Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Sweet Faces of Celiac Disease: Meet Chris

Chris is 15 years old and was diagnosed when he was 5 years old with celiac disease.

What symptoms was your child having before being diagnosed?

He began having bouts of really bad stomach aches. The last one Memorial Day weekend being so bad I thought maybe he had appendicitis.  Called the Doctor - that was ruled out on location of pain and we were asked to go in.  Several questions later and we found that the regular ice cream he had been enjoying (its only a summer thing at our 2nd home) was setting off the stomach aches.  Got blood-test and it was confirmed.  Once diagnosed, I learned that the splotchy skin he had was also a result of his CD.  He was also very pale but it was winter / early summer so I really didn't think much of it.

Any other family members diagnosed with celiac disease?

None that we are away of.  I was tested about two years before my son but it was negative.  I am super sensitive to wheat and dairy and just steer clear.

How has your child’s life changed since being diagnosed?

Chris is now a freshman in High School (15 in August) and still doing very well with his on his gluten-free diet.  He has learned to expand his taste and always willing to try new things.  I am so grateful and thankful he was diagnosed when he was and that the Doctor we saw was "on it".  He has grown from a scrawny skinny boy (who was always under percentiles in height and weight) to a 5'8 -140 lbs young man (who is now average in height and weight). The gluten-free world has come a long way with choices and flavors and eating out is not as difficult as it once was.  With all of our college visits for his sisters, we are learning that many accommodate a gluten free diet.  At High Point University they actually have a whole buffet dedicated to Gluten Free only!!!   

What advice would you offer a parent who’s child was just diagnosed with celiac disease?

Social Media!!!  This has been a great site to read and hear other stories.  I have shared several things on my page!!!

Oh man, I had an appendectomy in 2nd grade and I can still remember how bad it hurt!! I'm so happy to see Chris is doing well. And what great news to hear colleges actually know about the gluten-free lifestyle! That's very encouraging! Best wishes to Chris and enjoy         your summer! 

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