Common symptoms in children - the environmental approach
Very often I do not have a clue about which symptoms are caused by what factors. I just apply the general environmental approach to the problem and it usually sorts itself out.
The general physical approach (I would not presume to advise on psychological aspects) is:
- Take vitamins and minerals: see "nutritional supplements".
- Eat as healthy and varied a diet as possible: see "Stoneage Diet".
- Make sure adequate and quality sleep occurs every night: see "sleep".
- Regular exercise is essential: see "exercise".
- Do a good chemical clean up: remove smellies, perfumes, air fresheners, see "chemical clean up".
Exclude serious pathology
If these basic essentials do not bring about results, it is probably wise to consult a doctor to exclude serious pathology, do urine testing for infection (multistix) and maybe do blood tests for anaemia and thyroid function (insist on a Free T4, Free T3 and TSH).
Colic in babies: dairy allergy (follow link to colicky babies at bottom of page).
Catarrhal children: dairy allergy.
Constipation: dairy allergy, dehydration, lack of probiotics, lack of exercise. See Constipation
Behaviour problems and poor scholastic performance: - diets high insugar, refinced carbohydrate and fruit juices (follow link to hyperactivity at bottom of page).
Recurrent viral infections: allergy and nutritional deficiencies. See Viral infections - avoid them and treat them aggressively
Failure to thrive: wheat allergy and/or coeliac disease. Any food allergy or nutritional deficiency.
Headaches, "abdominal migraine", "growing pains", "grumbling appendix": think food allergy.
Fatigue: I would treat fatigue in children exactly the same as in adults.
Look for nutritional deficiencies
Hair analysis is not a very good test of nutritional status, but it is at least painless! It gives some idea of overall micronutrient status and is reasonably accurate for manganese, copper, selenium and chromium. If zinc is low then that is probably correct, but severe zinc deficiency slows hair growth and gives misleading results. Toxic minerals (eg. lead, mercury, cadmium, arsenic and aluminium) may or may not show up. Hair analysis does not exclude heavy metal poisoning. If in doubt, do a urine challenge test ie measure levels of heavy metals (mercury, lead, cadmium, aluminium in order of liklihood) before and after a zinc and selenium dose. These minerals displace bivalent and trivalent heavy metals which then show up in urine.
For other problems, see the appropriate section.
- Toxic Elements screen - urine sample
- Urine analysis
- Thyroid profile: free T3, free T4 and TSH
- Hair Mineral Analysis
- Colicky babies
- Cow's milk allergy
- Do A Good Chemical Clean-Up: chemicals make you fat and fatigued!
- Viral infections
- Hyperactivity - on the go all the time, no peace!
- Nutritional Supplements
- Enzyme Potentiated Desensitisation (EPD)
- Practitioners of Ecological Medicine
- Stone Age Diet - this is a diet which we all should follow
- Sleep is vital for good health
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