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The Allergy Question Part I: It Begins

Updated on January 2, 2013

Here's the Deal

So here's the deal. I'm 26 and have a bunch of minor things wrong with me. But these minor things shouldn't be popping up for me just yet, in fact, I probably shouldn't have to deal with this stuff for another twenty years or so. But as it is, I have two bad knees that ache at seemingly random times. I have tendinitis in my left shoulder and have suffered two back injuries, both back injuries and shoulder issues are down to L and I claims at my former job due to lack of proper training or support to ensure the job is done safely and correctly.

I used to have severe ear infections when I was a baby. I had tubes in my ears. When I recently went in to see my naturopath, she cooed at how scarred the insides of my ears were from them (news to me!). I was a swimmer growing up, I spent eight years on the swim team. I finally gave it up because I was getting too competitive and stuck up, and realized the ugliness that was growing in me. I put it to an end. Part of me misses it, but not the competition. But, when you're swimming in school, isn't the competition the point?

When I was a swimmer, I had a hard time diving. If I went more than a foot or so underwater, my ears would hurt horrendously, and make awful squeaky noises in them, like Styrofoam rubbing on itself. The hurt would travel through my sinuses and down my throat. This worked to my advantage as a swimmer: it forced me to learn to not dive too deeply at the start of a race and not to turn too deeply.

A couple years ago, I lived with a roommate that had a cat that attacked the rat on my shoulder (don't worry! The rat was a pet!). When she did so, her claw was lodged in my right hand. She tugged at it and finally got it out, not even tearing the skin. It hurt, far more than a cat scratch should, but she didn't leave a mark. There was only the slightest puncture which could have been mistaken for a tiny freckle and I not known better.

By the following day, the ring and middle finger on my right hand had gone numb, on the surface. My fingers and wrist were experiencing a lot of pain if I tried to do anything with my right hand, and sometimes even when I wasn't doing anything with it. I finally went to the hospital about it after a week. After ten minutes I emerged with a $500 later, a suggestion I take Aleve for the pain and the wise words of "Maybe God will let you have the feeling back".

After another week or so, the feeling came back into my hand. However since then my skin has been tough between those two fingers, on the verge of being scaly but not quite getting there. Then this winter it broke. Eczema has spread over both fingers, reaching toward my wrist and down to the palm of my hand. The itch is maddening. I have tried everything. I make salves with all the things that should help, yet none of them do. I put lotion on, but it does nothing.

Finally, I went to a naturopath with all my complains, and she suggested a food allergy. Staring on the first of the year, I am go to without dairy or gluten. I will re-introduce one of them after a couple month and see how my body reacts. I will continue on without the other for another month and repeat the same thing. If it is neither of these things then we will go on to see what else it might be.

This is my story.

The Goal

My goal is not just to find out what I may or may not be allergic to so that my knees will stop hurting and my hand can return to normal function, but I want to be more alert. I would like to be able to wake up bright and early and have the energy enough to get through the day. I would like to go along my life minus the brain fog which I seem to have accrued over time. I would like to lose this extra weight that I have certainly put on over the holidays. I would like not crave everything that will give me a heart attack when it gets to be that monthly time.

I know a lot of this is down to me. I understand that. I can't blame all of that on a food allergy. But it can be the first step.


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    • Wacky Mummy profile image

      Wacky Mummy 4 years ago from UK

      Useful hub - very well written :)

    • mrblueishmouvesky profile image

      mrblueishmouvesky 4 years ago

      Hey, I and my father both suffered from eczma, he used to get it on his heel and stratch it so badly there was constantly large red rash often spotted with blood, I'd never really had a problem till my Mum died and the came out with really bad patches on elbows and hands, at it's worst had to wrap my hand in bandages to stop the bleeding. It got better though always seemed to bother to a lesser or greater degree. Until I cut out dairy, suddenly it vanished, I suggested it to my Father and he switched to soya milk and his 30+ years rash on his ankle just dissapeared too.

      Anyway, the point of the post was, I and my dad do drink milk again now however know that if the eczma returns to noticeable level can just reduce / switch to alternatives so it potentially dosen't have to be a total cut-out. Plus stress seems to be a major factor, I'm not sure if it's just because one scratches more when stressed or a cause. Anyway good luck and hope one of the things you tried sorted it :)

    • greencha profile image

      greencha 4 years ago from UK

      Hello ThompsonPen. Well I know Pure Organic Calandular (English Marigold)cream-is excellent for skin eruptions,I found it so. Another possible allergy trigger could be wheat. Have you thought of getting a pendulum and dowsing your food ,you will be surprised what it may tell you.. lol Greencha