Saturday, December 20, 2008

Potty Talk

WARNING - this is not a pleasant subject. If you are not a mother familiar and comfortable with diaper discussions, you may want to navigate away from this page at this time.

Maggy has a diaper rash.

Maggy has had the same diaper rash since at least August.

I have tried everything under the sun to treat it.

I am at my wits end and to the point of tears several times this week, knowing that she is in pain and I can not fix it.

We have gone to the doctor twice to address this rash. Initially, she tested negative for strep and we were told that it appeared to be a yeast rash. Treat with Clortimizole and even the stronger Tinactin. Balmex. Desitin. Boudreaux's Butt Paste. Arbonne Baby Care. Triple Paste. Bag Balm. Aquaphor. Acidopholous. Yogurt. Baking Soda Baths. Naked bootie pooping on the carpet. EVERYTHING I can think of, we have tried.

The second trip to the doctor - yesterday - we were told, "it doesn't look like strep or yeast, it just looks like the skin has been burned from the acidic poop". The only new suggestion - hydracortizone cream - a steriod to reduce swelling. And then I was told to "change her right after she poops, lots of barrier cream and often, give her a chance to air out, lots of baths and make sure she isn't eating a lot of fruit.

Insanity (def) - doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.

DUH!! I've already been doing that!

I'm really feeling as if the doctors have failed me, failed my child. There is something else going on, and we are not getting to the root of the issue.

The root - she has a minimum of 4 BMs a day. She continues to be prolific pooper, even when gets little to no fruit or fruit juice or fiber. Her skin will never have the opportunity to heal like it needs to. The doctor did take a sample for testing but mostly because I brought it in and mentioned that the dog had been diagnosed with a parasite. We have only had the dog for 6 weeks and Maggy has had this problem for at least 5 months.

I wonder if she could have Candida (Leaky Gut), or maybe a hidden food allergy. After the holidays I will be looking for a natureopath to see if we can get a fresh perspective. The doctor thinks that her digestive system is normal. Is it normal to deny a child fruit, which is supposed to be part of the normal FDA approved diet?! She also has had a much harder time than any of my other children when it comes to settling for bed time. This was also written off by the doctor as normal. Maybe. But maybe not. Maybe the two have something to do with each other, maybe not.

I am putting this out there to ask for advice, if you have any suggestions, I would love to hear about them.

Regardless, this experience has also brought me to a place of new trusting in the Lord. I want to fix it, and I want to control it. I forget that these children have been loaned to me, but they belong to the Lord. And I must put my trust in Him to help my daughter in this. I am doing what I can with the here and now, but starting yesterday, I am petitioning to God for her healing. If you have a moment to lift her up, please pray.


  1. Oh hunny bunny.
    First, this isn't potty talk or even diaper discussion. This is a plea for help and a statement of faith.

    I don't have any suggestions. It seems like you have, indeed, done everything you can do.

    You do your best, He'll do the rest. I will pray for your daughters bum. :(

    I just started taking my girls to a Natropath in Beaverton. They've only been once to her so far (we've seen the MD several times) and so far we really like this ND. She spent an hour on each girl. Yes, we were there for three hours.

    She said "you can throw pestisides on a garden all you want. But how many times does it take before you relize, maybe the soil is bad and we need to replant."

    So she's working on the girls' insides and combating our issues inside then out instead of just topical topical topical.

    If you want her name I'll send you an email, but like I said, we've only been there once (we have another in Jan).

    Be strong Mommy, God will help. His will is health.

  2. There is a wonderful Christian ND who goes to our church. He prays with you as part of your exam. He has been helping me with Ethan's skin.

    I don't know what is causing the rash. Poor Mags. I have sene dramatic results with calendula and also with some other salve I have. If we can get to each other, I will give you some of each to try so you don't have to buy yet MORE not knowing if it will work.

    Ouchie. It is so heartbreaking to see our little ones suffering.

  3. Maybe you tried this but I didn't see it on your list. Have you put silver water ON her bum and then coated it with bag balm. Let the SW dry first. I found a hydrophylic white moisturising cream and added my silver water to it. If it is a food alergy it should respond to Benadryl skin cream. Only as a test for a few days though. If it does clear up then you know you have either a food allergy or a laundry detergent sensitivity. If you use disposalbles try placing a plain paper towel between bottom and diaper. Let me know.

  4. I'm SO sorry!
    Been there!

    If you have the resources (read:$$) to try the NDs recommended, I'd say, DO!

    If you are seriously considering that it may be related to Leaky Gut and/or food allergies, I'd HIGHLY recommend the book I'm reading right now: Autism and Pervasive Developmental Disorder. Seriously. There is some VERY eye-opening information in there about candida, leaky gut, food allergies/intolerances, how they can be related, and how to cure it all.

    The other resource is - just do a search on there for 'leaky gut.' In fact, you might do a search on there for the diaper rash - you might find more solutions that we haven't considered yet.

    Will also be praying for Maggy's butt. :)

  5. Oh dear Sarah - I'm so sorry you are going through this and I can totally relate to the pain of skin issues!!!
    I tried posting a huge reply but it sadly disappeared when I hit post so I guess it had timed out because I came back to it after a while. I want to send you some fantastic salve but it seems the company has closed...I have an email in to the owner though. I have so much to say on this subject I should really just talk to you on the phone!
    talk to you soon sweetie!

  6. NO!
    Amy, you should post it here for the benefit of all!
    (When you can do so w/out timing out again, that is...)


  7. okay, will do, but can't be tonight.

  8. No great advice from me, just empathy!

    When Joy had her horrible rash for 3 months, open sores, etc., I too remember feeling like my Pediatrician was just trying to get me to buy more prescriptions or that he was just "poo-poo-ing" me! ;-D

    That is when I began reading more about Candida and decided on a whim to try an extreme diet change for me and take a very high dosage of probiotics. Joy was only 8 months though, so her main source of nutrition was still breastmilk. When I did those things, her rash began subsiding within 3 days.

    But still, I think prayer and trusting should be our first response. I know for me, I became a little too zealous about natural stuff, and sharing my opinions, and believing sugar was THE devil! It's funny, because now, we can't afford all the natural and organic and supplements and I think I worry less about our health! I can only pray and trust that God will care for our insides in this season.

    I will pray for peace of mind for you and divine wisdom to come your way as well.

  9. So Sarah, wow, you have tried a lot of stuff. Great job mommy! Do not beat yourself up, any one of those could have been the ticket, so it was worth a try.
    I got the recipe from the owner for how to make my favorite salve (heals super fast and most important to kids it doesn't sting!), but we'll see if I can do it -- it's an all natural herb thing and I've never made a salve or soap before (and have to order the herbs too).
    Some tips: quit using wipes if you haven't already - they sting and just irritate skin further. I know it's a pain, but use lukewarm water over the sink or bathtub for every diaper change to wash her off, even just pee. Then keep doing what you've been doing by lathering it up with something sealing...I'd use plain shea butter if I didn't have my salve. Tiffany can get you some from Frontier I think.
    Acidophilus has been known to cause diarrhea in my kids, but for some reason a combination of different types of probiotics doesn't do this. You can get a combo probiotic in one capsule (Tummy Tuneup from is what we use, but there are some at New Seasons too)...squeeze it on the seal and pull it open and dump one into one or two meals of Maggy's a day. Oh NS has chewable kids ones too (but maybe it's only acidophilus...can't remember). It really could be very helpful for her situation, but even if it doesn't change the pooing amounts, it will not hurt her and can only help her digestion and overall health. I like having my kids (and me/hubby) take a probiotic a day (when I remember) just like a multivitamin.

    I don't think you mentioned if her poo was abnormally hard or loose, but that could be a clue to the puzzle. If it is normal, but just really frequent, that is strange. Was her weight in the normal range...and in the same range as it used to be? If she isn't gaining and dropped percentiles drastically, it could be something like a parasite/worm that is eating her food and not letting her digest it. I know that's sick and who knows where she would have gotten it, but I've heard of it in someone else before and that's the only thing I can think of if the stool isn't abnormal. (I'm kind of assuming with the frequency that it's on the loose side...and you are doing the BRAT thing right?)

    I'd definitely look into food allergies though. If she has one then it is probably something so pervasive in her food that you haven't been able to notice a trend of the problem increasing when she eats such and such. Something common in many foods, like for us it was dairy, or maybe it's a wheat/gluten thing, or some type of sugars or preservatives thing. I don't know. But you and her are in so much pain, I'd say it is absolutely worth the effort to try cutting all dairy because I've since read and heard many times how it's one of the hardest things to digest. Well, of course I'm biased on the dairy and believe me I had NO desire to try that when I first heard it and I'm guessing knowing your family how hard it would be to not eat cheese and milk. But I can tell you that it is doable and you get increasingly used to working around it. Of course it could be something completely niece is deathly allergic to peanuts, which also caused some rashes before it caused her throat to swell. The point is that many food allergies have negative influence on skin.

    So anyway, part of what I wanted to write was that I can completely relate with the doctor saga. It isn't's the medical establishment. In the 5.5 years Simona went to the same pediatrician he never once told us to try a food allergy solution for her eczema. She continued to suffer; he continued to prescribe topical treatments. I wouldn't even bother starting the steroids they are giving you. I take it back, out of desperation I would try it. But if you aren't seeing the problem solved in a week, forget it. And even if it gets better, if it starts getting worse again or gets halfway better but then doesn't keep improving, forget it too. In my experience, steroids (anything with an -one on the end of the name) never solved skin problems, they only help it mildly for a time, and then your skin seems to build a tolerance to them. They aren't the healthiest thing so to me if they aren't a solution, who wants to put that stuff on your skin to be absorbed into your bloodstream for your entire life (I say entire life because they just create a dependence on them without ever solving the real root of the problem)? The thing I can't believe is that S's ped never once heard about food allergies helping eczema? He'd rather see her suffer than mention it as a possibility? It's like the medical establishment is not *allowed* to say anything a naturopath would say. I've heard that Dr. Ed Hoffman-Smith's wife (both are naturopaths on the east side) said about eczema that 90% of the cases are due to a food allergy. The dermatologists and all the family type doctors all do the same exact approach with eczema...start with steroids. This has been since my mom took me in as a baby with it(she recently told me), if not for decades before. In 34 years nothing has changed on that front? Oh they came out with some new different approach topicals like Elidel (not steroids but immunosuppressants). However, NONE of the dozen doctors I or my kids have seen in these decades have heard of the food allergy possibility? I find that impossible to believe. They are simply bound to the system that makes money for pharmaceuticals and office visits. Sad. And I'm sorry you are having the same issues of just feeling like you are getting nowhere with them and no help from them. Been there. But I'm so glad you are going to get a fresh perspective.

    I will do my best to get you the wonder-salve. :) And pray for relief . . . for you both.

  10. btw, Benadryl did not work at all on our skin before we took the dairy out, so I'm not sure about that being a true test.
    I would also definitely NOT use anything/lotion on her bottom that has a fragrance . . . they always seem to sting and can further irritate. (Except calendula, lavendar...natural herbs like that are okay.)
    Pat and dab her bottom dry after rubbing. Getting the sealant on within 3 minutes after washing is supposed to be the key time frame.

  11. I had a similar issue with my son, but we (my pediatrician and I) didn't spend a lot of time on the diaper rash, we spent more time on why is he pooping so much (5,6,7 times a day). Pediatrician then sent us to a specialist (pediatric gastro endo something or other). Lots of tests that all said no known cause for all the poop, so I said, 'What about allergies?' and she said, 'Maybe'. Maybe? maybe? all this and you haven't even considered allergies. 'Well, you have to go to an allergist for that'. On to allergist... turns out no good way to pinpoint allergies. Easiest way to diagnose allergies, eliminate suspected food (ie Dr says just eliminate food). Hardest way to determine allergies, eliminate suspected food (ie Mom tries to eliminate said food). A blood test along the way had suggested milk may be a problem, so we eliminated milk. We because I was still breastfeeding. And eliminated (what? McD's french fries have milk?). And eliminated (what? soy yogurt has milk in it?). And finally all the milk was gone. And .... poops down to 1-2 times a day and diaper rash gone - within a week I think. Although I don't wish food elimination on anyone, if it works, it is worth it. Pediatrician can have the blood test run for top 8 allergens if you want to try this and need to know which food to try eliminating. We added milk back about 9 months later and have had no other problems. While we were running all the tests, no wipes (Viva papertowels with water) and Aquaphor seemed the least irritating on his rashy skin.


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