Allergic Reactions…AHHH!!!!

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Left. What Emrist looks like when she is reacting to something. Right. What her skin looks like whenever it decides to be normal.

Poor thing. Her little cheeks are almost always red. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been out in public with her and had someone approach me to tell me how cute her rosy red cheeks are. On a normal day, when her cheeks are only mildly reacting, she does look like something out of a fairytale. Curly blonde hair, blue eyes, fair skin, with a hint of rose on the cheeks. Of course, it is cute to a perfect stranger….but not to me. I know it’s an allergy, and I get to see what kind of torment those little rosy red cheeks bring her when we’re home. They itch. And that rosiness isn’t just exclusive to her cheeks either. It covers her torso, and is behind her ears and knees as well. The worst places are behind her knees because she scratches…constantly. We have to keep her covered, even on the hot days, to keep her from tearing at her skin.

Eczema. Have you heard of it? Well we’ve been battling it for months. I knew it was her body’s way of telling us that she is allergic to something, but I wasn’t really sure what. We’ve suspected dogs for a while, and wondered about our cat too, since the redness never truly goes away. We’ve also wondered about dairy. But we haven’t known with 100% certainty what is causing her reaction, and with her pediatrician wanting to wait until 2-3 years of age, we’ve just had to battle it to the best of our abilities with what little knowledge we have.

About a month or so ago, we were in the backyard playing when our neighbor’s dog came for a visit. Emrist was having a particularly good day in regards to the condition to her skin, so I decided to let the dog play with her. My thought process was that since her cheeks were pretty clear before playing with the dog, if she reacted then I would know for sure that she is allergic to dogs.

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Here she is playing with him. And within 5 minutes her face looked like this:

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It was terrible. Her face flared up worse than it ever has before. She got welts, and her skin started developing scabs almost immediately! I felt like the worst mom that day. I took pictures so that I would have it for our next pediatrician visit. I decided that day, that we would have her tested with or without a referral, because I was afraid of what other scary reactions could be waiting to happen. I called our insurance company later that afternoon, and to my relief, found out that I did not need a referral. Awesome! The only thing was that we would have to meet our deductible (around $400). So we’ve been saving up for that ever since, and just waiting. I had planned on taking her once Benji was out of school for the summer. However, last week we went to visit with some friends in Birmingham, and Em had yet another allergic reaction. This time to mosquitoes.

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This is just one bite. She had a total of five. This one was by far the worst, but the others were nasty and painful too. These pictures were taken over the course of 2-3 days. The one on the left is the day after it happened. It was huge, swollen, and flashing…like a strobe light. I’ve never seen anything like it. It scared me. I mean…what else is she allergic to that I don’t know about?! And what if she’s deathly allergic to bees or something like that, and I don’t know until she’s stung? To be completely honest with you, it terrifies me.

So we are taking her for allergy testing on May 16th. That’s the soonest they could see us. I’m excited and ready to have some answers. I’m also nervous. I have no idea what to expect, and I’m worried it’s going to be traumatic for her.

The reason I’m posting is to ask for pointers/advice. Any of you who have done this, could you tell me what your experience was like? Was it painful? Did it take long? Did you get answers that day, or did you have to wait?

Also…I’m feeling a little overwhelmed by the mosquito allergy. We have a creek behind our backyard, so they are ALLLLLLLLLLLL over the place here. Mosquito paradise. How on earth am I supposed to keep them away from her?! We’ve been drenching her in bug spray, and so far, so good…she’s only gotten one more bite since using the spray. But still…it was one more bite. I’m interested in buying something for our yard. Torches. Candles. Electrical equipment. Anything. I just want to keep them away. Any advice on what I can do? HELPPPPPPPPPPPPP me 🙂

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8 thoughts on “Allergic Reactions…AHHH!!!!

  1. I’m that allergic to mosquito bites, plus mosquitoes seem to think that I am the tastiest thing ever. I got bit on Saturday walking to my car and it was the size of a half dollar by the time I got home.

    Bug spray is obviously your best friend. Citronella candles help but only if you have a lot and only if she stays close to them. You might try growing citronella too. I’ve heard success stories with that. Bug lamps are good; we had a couple of those growing up and they cut down the population some. You may want to consider having the yard sprayed if there isn’t anything the doctors can do for her. I think it’s expensive but it might come out to be cheaper than all the other stuff plus the pain of all those bites.

    I haven’t personally tried the hot spoon trick but it supposedly works quite well. You run a spoon under hot water for a minute to get it pretty warm (just not enough to burn!) and press it on the bite for a couple of minutes. It’s supposed to kill the protein that makes the bites itch. The stuff I read says they still swell but they won’t itch which helps keep them from swelling further when she scratches. Dabbing rubbing alcohol or vinegar has worked for me, as has using prescription strength cortisone.

    I hope they figure out what all she’s allergic to and can help her. Smart thinking on taking all the pictures. I’m sure the allergist will greatly appreciate it.

  2. Angelica says:

    Are you using any kind of home remedies? I have heard from other moms that garlic helps as a first aid remedy or just an “at home” remedy.

    • iMother says:

      Sorry to just now respond to this – it must have slipped my mind! The only home remedy I’ve found is using coconut oil and lavender essential oil. It doesn’t really help prevent the outbreaks, but I do feel like it helps them not get crazy out of control. Thanks for stopping by! 🙂

  3. anissa says:

    Im also highly allergic to mosquito bites. I have been allergic since I was a toddler. ( now 21 ) Not only do they welt up real bad when you get bit but they can also form blisters on top. What I do is buy cortizone cream and just lather that on until it goes away. If a huge blister forms I take a sewing needle and sterilize it and go from the very bottom on the side and pop it. I then put peroxide, neosprin, and a bandaid on till it fully heals. I live in south florida so my environment is against me all year round. I never leave the house with OFF! and I always light bug candles around my front door and patio.

  4. […] she was allergic to dogs and cats (we owned a cat at the time). You can read about that journey here and here if you need to catch […]

  5. Jen says:

    My daughter reacts like this to mosquito bites and has constant excema on her face. Did you figure out how to help with the mosquito bites?

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