This is one mother’s story about her experiences with dairy intolerance.
Dairy intolerance is something I never really knew too much about – I know my little sister had dairy allergies when she was younger but that was really about it.
Dairy intolerance was pretty foreign to me until my son developed it. My little boy is now almost 5 years old. He’s a pretty healthy kid now, but, when he was younger, he suffered from frequent colds, hay fever and mild eczema as a baby and toddler.
He’s always been a great eater, not too fussy and from what I could tell he wasn’t allergic to anything.
Come 2 ½ years old, he showed interest in toilet training. It took quite a while to train him (as with most boys) but finally we made it through! We had quite a lot of problems with poo (sorry, yes we are going to talk about poo here!) He went from doing about 2 poos a day in his nappy to maybe dropping back to doing one every second day in the toilet/potty. And his poos would be quite hard and huge!
The poor kid got to the point where he wouldn’t do poos at all and it became a battle. All along, hubby and I thought it was psychological so we tried every bribe under the sun to get him to go.
For about 6 months we rode the poo roller coaster (that’s a poor analogy I know!) and as a family, became pretty obsessed with when our boy did a poo.
At times, when he was obviously constipated, he would be bloated, irritable, uncomfortable and off his food, and every toilet trip was a major dilemma! Then suddenly he would come good for a while after he eventually did a big poo!
Eventually, I decided we needed some medical help – so off to the GP we went. We were told it was probably psychological in nature but his bowel had become stretched and he’d lost the urge to have bowel motions, so he needed glycerine suppositories daily and Movichol sachets until his motions became regular. That was the worst few weeks of our lives subjecting him to that! Awful! But his bowel motions did go back to normal….until we stopped the bowel treatment! I was at the end of my tether!
After doing some research and chatting to a few other mum friends, I decided to try my son on some dairy-free alternatives, in case he had some sort of dairy or lactose intolerance. I cut down his intake of dairy altogether for a while, then gradually tried him on a couple of dairy substitutes.
He hated soy milk, so I tried him on some lactose-free milk.
Lo and behold! his bowel motions went back to normal, his abdominal bloating settled and he was happier and more active than he’d been for almost 12 months!
Now I know that I may have “self-diagnosed” my son’s dairy intolerance, but when I took him for his 4 year health check last year, the child health nurse supported my actions and confirmed that he probably had a mild form of dairy intolerance and would eventually grow out of it. It definitely explained his symptoms that he’d been suffering the last few months.
Now he’s been on lactose free milk and minimal dairy for the last 12 months or so – he is fully toilet trained and very healthy and happy.
Best news is – no more constipation!!
If you become concerned about any symptoms, please seek immediate medical attention. We have some hotlines and suggested websites for further information and advice.
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