Eczema, allergies and nursing

Monica - posted on 08/17/2013 ( 1 mom has responded )

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My son is 10 months old. Around 7 months he developed a small patch of eczema behind each knee. My ped was not concerned and advised to just use lotion and hydrocortisone if it seemed to be itchy. Since then, he has developed many more patches and is definitely itching. I am not a fan of using hyrdocortisone and have been attempting some natural relief with oatmeal baths, coconut oil and essential oils. When I was strictly nursing before he started solids, he had a mild reaction when I ate shrimp, and so I am assuming a shellfish allergy. He has also had instant hive reactions to directly eating eggs and strawberries. I have begun researching eczema and have found that it is due to allergies, and would like to try to determine what his triggers are. My difficulty lies in that he is now eating solids and I am still nursing, and his eczema never seems to go away fully, but flares worse regularly. How do I determine what is causing this while still nursing? I have tried cutting out dairy for us both, after 2 weeks I see no real difference. I have read that is a common trigger though. Do I try to wean him? If so to what? Dairy based formula? Soy? Almond or soy milk? So many things to consider. I hate that I do not know what is causing these reactions but also know nursing is best. Is what I ingest strong enough in my milk to cause his reactions? The shellfish makes me think yes. Or should I focus on just what he is eating? I have also read that before 18 months is too early for allergy testing to be accurate? Is this true? Any advice from moms that have been through this would be very much appreciated!

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Lori - posted on 09/11/2013

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The only part of your question that I can really answer here is about what you're eating getting through your breastmilk. The answer is YES. If you eat something that he's allergic to he can certainly have a reaction after having your breastmilk. It isn't always as strong of a reaction as it would be if he had eaten the offending item himself... but it's there.

My daughter is allergic to dairy and can't have much soy either. While I was nursing, even if I dipped a carrot in some ranch for a taste... she could have a reaction. That's not much dairy in the ranch to start, I didn't each much of it either, and then she gets what I personally consider the "diluted" version.. .though that's just my own personal way of seeing it... not sure that it really is diluted.

As a "general" rule, what you eat is in your breastmilk about 4 hours after you eat it. So if you start a food diary or something to try to track what's causing flare up.. then yes, you need to include the foods you eat in his food diary.

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