Pregnancy and the Pelvis

I was reminded by my husband to pen down my experiences to help others make sense of similar experiences.

When I was pregnant with my 3rd child, I came down with pelvic pain in my 2nd trimester. The pain persisted till post delivery. I am 5 months post partum now and I am still undergoing rehabilitation.

Cause of pelvic pain: a rotated and tilted pelvis, which caused inflammation in my left Sacroiliac joint (SIJ).

Symptoms: I couldn’t walk normally. I could only limp very slowly. I felt pain getting up from a lying down position, felt pain from sitting, getting in and out of the car, toileting. I couldn’t lie on my left side. I couldn’t bend over to wear socks or pants while standing up. My movements were pretty much restricted. Lying flat on my back was the most comfortable position.

What helped during pregnancy: Physiotherapy helped me sit better and it was the daily pelvic exercises and deep breathing exercises which got me through till childbirth. However, physiotherapy did not resolve my walking problem.

What helped after pregnancy: Chiropractic adjusted my pelvis back to its neutral position. I only found out that my pelvis was rotated and tilted from my chiropractor. He advised me to ice the SIJs as frequently as I can to reduce the inflammation. It took about 5 sessions before I could walk better. I am now 5 months post partum and I’m walking normally. Sitting for a stretch of 30 mins still puts pressure on my SiJs and I would need to walk to relieve some discomfort. Swimming, SIJ strengthening exercises, stretches, physiotherapy exercises are great in complementing the chiropractic treatment.

I wish no other mums would go through the pains I had. My advice would be to seek chiropractic treatment when you feel any discomfort in your pelvis or lower back during the pregnancy. I had no knowledge about chiropractic during my pregnancy. Had I known, I would have gone for it, after experiencing how effective it is on hindsight.

Heal Your Gut, Heal Your Skin

It felt like a year of progress for my son, Z’s eczema condition. Last December 2018, Z had another eczema outbreak after a bout of HFMD. In Jan/Feb 2019, we consulted a naturopath doctor who used blood testing to determine her patients’ food intolerances. It was a major revelation for us to find out that Z was intolerant to potatoes, and a combination of dairy and grain. The test also revealed he was lacking in potassium. We started him on an elimination diet, eliminating potato, dairy, gluten and egg. He was prescribed glutagenics, digestive tonic, potassium cell salts, and non-dairy probiotics to kickstart his gut-healing process.

[Why the gut? The gut is responsible for the digestion of food, absorption of nutrients and excretion of waste. In the case of a food intolerance, the gut is unable to digest it, or works very hard to digest it, thus wearing out the gut lining. When the gut lining wears out, toxins then starts to leak out from the gut and into the system, leading to a compromised immune system. People may experience gastro-intestinale disorders, skin symptoms, neurological symptoms, respiratory disease, metabolic/endocrine/hormonal disorders, muscular-skeletal disorders, and reduced immunity.]

The doctor pointed out that Z’s dark eye rings are a sign of yeast infection and food intolerance, and she prescribed him a garlic supplement (in liquid form) to clear the yeast infection.

[What causes yeast infection? Possible causes are the use of antibiotics and vaccinations.]

After 3 months or so, we saw considerable improvements in Z’s skin. Most of the eczema on his neck and limbs cleared up, except for a stubborn patch on his left arm.

Being on a potato-free diet is challenging, because many commercial products like bread, pre-made paste, pre-made sauces, cereals, biscuits, cookies, all contain some derivative of potato or potato starch. For eg. baking powder, iodized salt, synthetic B vitamins (found in fortified cereals, bread, milk etc.). On hindsight, although not being able to consume these foods seemed like a decrease in his quality of life, but in fact, he’s consuming higher quality fresh food which is a lot healthier for his body. He has not fallen sick from the time we started treating his gut!

Heal your gut, heal your skin. Treat your gut, gain your immunity.

 

 

New Natural Eczema Management Routine!

zephy's eczema improvement

As of the start of 2018, I tried out a new eczema management routine on Z who’s 5 year old.

How this new routine was birthed:

Dec 2017 – Z had a bad flare up of eczema during our trip to Malacca. Eczema spots erupted on his face, and the spots on his limbs became more severe. When we returned home, we brought him to see our naturopath doc who also practises TCM. Dr Raymond combines both knowledge in his practice. After he saw Z, his assessment was that the body is detoxing due to Z’s slowed-down digestive system. The detox process would take 3 weeks. He told us that in meantime, Z should also abstain from banana, cereal, artichoke, pumpkin and cucumber. This triggered my memory that Z ate quite a number of bananas and cereals in Malacca. So alas, those were the culprits for the flare up. We were also advised to feed Z vitamin C.

At around the same time, I started Z on DNA probiotics for kids, and DNA OPC-3 chews for kids, after having done some research that probiotics and OPC help with skin improvement. We alternated his intake – 1 OPC chew on one day, 1 probiotics chewable tablet on the next day.

I also tried out Dermaveen moisturiser and Dermaveen bath and shower oil since the previous moisturisers did not seem to be working. The effectiveness of Dermaveen products lies in the colloidal oatmeal.

3 weeks later (Jan 2018) – We went back to Dr Raymond for a review. This time, Raymond assessed that Z had clogged up mucus in his sinuses and it is slowing down his digestion, which is causing the detoxification through his skin. Z was prescribed herbal meds in capsule form to clear up his sinuses. Next review in 1 month’s time.

1 month later (Feb 2018) – Z finished his meds. Raymond assessed him and reported that most of the sinuses has cleared up and his skin was under control. There was some mucus residual at the front portion closer to his nose, but it would dry up by itself. Thus, Z did not need to be on more meds. Praise the LORD!

Next step: To monitor. Review in 1 month’s time.

Ongoing routine for Z from Jan 2018 to Mar 2018 (today):

  • Alternating 1 OPC chew and 1 probiotics chewable
  • Dermaveen moisturiser applied after every shower or when the skin looks a tad dry
  • Dermaveen shower and bath oil at every shower
  • ChildLife Vitamin C once a day
  • ChildLife Fish oil once a day
  • Topical application of diluted oregano oil (from Young Living) on chest and back to improve immunity of his respiratory system 2-3 times a day
  • Abstain from eggs, yellow noodles, cucumber, cereal, artichoke, banana, and pumpkin (it’s not a food allergy or intolerance but a temporary abstinence until his sinus and digestion is sorted out completely)
  • Occasional application of aloe vera (fresh from the leaf) on eczema spots when the weather is hot and humid. I peel off the leaf layer and rub the aloe vera gel directly on the skin. This plant is worth buying! It thrives in Singapore weather, drier sandy soil, and the cooling effect of the aloe vera soothes itch.

The results of this natural routine have been amazing! Every person’s body make-up is different, hence I believe the routine will be varied for each person. It took me trial-and-error, and being sensitive to God’s leading, to arrive at this.

For those of you who are keen to find out more about the products used in this routine, I will be happy to share what I know 🙂

Coconut Oil for Eczema

Diluted frankincense was great for smoothing out the skin, and healing the broken skin, however it left my DS’ skin quite dry. On cooler days, we see improvements, but it flares up more on hotter days. Just yesterday, the weather was warmer, and we are beginning to see new patches on his cheeks which is so disappointing. I feel my heart racing up and down with the condition of his eczema-plagued skin. It’s been 1 year 4 months since its 2nd onset. The almond figs tea which cleared his 1st round of eczema when he was 18 months old does not appear to work as well for him now.

Hence, the search and waiting upon God continues.

I decided to try out virgin cold-pressed coconut oil as a moisturizer instead of his usual physiogel ai cream as I was hoping to switch to something more natural and affordable. Hoping it works as well, or even better.

Praying everyday for breakthrough.

Frankincense #1

This shall be a short excerpt documenting the use of frankincense oil on my Z’s eczema patches.

I decided to give this oil a shot after reading up how it reduces the redness of skin without the risk of “steroid-withdrawal” symptoms. It’s been 5 days since I began applying on Z’s arm joints which flared up on 6 Oct.

(Taken on 16 Oct – some improvements in his right arm and I also noticed less scratching)

The ‘Good Angel’ Prayer

psalm--prayer

Reading this verse reminded me of my children’s request for my husband and I to pray for the good angel to watch over them while we put them to bed. Every night without fail, they will remind us to include that line in our goodnight prayers. If we had forgotten, my 5 year old will run out of the room with a worried frown upon his face.

Not sure when this concept entered these tiny minds but I am glad it did – that they found safety and protection in spoken prayers. It shows their pure child-like faith in God which sometimes, I am guilty of not having. I have much to learn from my children.

Raising children is truly a season of spiritual journey for adults. Ups and downs there will be. Emotional joys and setbacks there will be. But overall, the spiritual growth is what counts and makes us better people. The outcome being intangible gems which captivate our spirits and souls.

Meeting Children’s Emotions

Having grown up in an Asian culture where emotions are hardly spoken about, the topic on ‘validation of emotions’ did not come naturally for me. It was only after knowing social workers, a psychologist, and reading Dan Siegel’s ‘The Whole-Brain Child’ was I introduced to this whole notion.

The opportunity came for me to apply this strategy was when my 2.5 year old boy avoided me after he got scolded for deliberately screaming when he did not get what he wanted. When emotions were settled down the next day, I spoke to him while he was playing in his mini bathtub. It is easier to speak to a child when he’s engaged in some activity (strategy from ‘The Whole Brain Child’).

“Are you angry with Mama?” I asked (naming the emotion to tame it). He paused. I could clearly see his brain gears were turning. Then he nodded his head. I went on to say sorry if I was unable to meet his needs back then, and he could have been tired, hence the tantrum (recounting the story is another strategy).

“Mama angry. Didi angry.” He replied. Then he chuckled and smiled at me. I inferred he was telling me we were both angry with each other, and maybe he avoided me out of fear of my anger.

After that simple conversation, things were back to normal. The relationship was restored. Validation of emotions – it really works!

Post-MMR Vaccination

The past week was spent pacifying my grouchy 17 month old J who had a post-MMR vaccination reaction. Of course, there were many many thoughts which ran through my mind and heart as I witnessed my own son’s discomfort from a compulsory vaccination.

The issue of forced vaccination remains highly debatable. Is it really helpful for public safety or more destructive for our immune system in the long run? I ain’t a medical doctor, nor have any credentials in any science or medical field but what I do know is that vaccinations bring side effects that no one can predict will occur in any adult person or baby/toddler. The spectrum of these side effects are wide-ranging and questionable and no one can explain why. Simply because our immune system is way too complex for anyone to fully understand it. It’s God’s design and who can fully understand an infinite God? Are we then toying around with a time-bomb here by allowing vaccines to manipulate our immune system when we don’t understand fully how it works in the first place? These are some random thoughts which came to me and I am taking the liberty to pen it down as my release of emotions.

J is still having symptoms of measles, what the PD called ‘modified measles’ or ‘vaccine-induced measles’. My first query is why J’s immune system is reacting in this way, and secondly, if anyone can ascertain for sure that nothing will happen to J for his 2nd dose of MMR. Sadly speaking, no one can say for sure. The consequences remain largely unknown and far-reaching.

Isn’t it then dangerous to force vaccination on a young child if the consequences are unknown and unpredictable in some rare cases?

Who should be accountable for any detrimental effects should they happen? The parents? The government? The pharmaceutical giants? The blame game can continue till the cows come home and it will still remain inconclusive.

I managed to source for another PD who is also an immunologist/allergist. I am hoping to find answers to my queries from someone who perhaps, have studied our immune system more in-depth. Her clinic is also one of the rare ones in Singapore which carry the single dose of measles (ie. no mumps and rubella included).

Hopefully this will help me find some resolve.

Reflections on 2015

A big part of 2015 was adjusting to having 2 boys in the 0-3 years age stage. This stage is one that can be characterised by one word ‘Change’. Just when we think we have got our kids figured out, they change. Another curveball thrown at us.

But it gets us seeking God all the time, to ask Him what’s going on, and how to lessen the tantrums. The strategies are actually very practical. God is very practical. Usually, it is about our kids wanting the ‘special’ time with us and that eases much of the tension at home.

Discovering the love language of our kids is also useful. Z’s love language is physical touch. As long as he gets his daily dose of hugs and hand-holding, he behaves well.

2016 will be another year of discovery and learning what makes our kids tick!