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Overuse of Antibiotics?

Antibiotics
Yep, it’s cold and flu season, just around the corner… actually quite a bit of flu and colds have been around these parts lately.
My husband and I were recently talking about the last time we used antibiotics.  It’s been well over a year… praise God!  That’s pretty much unheard of, in our family of 10.
My daughter dropped a plate on her foot, and had a complete blow out of her toe on the first month of this year.  The doctor on call gave her antibiotics.  We filled the prescription… but decided against giving them to her, unless she showed sign of needing it.  Instead, we kept it cleaned daily with hydrogen peroxide, and wrapped it up for at least a month, and she was fine.  Five months later the toenail fell off, and a new one was appearing.

Things like sinus infections and ear infections have been avoided by using tools like our neti-pot and a 50/50 mixture of rubbing alcohol and apple cider vinegar (with the mother) in each ear for a 5 minute soak 3x a day.

Even when we do get something – it doesn’t linger on forever like it used to.

I call that major progress in this household, and a credit to better gut health!

Now I’m not always against antibiotics, it’s just NOT my first line of defense or second… or… I want to do what I can naturally, before going down that route.

So when DO we need antibiotics?

A recent article in the Wall Street Journal had a handy chart that listed out some times when antibiotics were effective, and when they weren’t.

If you read through the list, many of these things can be avoided in other ways by drinking lots of water, getting plenty of rest, taking vitamins, eating clean, and taking care of your immune system with probiotics and things like cod liver fish oil.

But what do we do when and if we DO get sick?  How do you combat the monster to attempt avoiding antibiotics?
Here is a little list of things we have/do to help things turn around quickly:

1) Drink lots of room temp. lemon water

2) Take zinc and extra vitamin c – up to 500mg an hour (a non-GMO powder form is also good for smoothies for sore throats!), and Sambucol (that has black elderberry and safe for ages 2+ up to adults) or Black Elderberry syrup.

3) Use the Netipot to help clear nasal passages from bacteria/germs and help them dry out.

4) Coconut Oil rub with the following essential oils mixed in (oregano, peppermint and lavender) on the neck, back and chest

5) Bone broth soup from pastured chickens or grass fed meats

6) Oil pushing/swishing in the morning is great to get additional bacteria out of your mouth/throat.  Put a spoonful in your mouth and swish around for 15 minutes, and then spit into the trash can.  (It also helps whiten teeth!)

7) Local raw honey and cinnamon 3x a day

8) Baths for fevers to keep body temperatures down and cotton PJs (Actually I just learned how fire retardant clothing is not good for you – so this winter I’m only buying breathable cotton PJs!)

9) Exercise and sunshine, as you can.  One thing that is great about being sick this time of year – is going outside IS an option.  Extra Vitamin D and sweating out toxins helps!

10)  Good rest.  (One of the reasons I struggle a lot with my issues – is I’m such a POOR sleeper!  Naps and plenty of rest at night is so important to restoration and repair.)

We let fevers run during the day, and give motrin at night for comfort if need be.  A low dose of melatonin is also safe to help kids rest when they are sick, or coughing.   We set up a croup tent as needed for our younger children (under a cardboard table, with a sheet open on one side, when my child needs help to rest through coughing fits.

A special concoction a friend shared with me is going to be added to our list of “treatments” – not to mention it sounds heavenly for winter time.  Enjoy this “tea” recipe.

If you do have to have ANTIibiotics (which kill ALL of the bacteria in your system), make sure you up your PRObiotics, to help replenish the GOOD bacteria in your gut, following the dosing regimen.  You should be taking 8-15 billion a day as an adult, so bump it up to 20-50 billion after antibiotic use, if you’re normally a healthy adult.  If you’re like me, who normally takes 50 billion, bumping it up to 100-200 billion might be a better idea.

If you don’t have any of these products on hand, perhaps now is the time to get them so you’re stocked and ready!  (No one likes to find these things when they’re already not feeling well!)

And…  If you’re wondering some reasons on WHY over use of antibiotics is getting such a bad rap?  This information might help fill you in.

Your gut health is SO important to your immune system, and ultimately your brain and organ function. We need to take good care of it to be Healthy for Him!

“Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.”

James 4:7

Allergies? or Asthma?

My daughter has been on asthma medication for a year, and as I looked back on my own childhood and high school sports career, I started thinking maybe that’s what I had all of these years.  Maybe that’s why I hadn’t enjoyed running?  After January, things were trending worse – as I was showing signs for asthma as well, especially during and after working out…  Suddenly, it was feeling like someone was SITTING on my chest during a workout this year.

Not normal?

No.

So, before thinking gluten could be an issue, my PCP put me on some Symbicort to help me before a workout.  I used it when I did cardio based workouts and was struggling that day, and definitely when I ran.  It did seem to help.

Since July, I have also been having troubles when something goes down the wrong pipe.  I literally feel like I am going to hyper-venilate or choke to death for not getting enough oxygen.  I just can’t seem to get a breath at these times.

It’s scary.

It happened once when I was driving…  and most recently on a senior session.

I took plenty of reading and activities for my 3 hour appointment. I enjoyed planning for our FIRST gluten-free/dairy-free Thanksgiving! I bought this from http://www.livingwithout.com

Well… Wednesday was the day… but I showed up and was told my appointment was SUPPOSED to be in another town.

Ooops.

I felt terrible, but thankfully they could fit me in – the following day, in another nearby town.  SO… I packed my bag of reading material and a drink on Thursday and headed out for my 3 hour appointment.

After a brief assessment with the Dr, following my pulmonary lung function test… the Dr. inquired about what I was looking for, in regards to answers.  I let him know that I was simply trying to rule some things out… and why.

He knew about our trip to Chicago, after my daughter’s asthma appointment last month…  but after realizing my lung function was 100% at resting.. he agreed, it was highly likely my issues with gluten and cross contamination and celiac that were causing a lot of my problems.

Now thankfully, this Dr. has a wife who is a nutritionist… so that has to help matters.  He at least understands the importance of what happens in our bodies if we have gluten issues… and he could easily make the connection as far as our genetics and what was going on with a gluten sensitivity/vs. an auto-immune disease issue – like what we have.  He appreciated my knowledge on the topic and seemed to really care what we were trying to accomplish.

He did say he was very skeptical, because he hears “the gluten intolerance” more and more often from patients.  It makes me wonder, do doctors not listen to patients if THEY assume something is rare, and therefore ignore the concerns… even if they’re very real.  Is this one more reason why 97% of celiac patients go undiagnosed?  

{Not that it’s all celiac, but it’s apparent to MANY people, that gluten is causing issues for more and more people – especially when it comes to auto immune diseases.}

So we tested for environmental common allergies, as well as some more invasive test for molds, and dust mites, and then food allergies to see what was leaky gut from celiac – and what was a true allergy.

Down both arms and 21 across my back where the poke “line up” dots. Only the allergic ones itch, the rest were just tiny bumps.

Well great news.  After about 40 some pokes (that really don’t “hurt”) and some itchy bumps that I couldn’t touch (again, not bad at all)…  We discovered the following:

#1 – I don’t have a food allergy to wheat, barley or rye.  (was I surprised? No.)

#2 – I don’t have an allergy to molds or dust mites!

#3 – I am allergic to two types of rag-weed, and orchid grasses.

Why my allergies are worse when it rains, I’m not sure… but I do have Nasonex for this.  I’ve only had to use it twice since May.  A small miracle, to me.

The doctor and I discussed the asthma-like issues, and decided the best plan of attack was to have two inhalers on hand:

* One for cross contamination risk – so I can work out, even if that happens.

* The other is a rescue inhaler to take with me when I get a choking type of attack – when I struggle to breathe and swallow – without having a sore throat.

So, many times over the course of appointments I’ve had, a doctor will ask…. “Are you SURE what you have is an auto immune related disease, and NOT ‘just an allergy’ you’re experiencing.” (which some allergies are LIFE THREATENING, so I’m totally not belittling food allergies), but I’ve never really had a solid, medical proof answer to say NO, this an auto immune disease…  let me show you WHY I know this.

Now I have more proof.  My issues with wheat, barley, rye and other grains for that matter… have nothing to do with all allergy response.  It has everything to do with the inflammation it causes from my auto immune disease.

It may seem crazy to some… but…

HAPPY ME.

I’m thankful to be able to have that piece of paper to explain myself.

One. Step. Further. To proving my case.

I press on for my children… and to be healthy for Him!

For those God foreknew He also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, 

that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters.”

Romans 8:29

**The update on my eye (uveitis), is – it’s still there – but improved.  We’ve backed off the dilation drops to see how the inflammation does.  So far I’m at 4 drops a day of the steroids, and Monday I drop back to 3x day.  Every morning my eye is swollen and red… by mid-day it looks better, but always feels about the same.  It’s a sort of halo effect when I look at any light, as if there is a filter over that eye and everything is fuzzy.  The coloration is also very different in the eye with uveitis – a red filter seems to cover it.  Since I deal with color (in pictures) a lot – I notice this remarkable difference between the two eyes.  Other than that, just achy and sensitive with headaches  – no stabbing pain. Thanks for the prayers!

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