Friday, February 18, 2011

Poor little guy

So, I think baby E is sick. His first sick - boo :(  Not sure what's wrong, but he just isn't acting like himself. There's the lack of sleeping (which has been getting progressively worse since Sunday night), lots of fussiness (which is so not like him at all - we haven't even seen a single smile in 24hrs), not wanting to be put down at all (now, those of you who know him may say this is normal for him, however, he'd gotten good about playing in the exersaucer or on his belly on the floor for a good 10-15min stretch; right now he won't tolerate it even 10-15seconds), eating weird (he's not missing a meal thus far, but he'll nurse for a few seconds, pull off, fuss, then repeat), and he's a little congested. He's also spitting up more than usual (he rarely spits up at all), though I think this may be related to us being out of breastmilk, so he's back on formula (til tomorrow when we pick up a new batch!).

All that said, I'm afraid he may have an ear infection. Poor little guy. I hated to leave him at the sitter's this morning, though I really had to come into work for a little while. I've made him an appointment with the pediatrician for noon. Hopefully we'll figure out what's going on and help the little guy feel better.

But, if it is an ear infection, that brings about a whole different set of issues. I can't remember if I've written about this before, but the kid had a couple of ear infections his first few years. With all (there were 3 or 4, I think), we were already at the doctor for something (usually a well child visit) when she noticed that he had it. He had exhibited no signs/symptoms of the infection  at all.  The first time, though my gut told me otherwise, I went ahead and let her convince me to give him the antibiotics. Yes, it was cleared up in 10 days. However, after that, I did a lot of research about ear infections and antibiotic use in general.

What I found was this (and no, I wish I had the citations to give you, but I don't right now) - antibiotic use in the first year of life increases risk of allergies and asthma in particular (I've mentioned the kid has asthma, and to the best of our knowledge, no one else in his birth family does); frequent antibiotic use is related to the development of "superbugs" which necessitate even stronger antibiotics that kill off all the bacteria in our bodies, even the good kinds; and, most surprisingly to me, nearly all ear infections (80+%) will resolve regardless of antibiotic use (i.e. the antibiotics aren't what cure most ear infections, they heal on their own).

So, we refused the antibiotics on the rest of the kid's ear infections, and they all cleared up beautifully without them and in the same amount of time (and he never developed any symptoms of discomfort at all). But, baby E is different. Maybe. Maybe not. I don't know. Well, what is different is that he is obviously feeling awful! And I want to do whatever we need to to make the pitiful little thing feel better. But, that still doesn't mean that antibiotics would necessarily make him feel any better any faster. And, what's kind of funny about this, is that I don't know that he even has an ear infection so I'm going though all this worry and anxiety about whether or not to give him an antibiotic that hasn't even been prescribed.

Today's lesson - seems like I ought to remind myself of one I posted only a few days ago. There's no point in worrying about everything. You waste time and energy that you'll never get back. Yeah. That's what I'll keep reminding myself at least. I am finding, however, that this is easier said than done when it comes to your kids.


Myra said...

I agree on all issues, poor baby, and yes alot of ear infection ARE viral...a good peds can tell by looking and a f/u visit if needed...hope he feels better soon!!!

Anonymous said...

I know this is an old post, and I haven't finished reading the rest of your blog so you may have already gotten this advice, but I wanted to mention this before I forgot (and we are coming back into cold and flu season)-
have you thought about taking the babe in for chiropractc care? ICPA4Kids (international chiropractic pediatric association) has some great info on chiro as preventative care for ear infections and as an alternative to antibiotics.... They also have a directory of pediatric chiropractors so you can search for one in your area.
I do appologize if someone has suggested this already or if the is a path you have already found- i'm finishing up reading you blog tonight!
Ps- I love it- your blog I mean, not chiro- although I do love chiro.

Becky said...

Anon - we have been considering it, though haven't actually followed through yet. We know of a good one some friends use. Why haven't we yet? Well, mostly because besides this one incident, he's never really been sick. Maybe next time? The thought of doing it in a preventative way feels overwhelming - like I've already got so much going on that one more may push me over the edge. And I'm so glad you're enjoying my little blog :)