Does your little one suffer from eczema or allergies? Allergies in infants and children are common; in fact, allergy-related disorders are among the leading diagnoses of chronic diseases in children. According to one study, 4 to 6 percent of children have food allergies. For children with eczema, allergy testing is a key way to determine both environmental and dietary triggers. And while, any medical test for a child can be scary, knowing what to expect can lessen appointment-day anxiety.
Our daughter Emory is 13 months old and suffers from eczema. Lately we’ve noticed some food allergy symptoms (severe itching and rash) and decided to see and Allergy Specialist for help. Our pediatrician referred us to Figueroa Salvador MD of Southwest Asthma & Allergy Associates. Who advised that we administer a “Scratch Test.”
ALLERGY TESTING | SCRATCH TESTING
A scratch test is a form of allergy testing where possible allergens are applied to a scratched area of skin. Typically, when performed on a small child, the allergen application occurs on the back. We are working to get to the root of Em’s eczema triggers and decided to test a mix of 12 inhalants and foods.
Prior to Emory’s appointment I scoured the internet for videos and blog posts that offered a detailed description of what to expect. Though they aided in calming my nerves a bit, I was still uncertain how Emory would react to the pricks.
The procedure began by identifying what specific allergens we wanted to test for, cleaning and numbering Emory’s back. The numbers represented the following 12 allergens that we decided to test for:
Once the test is complete and details recorded a topical hydrocortisone cream is applied to the back after it has been cleaned and numbers removed. After Emory was calm and given a “comfort snack” (she did very well) we awaited our consultation. Although the allergens have to sit for 15 minutes, we noticed a few reactions immediately.
Here, we received some very interesting results.
The allergy testing identified wheat, eggs, dairy and peanuts as triggers. With peanuts being the largest reaction of the 12.
Here’s what’s interesting about theses results. Emory has NEVER HAD ANY OF THESE ITEMS. She’s been exclusively breastfed most of her life. We JUST started introducing food (organic fruits & vegetables) to her two months ago!
This means she’s getting these items through my breast milk. I’ve read many articles that state only 1% of what mom eats comes through the breastmilk, but apparently that small percentage is triggering Emory’s allergies and leading to her eczema flareups.
What does this mean?
OUTCOME | NEXT STEPS
One of my main goals before having a child was to breastfeed as long as my child was interested. Due to this, I will be modifying my diet in a major way. As an professed dessert junkie and Mexican food addict, I can tell you that the removal of wheat, dairy (mainly cheese) and eggs from my diet is going to be hard!!! I refuse to rapidly wean her or stop breastfeeding cold turkey as some mom’s (and dumb ass dads) have suggested. I will take this transition one day at a time. With the support of my family, I am certain to get past this phase while ensuring my little is “itch free.”
I’ve found some items and saved some recipes that will hopefully help me on this journey. Though, this will be challenging, as a mom, I plan to do whatever it takes to ensure my child’s needs are put first.
I’d love to hear from you. Please be a part of my village and drop me a comment. Do you have a child that suffers from eczema or food allergies? What are some recipes, brands and/or restaurants that specialize in wheat, dairy, egg and nut free offerings?
If you suspect that your child has an allergy, finding its cause can put your son or daughter on the path to better health.