Sunday, January 5, 2014

Food Allergy you say?

It has been asked why I eliminate food dyes from H diet. After lots of reading and research I discovered that most children on the spectrum and with sensory disorders have a higher sensitivity to dyes especially red and blue. After eliminating those we saw huge improvements in H behavior and manageability.To help you understand just how sensitive he is to this..... today he found a a plastic candy cane filled with red and green Spree candies and that he couldn't get into his mouth fast enough.Yesterday he found a candy cane on the floor of the truck and quickly popped it in his mouth however I quickly snatched it out and earlier this week getting out pf the truck H found a tiny green M&M on the sear within an hour he was anxious aggressive and out of sorts. Anything and everything set him off. Also this week he got into a sucker that his sister accidently left out and he hid under his trampoline for a while munching away on it. 
It could take a few days for this to get out of his system and until then we just have to roll with it and wait for it to pass.We ( us and his doc) call it an allergy due to his reaction to it. There is no rash or anaphylaxis just severe behavior and mood effects. Some think it's hokey and excuse. I say until you experience it first hand don't judge. This has become something of a touchy subject for most. Those who don't understand tend to just think that us as parents are making excuses for our child. 
Just to sort of give you an idea of how much of a difference we see when he get into these things on a typical day H handles most transitions well, his behavior is not to severe and he can stay on task for short periods of time, aggression is lower and so is impulsivity. These last few days he has been climbing on anything and everything, anytime we go from one thing to another he gets wild and out of hand and takes several moments to calm down and get into the grove, he has been so aggressive to myself and others its been very painful. He just is all over the place and his tendency to be echolalic and recite scripted things is more noticeable. 
The next few days will be exhausting for me because it will take forever for  this to move from his system. Actually that is an exaggeration it will take a few days but it will seem like forever.  We will have to be as routine and structured as possible to avoid any further issues which is good because tomorrow we are back to our normal routine and that should help us when it comes to dealing with this. We must be very diligent with what comes into our home and what he comes in contact with. 
 Nothing he is unable to have will come into the house this means treats from friends, school and goodie bags from parties. If there is even a remote possibility of H getting to it we will politely turn it down. We worked so hard for the last year to stick to this and in a matter of a week its all gone to the way side. It is very frustrating and hopefully a week from now we can be back on track.
I generally now keep things in his bag that will be sufficient for him when going to various outings. If I know that the family is unaware of his allergy I find him a cupcake so he can at least have the sweet treat. I also know most parties include a candy filled goody bag so I make sure to find him his favorite cream soda dum dum suckers and some of his gummies so that he can enjoy that once the party ends. If I know pizza will be served I bring him chicken nuggets, we also have a tomato allergy and this one is an actual break out in a bad rash, allergy. I do what I can to make sure he is prepared and able to have as much fun and not feel left out. 
I would really encourage those who are prone to freely hand out food and treats to children to stop and ask the parent and double check to make sure its ok that the child has it. With food allergies and aversions becoming so prominent these days. Not just the food dyes but Gluten, dairy, nuts etc. I never hand over food until I get the ok from parents, when I plan parties or get togethers I always double check to make sure there are no specific allergies etc so that I can include that with our menu and plans so that everyone feels included. Nothing is more depressing to a child to show up at a party and not be able to have say the cake, or food even the beverage. If you aren't able to accommodate at least let the family know so they can plan accordingly.