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How Do You Eat an Elephant?

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If there is one thing that I’ve learned about my health over they years, it’s that restoring your health isn’t an over night process.  There is no magic pill that will fix it, no “one-size-fits-all” answer…

That said, there are common threads in healing, and it starts at getting to the source of a problem.  While reading “The Paleo Approach” book, she talks about how getting your auto immune symptoms in remission, or under control, really depends on your compliance to your route.

I’ve read lots of things that talk about healing MS or other autoimmune diseases, only to NOT talk about an auto immune protocol diet.

Going gluten isn’t mentioned… or being grain-free, or dairy-free… or refined sugar-free… and those are the top 3 things that have to be completely eliminated.  Slowly but surely… we’ll get there.  (But how many people suffer in the process?)

I recently read a commentary on the Paleo Mom Community Facebook page, where someone said the Mayo Clinic actually advised this person to go “Paleo” for autoimmune disease.  “They are big believers of the Paleo diet and advised me to change my lifestyle.”

That surprised me.

I mean, I know it’s true – but you know things are changing if Mayo is starting to pay attention.

While I don’t necessarily like the word “Paleo” – It works – it’s the easiest way to explain to people what it’s like to eat REAL FOOD and to focus on a nutrient dense diet and it’s recognizable by many people…

I think when Paleo doesn’t “work” – there are more food sensitivity issues that need to be addressed.

Sometimes there are also other things that need to be looked at as well… that aren’t diet related.  Sometimes they’re toxins, sometimes they’re structural, and it’s crucial – and you have no clue.

I mentioned a few months ago about my oldest son “tongue thrusting” and being a mouth breather, and the issues that has caused over the years.  I’m sure maybe you thought, how much does that really matter?  (Read this and find out!)  Honestly, I had no clue either.  Our entire family finally met with our Orofacial Therapist to discuss what we need to look at for the kids and myself, and we also had an appointment for our oldest son, who takes first priority with this whole issue.

After much discussion, and evaluation of 5 of the kids, it was determined most have the same issues – deep tongue tie, many had lip and buckle ties, and some type of breathing restriction as well.

She shared about her own kids, and her and her husband’s struggles … and I heard a lot of the similar issues we’re battling.  I’ve read enough to know if you have a poor sleeper,  or a child with speech issues, a child with ADHD personality traits, a slow grower, a poor immune system…  on and on – it’s worth looking into.  THIS could be a missing link to helping to restore your child’s (or your own) health.  Read more about Orofacial Myological Disorders here.

My son has adapted well… I will admit that… but it’s also a huge burden lifted to hear someone who “gets it”… that this needs addressed, and why.  It also gives me great hope that we can DO something for him, so he and the others don’t end up in the position I’m in health-wise.

So we went from the Therapist, to the ENT, and weren’t there very long before we knew surgery was going to be D1’s best option.  He needs a Septoplasty surgery to fix his deviated septum, and they will be removing his adenoids as well.  Oh boy.

So… here’s the long-term goals for revising his tongue thrust and restoring his health:

1. We get him a hole to breathe out of to stop the airway obstruction: Septoplasty, and allow him to heal from surgery (About a month).
2. We do a laser procedure to release his tongue and lip tie, and start therapy which will include regular therapy with deep tissue massage to release a lot of the issues that are currently embedded into his cranium (Functional Cranial Release), neck and shoulders.
3. We look back into expanding his palette, and braces.

Now because this hits home for myself so much…  You know I’m excited to get started on myself as well… I hold all sorts of incredible stress in my neck, and see a chiropractor regularly for adjustments to help me with pinched nerves and my son is the same way.  I’ve always struggled with my posture…  I didn’t know why.  I get a little giddy for HIM just knowing how much better he will begin to feel when this is all said and done!

So how will we eat this elephant?
One. Bite. At. A. Time.

D1’s biggest delight is that his surgery will be in the next 30 days, so he will be able to place high school soccer at a new level this year.  I can only imagine how much faster he will run when he can BREATHE!  Praise be to God for this journey and His leading!

For more reading on this topic.  My Orofacial Therapist recommended the new book:
The Cause and Cure of Malocclusion, by John Mew.

“My son, if you accept my words
and store up my commands within you,
turning your ear to wisdom
and applying your heart to understanding—
indeed, if you call out for insight
and cry aloud for understanding,
and if you look for it as for silver
and search for it as for hidden treasure,

then you will understand the fear of the Lord
and find the knowledge of God.
For the Lord gives wisdom;
from his mouth come knowledge and understanding.
He holds success in store for the upright,
he is a shield to those whose walk is blameless…”

Proverbs 2:1-7

Just Breathe

D1_LIP_TIE

We might take for granted that we breathe.  It’s something we don’t think about often, until our passage ways, by which we take in oxygen, are blocked.  Either we’re stuffed up, or swollen up, or something toxic in the air prevents us from breathing…

How much thought have you given to breathing while you sleep?

Do you snore?

Are you a mouth breather?

Do you “smack” when you eat?

Messy eater?

Drooler?

Have trouble swallowing?

I remember my snoring and lack of ability to breathe being SO bad during pregnancy, my husband asked the doctor if I could “die” – because it sounded like I was gasping for air.  Yes – it was really horrible.

We had our first official “meeting” via Skype with our Oral-facial Therapist this week.  The woman who has insight into helping my 14-year-old be able to close his mouth, retrain his tongue, and avoid yet another round of braces.  Time is of the essence.

Something I didn’t realize until a few days ago, D1 has a lip tie, in addition to his tongue tie.  That’s partly why he can’t close his mouth.  His top lip is “tied” to the skin of his face inside his mouth, not allowing him to pull that lip OVER his teeth, and close his mouth.

His lips are always cracking and dry.  He is a horrible mouth breather.  It often leads to bad breath.

All of that seems pretty minor, comparatively to the quality of sleep he has been missing over the years.

Sleep is essential to your body healing.  Its’ when you repair and recover…. and grow.  There is growth hormone only created when you sleep.

So while getting your inflammation down, and eating a real food diet is helpful, as is increasing your zinc, and getting enough vitamin D…

If you’re not getting the proper oxygen throughout the day, and you’re not getting the oxygen flow at night.

Guess what?

Not cool.

So we discussed all of that… and next week we’re setting up an appointment with an ENT to take a look at D1, so we can address these issues with him first.  I’m fairly positive he isn’t the only one who will be addressed – but the palate expander on several of the other children HAS helped address things dramatically.  She said when you’re talking about even tiny millimeters of space “cleared” to allow oxygen flow, you’re talking huge differences.

While we talked, she shared part of her story.  Very similar on some levels to mine.  Metal toxicity, and healing her body inside out.  She encouraged me to look into expanders myself.  I told her my orthodontist seemed to shy away from that, at my age…  she disagreed, and said it was the best thing she has done, although they used removable devices, so you can eat – it has made HUGE impacts on her sleep and healing.

I can imagine…. just how much that is impairing my healing process.  I do sleep – but I never feel rested.  I just don’t.

She explain how braces used to be addressed, vs. how they are now…  The teeth on top were “aligned” and the bottom jaw was “tucked” under.  (If you can visualize my profile… Beeker from the muppets comes to mind!)  She went on further to say that once you set that bottom foundation – then you set the top teeth on TOP of that, you have a set up a healthy breathing space needed to function.  It changes your face shape, but more importantly – you can breathe.

I try not to think about what if…

However…

What if someone mentioned that PUPPS was related to celiac disease.  I could have changed my diet, instead of being put on steroids… and the snowball that got me to now.  What if my son had been “clipped” years ago… and nursing hadn’t been such a struggle.  Would that have prevented post pardum depression, and all of the issues that were created from lack of family support during those very trying months?  What would be different now?

My head spins.  Literally.

I cry at how many times I didn’t “get” that my son said, “I can’t control my tongue”.  I mean, I get that it’s a strong muscle… but WHO can’t control it.  Seriously?

We have lots of months of things that were include many trips, most likely surgery for multiple kids, as well as myself, and then therapy for a long while to get these things corrected.  It’s not going to be a quick thing.  We’re going to have to make adjustments to not just throw ourselves into things that eat up our time.  We have to make a solid effort to heal, and be open to changes that need to be made.

Most people would probably cringe at the thought of all of this, but I’m actually VERY excited.  I know this is going to help us tremendously.  We are thankful to God, for the knowledge and advancements being made to understand our body better.  Never assume God doesn’t know what He’s doing.  The one thing I didn’t mention – just how much He has grown me, and strengthened our marriage through this process.  It’s solidified our relationship with our kids, and given them opportunities to trust in Him as well.

God is good.  ALL the time, He is good.

 

“And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose.”

Romans 8:28

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