Saturday, August 27, 2011

Where I Talk About Poop and Bugs

Thank you for such a disturbing pic
So one of the less-than-exciting things that happened after BlogHer was that the doctor proclaimed my child to be severely allergic to dust mites. Do you know what dust mites look like? See disturbing picture----->

Did you know that they are in everyone's house and feed on the dead skin cells that you slough into your bed when you sleep? I mean, probably the most disgusting thing I've ever heard in my entire life.

But so the doctor tried to tell me that these disgusting little skin eaters are what is causing my kiddos terrible stomach issues...

But let me rewind.

When Drew was 9 months old and he weaned, he started having explosive poops. (I know, this is exactly the post you want to be reading over your cheerios right now, but bear with me.) We initially thought it was a bug, hydrated the hell out of him, put him on soy formula (never doing that again) and tried to get his tummy back on track. Except it never seemed to go back to "normal". I mean, here we have a kid who is stuffing himself stupid on bananas, apples, bread, rice, every single constipating food in the universe, only to have body explosions once every few days. They tested him for giardia, had us put him on probiotics (which actually made it worse) and basically told us to wait it out.

Um yeah, he's almost two and we are STILL dealing with the issue. So before I left for BlogHer I decided that enough was enough. I mean, I'm still cloth diapering him for god's sake and OMG how many of those can I change??? So we took him in for a blood test, which btw, was probably the most traumatizing thing that has happened to me since the day we circumcised him.

That's right people, I was there for that too. How did I win that mommy lottery?

I digress. 

Anyway, they drew his blood and told us they were sending it out for a million and one tests for allergies, celiac disease, and whatnot. I was happy that we had finally started on an aggressive track to figuring out what this mess was and the doctor in the meantime had us take him gluten free (that's a whole other post) to see how it he would react.

So yeah, I was down in San Diego drinking learning to be a better blogger when the call came in that my child was severely allergic to dust mites and that's what was causing his tummy issues.

Really? Honestly, I wasn't really convinced that was the culprit and I'm still not. I thought it was just allergy symptoms and eczema, which he did have a light case of until I started with Dust Mite Armageddon 2011.

So we came home and in the midst of the 55 pounds of swag, 85 loads of laundry and a house that looked like a bomb went off, I stressed out about how to attack the dust mite issue. I vacuumed, I did tons of laundry, I took the bumper off his crib (which has turned out to be a curse as my child keeps getting his feet stuck in the slats) and bought $75 worth of dust mite spray and carpet treatment. His eczema went away, but his tummy problems? Not even close.

The gluten free thing seemed to help until he got a hold of some crackers at playgroup one day, and a piece of breaded chicken another. His stomach went back to haywire and a week and a half later, I still can't get it under control.

I guess my question for you, oh all-knowing internet is, have you EVER heard of dust mites doing this? And if so, how do I get rid of them? The doc suggested ripping out all of our carpets, which had us laughing because we just put them in... so, no, sorry doc.

If it is the gluten thing, how long does it take for it to get out of the system? I mean, a week and a half seems a little excessive right for a one-time exposure to some bunny crackers, right?

And has anyone EVER had this problem with their kiddos?

I'm freaking out... My mommy instinct tells me that something's wrong and I'm getting eye rolls from a lot of people who say that it will resolve itself eventually and I need to stop being so sensitive about it if it doesn't bother him that much.

No chance. My baby doesn't feel well and I don't, for once, know how to fix it.

What would you guys do and how do you react when your "Mommy instinct" kicks in?


Suzanne said...

I have never heard of dust mites causing intestinal issues, but we are also a generally allergy-free family and none of us have ever been tested so it totally COULD be a thing. But I have to say the gluten thing sounds much more likely. You noticed the problem right after a dietary change and removing gluten seemed to help (temporarily) so trying it for another few weeks can't possibly hurt.

Did the doctor have any other suggestions (besides the carpet because AHAHAHA OMG NO) for controlling dust mites? I thought they were something that was in EVERYONE'S house and you couldn't really exterminate. Because that is the least helpful advice ever.

Anonymous said...

I don't have any advice or relevant experience (lots of sympathy, though - this sounds horrible!) but I do have a friend who found out as an adult that the "dairy allergy" she thought she had all of her life was actually an allergy to dust. If you'd like to talk to her, I can put you in touch with her by email. I don't know any of the details, but I think she and other members of her family have a few different allergies, so she might have some ideas for you based on their experience.

Sarah P (I emailed you recently about travelling with a baby)

KVH said...

My mom is highly allergic to dust mites but she doesn't have the same symptoms as Drew. She is always breaking out in huge welts not unless she takes her prescription allergy medicine.

An Irish Italian Blessing said...

Ok, no I've never heard of dust mites doing that. I can't believe you're still cloth diapering (HOLY POOP) AND, my 2 year old drops major bombs, like 3 poops (nasty poops) a day, and she doesn't have a dust mite allergy, sigh. Hope you get it under control for little man :)

J said...

The dust mite thing does seem like a stretch but most dust mite exposure comes from mattresses and pillows. I could explain but it's totally gross. Anyway, you can get dust mite proof covers for your mattresses and pillows from Bed Bath and Beyond or even Target! Good luck-you are right to trust mama instinct, keep trying!

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