Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Cold Season Already?

I have a cold.  It's what I call a "head cold" and I almost never get them.  During the winter months, I increase my resistance by taking extra vitamin supplements, including D3.  I did not get a cold all of last year, but, I sure do have one now.  (Sniff-sniff)  I do not take any OTC medicines when I get a cold.  I suffer it through and am generally better within 5 days.  The symptoms are rough, but shorter duration is what I go for.

When my kids get a cold, I don't give them cold medicine either -- especially if it has red #40 in it!  No way! 

We've experienced crazy behavior too many times... so the last few years we've used what I call "old fashioned" remedies for our colds.  Hot steamy showers, diffused essential oils (RC & Thieves), lots of fluids - including hot teas, juicing, staying home and increasing sleep and rest, etc.  Most people want to feel better right away - me too!  However, I have personally found that taking medicines that mask the symptoms have negative effects on us and prolong our illness.  Quite the opposite effect of why we would want to take them!

Ran across a great post about OTC medicines and such -- over at The Autism File:

"The FDA recommends that parents and caregivers check the active ingredients on the product label. Parents and caregivers should also check the inactive ingredients on the label, as both may affect the well-being of a person with ADD, ADHD, or ASD.

Inactive ingredients such as preservatives, dyes, and other excipients can cause allergic reactions, such as rash, exacerbation of asthma symptoms, anaphylaxis, hyperactivity, and, in some cases, upset stomach and diarrhea.
■First, you can ask your pharmacist to look at the package insert. Under the title “description” at the very top of the insert, there is a list of all the ingredients in a manufactured product.

■Second, check a Physicians’ Desk Reference (PDR). The PDR is a compilation of package inserts printed as a book. Most libraries and large book stores have a copy of the PDR. Unfortunately, only the most current high volume prescription drugs are in the book.

■Third, you can look online. Find the official website of the prescription drug you are checking on. Click on “health care professional” and then go to the prescribing information section, which will bring up a copy of the package insert. The first item listed is the description, and the inactive ingredients are listed there."
You can link over to the whole article here.  She has a couple of great tables highlighting many of the ingredients that we avoid - including sodium benzoates and the effects of  such on those with special needs.  I also personally think that hand washing does an amazing job of ridding germs and assists in fighting off colds too.

Isn't it funny that so many  informative websites (IMHO) are autism related?  Yet - they are beneficial to the whole family.  Again, in my opinion.  The older I get and the more I experience, the more opinions I have.  I hate cold and flu season.  I will work hard on prevention again this year.  Really hard. 

Friday, September 2, 2011

The Dentist is Not A Flouride God

I took the kids to a new dentist, recently. Normally, when we go to the dentist, I prepare myself to be lectured and scolded because of our decisions to NOT use fluoride.  I usually rehearse what I may need to say -- so that I am not caught off-guard and I re-familiarize myself with just how much money the lobbyists and dental associations actually make.  This time:  I did none of that.  I simply went as a mom.  A mom taking her kids to the dentist.  Period.

I told the receptionist that I wanted to get my children's teeth cleaned and that we would need x-rays, but - that we would not be having fluoride treatments.  Apparently she listened, (heard) and understood what I said because they did not have the fluoride out on the trays nor  did they ask me if I wanted it.  The hygienist starting looking for it and quickly realized that we were declining treatment and then... she offered my kids some stickers.  That's it!

No lecture.  No guilt.  No thoughts of, "Why don't they get it?"

Oh, by the way -- NO CAVITIES!  I was and am so happy!  Makes me want to chant:  no cavities - we have no cavities!  Excuse my lack of proper grammar when elated.  By the way, my children do not have any cavities! 

No cavities - we have no cavities! 

The last 2 years we have used Young Living toothpaste.   Don't judge me - just rejoice that my kids did not have any cavities... ok?  Healing takes years and we are not going back to the chaos of what it used to be like when we went to the dentist.  I went through years of humiliation. 

No cavities - we have no cavities! 

There are 3 man-made chemicals (that I've blogged about before) in most toothpaste: Sodium fluoride, Sorbitol and sodium lauryl sulfate.  In my opinion, they should not be in anything that touches our skin on a regular basis, let alone in our mouths!  (sigh)
A quick reminder about fluoride...  By law, the amount of or concentration of Sodium fluoride cannot exceed 1000 ppm (parts per million) for adults and 500 ppm for kids. If higher, there is concern that the "fluoride ion might react with calcium ion and magnesium ion in the human body and cause low level calcium ion and magnesium ion in blood".   For those of us who fight to get supplements in our kids, we sure don't need to make things worse!

Basically, Sorbitol is a liquid that keeps toothpaste moist/wet. Sodium lauryl sulfate  makes toothpaste foam (and gives lather to shampoo as it strips the hair). However, both could be a laxative, causing diarrhea - if they have been swallowed. C'mon -- kids swallow everything and when trying to pinpoint allergies and reactions, it is so hard to trace what affects our kids... but - toothpaste?  Well, you test it out and see if there's a connection.

Thieves Dentarome Toothpaste 

All 3 varieties of Thieves toothpaste are from natural sources. The active ingredient is the essential oil blend - Thieves. Don't judge the name - read about it here.
The constituents of essential oils in Thieves -- thymol, eugenol and eucalyptal are documented to be antibacterial! These ingredients fight the development of plaque and reduce the severity of gingivitis and cavities without side effects. Thieves toothpaste is also effective against 6 different common organisms that can cause oral infections, such as periodontal diseases; Streptococcus oralis, Streptococcus pyogenes, Streptococcus pneumoniae,Streptococci sanguis, Bramunella catarrhalis and Candida albicans.

Our whole family uses Thieves toothpaste and as a distributor for Young Living, this is one of the many Young Living products that I believe in.  It does what is claims to do. There is nothing else like it and so we continue to use it.

No cavities - we have no cavities.