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June 27, 2011

A Real Detective Lesson

I’ve posted recently about lessons we’ve learned while traveling with our little man.  I intend for this blog to be equal parts humorous and helpful, and those more facetious posts were certainly on the humorous side.  Today I have something to share that I hope will be helpful.  Well, I hope none of you fine readers ends up needing this information, but if you need it, here it is.


When we were down the shore (that’s “at the beach” in New Jerseyan), Jacob had two mysterious flare-ups that sent hives up and down his body.  His airways were clear—thank God—but his face wasn’t pretty.  Eventually, we figured out that the culprit was a bag of “baby-friendly” berry-flavored yogurt melts.  With the help of a call to our pediatrician in New York, we managed to get the reaction under control with baths, cortisone, and the all-important children’s Benadryl.


The lesson we learned came when I took Jacob to the doctor for his nine-month check-up the next week.  Thankfully, John had the foresight to take a photo of Jacob’s face when the reaction was in action, and I brought that and the bag of melts to the doctor’s office.  She read every word of the bag and took a good look at the photo before giving me her advice—which was to go to an allergist, and be sure to bring the same things along. There isn’t really a way to tell if the problem is the berries or the dairy, from the evidence we had.  Rather than risking another reaction by testing him on cheese or yogurt at home, we’re going to do more professional testing, and both John and I feel good about it.


Allergies are a tricky thing, and I’ve been told that finding the allergen is often like playing detective:  you just have to pay close attention and record what you observe.  That seemed overwhelming to me the first time I heard it, but I think John and I made some good decisions in the moment, and hopefully we’re one step closer to figuring out what upsets our little man’s system.


While I’m certainly not excited about the distress Jacob’s been through—he just looks so sad when he’s so itchy!—I do feel like we had a parent victory through this experience.  Go, parents!

  1. Rebecca says:

    Ugh! this is my downfall as a mom! I never pay attention to anything that Zoe’s eating nowadays and she eats EVERYTHING! So, when she has a really bad diaper rash we never know which food causes it, and so inevitably end up feeding her the same thing again. I wish I paid more attention, I’m just not that detailed oriented. I mean to remember to pay attention, but I always forget. My poor child. =)

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