Recently, we have been witnessing first-hand how BAD Kya's allergies really are! We discovered that she can break out in hives after sitting in the same place where someone ate tree nuts, in this case, cashews. One night, I ate a couple handfuls of cashews while sitting in my bed. The next morning, Kya sat on my side to watch a cartoon on my TV and she broke out in hives. And it's not like when I eat cashews, I get them all over. But there must have been enough of the oils that got on the blankets that it affected her.
We also learned that we cannot have tree nuts in our house at all! Only a few weeks ago, while we were at the store, we passed the nuts, and the cashews just looked SO good! I suggested to Russ that maybe we could buy some, since Kya is older and knows she cannot have them. He was wary, but I insisted, so we bought a can. We made sure to keep the can up high, and we only ate them after the kids were in bed.
One day, Russ took a handful, put the can back on a shelf in our room below the TV, and one tiny piece fell onto my desk below. Just one. It wasn't even a whole cashew! And guess who found it? Kya. And she ate it, ironically, as I was standing right next to her and talking to her about her tree nut allergy.
The second she put it in her mouth, she started reacting. She then took it out, handed it to me, and asked "Mommy, is this a tree nut?" You can imagine how I reacted! Actually, I think I was pretty calm. The inside of her mouth started swelling, then the coughing started, the gagging, then the throwing up, and there were hives around the one corner of her mouth and down that side of her neck, and all over her tummy and back! During all of that, we administered Benadryl and got to use the epi-pen for the first time!
She was really brave, cried a lot, but handled it very well. Luckily, the epi-pen did its job, and she didn't have to take a trip to the ER!
We learned our lesson. We will not be buying any tree nuts again! Because this is Kya here....she will find them!
The next week, she had another allergic reaction. (this one is of the pictures posted) We are not sure what exactly she reacted to. The only logical thing I can think of is we had fresh lemons that night with salmon that I baked for dinner. Right before dinner, Kya took a bite of lemon, then complained a minute later that her mouth felt funny. At dinnertime, she wouldn't eat, and kept saying her tummy felt funny. So I put her in the bath instead. As I rinsed her head with water, she rubbed her eyes, and that's when she started reacting to the unknown allergen.
Minutes after she rubbed her eye, I noticed two little hives under her right eye. So I got her out of the bath immediately, and then she started coughing non-stop, and started gagging and telling me she was going to throw-up. Her eye just kept swelling bigger and bigger. We gave her Benadryl, which seemed to help the coughing a bit, but her poor eye just got worse!
Her eye stayed swollen all night long, and when she got up the next morning, both eyes were swollen. I took her to the Children's Clinic, and we got an oral steroid prescribed to help the swelling, though it took 48hrs before she was looking like herself again, and only had a "black eye" remaining.
I love this last picture! Even though she had been through a lot, she was still very happy and didn't act too bothered by it all. We realized we need to educate her more about her food allergies, as well as the rest of the kids, because a little tree nut to her is life-threatening.
She gets to visit our local immunologist in a few weeks and get tested for further food allergies, so I am anxious to find out the results. It could be lemons, or maybe it was something the lemons came in contact with, or maybe it was the fish, or something totally unrelated! Either way, we are learning quite a bit, and hoping we don't have to use another epi-pen for a long while!
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