Having grown up with asthma and allergies by 6 months of age my biggest fear is that I would pass this onto my child. I never developed food allergies myself until my late twenties but in the beginning Dr appointments with my son I found myself anxious and digging into what signs I should be looking for. My sons pediatrician would always assure me that I would be seeing much bigger signs when it came to asthma but it could develop anytime if it was going to.
Common Signs/Triggers Of Asthma with Toddlers;
- Less energy during playtime
- Frequent coughing spells during exercise or at nighttime
- Rapid Breathing, shortness or loss of breath
- Feeling weak or tired
- Exercise and Stress
- Airway infections
- Irritants such as smoke, chemicals, cold air and air pollution
Allergies weren’t much of a concern since I knew my husband had never had any allergies and mine only consisted of walnuts, figs, pecans and hazelnuts. My reaction isn’t a serve one, just mild throat swelling and can usually be controlled with a Benadryl.
It wasn’t until my son turned 5 months that I became eager to experiment with some scrambled eggs that I was eating for breakfast. My husband, son and I had all gone out of town to a remote town in northern Idaho. It didn’t even cross my mind that egg allergies are much more common than one would think. I remember giving my curious son a tiny bite of my scrambled egg, which he only put on his tongue and than spit it back out. Within minutes of letting him try the egg he started to get blotchy red patches and began to develop hives on his upper back and face. I immediately went into panic mode, thinking I had just made a HUGE mistake. My sons Dr’s office was closed, luckily I had a friend with me who’s sister in law was a pediatrician. She immediately called to see if I needed to rush him into the ER but based on his symptoms she said Children’s Benadryl would be sufficient and to keep a close watch on his symptoms. My husband luckily was able to get some Children’s Benadryl at the local store nearby and I gave him this immediately with the dosages she suggested due to him being younger than the boxes instruction. (I have included a infant dosage chart below) Within about 5 minutes his symptoms started to go away and I was in a state of relief.
After that weekend I decided to take him into the Drs office to get him checked. The Dr advised me to wait on eggs until he grew older. Fast forward to my son at 11 months and he was eating scrambled eggs, quiche, muffins made with eggs no problem.
It wasn’t until he was about 14 months old the symptoms started to show back up. My first thought was maybe it was the difference between store bought eggs and my own chickens eggs. With trial and error I soon realized this was not the case, allergies would happen no matter what. On top of egg allergies I started to see a mild allergy with his skin when I would feed him peanut butter, to which he never had an issue with this before. The peanut allergy symptoms were only red blotchy skin no hives but I knew I needed to go see the Dr again to get more information. The Dr immediately referred me to a blood test at the local hospital and results did show mild peanut allergy plus an allergy to egg whites. After seeing these results he wanted me to take him to an asthma/allergy clinic to get skin allergy testing. The appointments were at least 2 months booked out so we waited. I knew I had to cut scrambled eggs completely out at this point but he was still able to eat things cooked with egg; pancakes, muffins and zucchini bread. Instead of peanut butter I substituted almond butter and sunflower butter, which he seemed to still enjoy.
Once we got into the asthma/allergy testing we explained what we had done going up to this point. The Dr told us he had read a lot recently about cooking eggs in things which can build kids tolerances up with allergies but wanted to test to confirm that this was the case with our son. Tests results did show that he had outgrown his peanut allergy and the egg allergy was so mild he wanted to do a “in clinic” egg challenge. This would be a appointment where we would slowly and safely introduce scrambled eggs again and see what happens under the supervision of his staff over several hours. He came out successful in this challenge and was cleared to eat ALL eggs again 🙂 With food allergies you just never know and I will always carry Childrens Benadryl in his diaper bag as you just never know when your body wants to start rejecting something or maybe something they have never been introduced to before. This has also come in handy with friends that have not previously had the experience we did.
Since I originally wrote this post I just received a bill from the Asthma and Allergy Dr. $350+ to sit in a room and feed our kid scrambled eggs that we brought in. If I had to do this over again my husband and I would sit in a hospital parking lot and do it ourselves!!!!
Benadryl Dosing Chart
DIPHENHYDRAMINE (Brand Name: Benadryl)
For infants 6 months or older only**
Benadryl is an antihistamine, so it can be used for allergic reactions and allergies. It can be given every 6 hours. Benadryl comes in Children’s liquid suspension, Children’s Chewable tablets, Children’s Meltaway strips or adult tablets.
**DO NOT give benadryl to a child younger than 2 years unless advised by your physician