Saturday, 14 June 2014

Challenging Baby Again!

Day Four! 

The end of Day Four, to be precise!

I'm finally allowing my hopes to rise.

We're challenging Baby again. It's a bit overdue. I'd put it off due to this or that - you're meant to make sure they're completely well, for one thing, but also I was waiting for a time that was convenient. Holiday time certainly wasn't!

A 'challenge' by the way, is the means by which you test whether an allergic person can tolerate the food to which they've been allergic. If you're likely to have an life-threatening anaphylactic reaction, this would have to be carried out in hospital. 

'Baby' has had a Non-Ige allergy. This means her reactions are delayed. Not life-threatening, but real nonetheless. So our challenges - agreed with our dietitian - take place at home.

It wasn't a planned challenge, by any means. We were out. Someone mistakenly gave her a biscuit. They had no idea she was dairy free and for once, she didn't ask. Hence I found her happily munching on a malted milk. 

One of these:

'Cow biscuits' as they're otherwise known!

'Too late!' she uttered gleefully when I asked her about it.

She certainly enjoyed it.

'Oh well!' I thought, 'there's not much I can do about it now. We'll just have to go along with it and see what happens.'

So we did... and nothing happened!

'Oh!' I thought, 'well in that case, let's try another and see what happens.'

There was only one problem - I had no Malted Milk biscuits in the cupboard, so I bought a pack from Poundland. Previous experience (see here) suggested we weren't going to get very far, so I didn't want to spend too much on them - just in case the rest of the packet was going to waste. I made sure I checked to make sure they had milk in them (sometimes cheaper biscuits don't).

So anyway, we tried again... and she was fine with that one too!

No tummy ache, excessive wind, disturbed sleep, sore bum or dodgy poo!

Yesterday she had a rash, on the front of her torso, but it turned out that it was just heat rash. Left to run around without her clothes and with a fan on, it disappeared within an hour or two!

'Baby's' itchy rash

Then she had a tummy ache late afternoon, but she hadn't eaten much lunch, and it soon disappeared once she had eaten a nice cream! 

One thing I have learned with 'Baby' is that sometimes a tummy ache might not necessarily be a sign of a reaction. It could be because she's hungry, constipated, got a tummy bug (she's had a few), or because she's about to produce a poo. So every tummy ache has to be considered in context and sometimes we just have to wait and see what will happen.

If it is milk related, then repeated exposure has meant tummy aches and dodgy poo and so on become more frequent, to the point where they can no longer be ignored. 

But today? Still no signs - nothing!! 

So it's a BIG FAT HUZZAH and Hallelujah!!

Originally we were told 4 or 5 days, with a biccy, but I'm still playing cautious, until after the weekend. Then I upping the anti - we're going to two malted milk biscuits, as per the 'Milk Ladder' 

For those of you not aware of what a 'Milk Ladder' might be, its a programme for reintroducing milk. Starting with baked milk, in biscuit form (baked milk is more easily tolerated than straight milk), it progresses in twelve stages, to the point where you're on the real white stuff - y'know - cow's milk.

Who knows how far we will get up the ladder on this occasion, that's still to be determind, however I was interested to read this article, which states:

 it appears that many children are taking longer to ‘outgrow’ their milk and egg allergy, a period of time that corresponds to the increasing utilization of strict allergen elimination diets for the treatment of children with these allergies. Recent studies indicate that about 80% of young children with milk and egg allergy can tolerate these foods in baked forms, that is, extensively heated proteins that have become denatured, and that the addition of heat-denatured proteins into the diet actually leads to more rapid development of tolerance to all forms of milk and egg

So, now that 'Baby' has started to manage some baked milk is a good sign. Up 'til now this has not been the case.

I have to tell you that now that she is older 'Baby' has become more aware of how she is affected by her allergy to milk - how much she is missing out on. She is ECSTATIC that she can now have Malted Milk biscuits (I don't blame her, I used to love them too). 

Yesterday, she told me she wants a carton of milk for Christmas.

Bless her!

Here's hoping!!

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