but we eat a lot of dairy. I also use dye-free detergents. I am going to stop using Aveeno and go the Aquaphor route. If anyone else can make additional suggestions that can emphasize more natural ways instead of medications, I would sincerely appreciate it.
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