Thursday, December 18, 2008

Baby Allergies

I am on emergency leave again, although I myself am sick, but I've run out of MC days. This is the first time Baby Salma's sick for more than 2 days! It started out as an allergy, which you've got to be careful with if you have a small baby or child. Her allergic reactions are similar to her father's and mine, which isn't shocking since she's our daughter after all, but can you believe it, I was surprised when she showed the symptoms? Non-stop runny nose, and puffy, watery eyes. I usually get this way when my sinus acts up (same like my husband), or when there is a frangrance/gasseous substance that I am allergic to. The usual example is when I am in an elevator with someone that has put on very strong perfume, I will sneeze or cough, and my eyes start to water.

Salma's allergy started on Sunday night. On Monday, it was pretty bad, and I brought her to our pediatrician, who at first prescribed only saline nasal spray. Then I got pretty worried yesterday (Wed), when they told me at the nursery that she wasn't drinking well. Because on the very same day, I had started to develop a sore throat, and I myself wasn't drinking well, cos my throat was sore. So I wondered whether this was the cause for Salma, too. Poor thing, she was all sad at school when I went to visit her at lunch.

When we got home, she was having real difficulty drinking her milk cos her nose was blocked. And it was worse this morning. She screamed so much, I felt so bad for her. Then Ainal (my husband), as a final resort, sucked the mucus from her nose orally, since the nasal spray didn't do the trick. She screamed wondering what daddy was doing, poor thing. But it's better than her not being able to breathe through her nose at all.

At 9 am, I brought her to our pediatrician again, Dr. Wong, whose clinic is just 5 mins away by car. Thank God eh? And I am always amused by how she always dispenses her diagnosis and advise really quick and with a smile. And when one patient is done, she immediately rings the bell for the next one. And there are always more than 3 patients waiting to see her when I come. And by the time it is my turn, there would have been another 3 patients lining up after me. Anyway, the first time Dr. Wong concluded that Salma had an allergy because there was no fever, but because she's started to cough when she drinks, this shows that she's been swallowing her phlegm instead of spitting it out. So doc was more worried than before and prescribed nasal drops and a clear cough mixture. She said if Salma doesn't get better, it could spread to her lungs by Saturday, and we can't have that because her kenduri akikah and cukur jambul is on Sunday.

Marina, the principal of Salma's playschool, also gave me advice about the nose drop. Just like Dr Wong, she doesn't like to use it unless really necessary because it leaves an aftertaste in the baby's mouth which makes them uncomfortable. But with Salma, it seemed to help her drink her milk after, and now she's been asleep for more than 2 hours! :) Marina also told me that at this early age, the breastfeeding mum must really pantang, and take care of what they eat, so that we don't trigger any allergies in our babies. So no seafood, no peanuts, and no lamb for me. I think I may have triggered her allergies on Saturday, when I used oyster sauce to cook the broccoli. So there you go... I must be more careful now. I was aware that I had to be careful (cos I read lots or articles while I was pregnant), but it completely slipped my mind once I started breastfeeding! So my advice to you is, if you are asthmatic, stay away from all these "danger" foods while you are breastfeeding, at least until the baby is old enough.

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