Monday, May 16, 2016

Sweet Faces of Celiac Disease: Meet Amelia

Amelia is 2 1/2 years old and was just recently diagnosed a few months ago.

What symptoms was your child having before being diagnosed?

The most extreme symptom that grabbed our attention and prompted a late night trip to the ER was her distended tummy. One night I gave her a bath and just couldn't believe how small and ill her body looked. Other symptoms she showed include: constant eating but never being satisfied & actually losing weight, extremely temperamental and throwing fits of rage, paleness, lethargic during day & trouble sleeping at night, a history of throwing up randomly after eating, constipation & pale stools. There might be more I'm forgetting. My husband & I didn't even have Celiac Disease on our radar for her, but once we started researching and learning more we were fairly certain she would be diagnosed. Our doctor ordered several different blood tests & we requested the Celiac test be added on. Thankfully he agreed. Her numbers came back super high and a biopsy confirmed her diagnosis 2 months later.

Any other family members diagnosed with celiac disease?

Immediate family members have been tested, but all came back negative. We are waiting to test her baby sister until she's a little older.

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

Her life has changed pretty dramatically! First of all, she is growing! She's gained 4 pounds in the 3 months since her biopsy! She has more energy and is filling out...she just looks healthier! She is happy, silly, and her speech has flourished! She is happy to tell people she is gluten free and knows to keep her food to herself and wash her hands often. We have all gone gluten free in our home so we can make sure she is always safe when she is here.

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

My advice would be to take baby steps. I had no clue how to sort, organize, and clean my gluten bombed kitchen because I thought I had to know everything and take care of everything at once. So, I organized some toy shelves instead, haha! Ask questions, meet with a dietician, and do what you can. It's ok to not know it all!

I'm so happy to hear Amelia is doing wonderful!! And yes, it's okay not to know it all! I'm still learning and I've been doing this for almost           7 years!! Best wishes to Amelia and keep up the good work Mom!

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