Saturday, February 9, 2008

Dont Fear Fever!

When my oldest was one and I was quite pregnant with #2, he got the flu. He had a high temperature, was lethargic, etc. Thats when I first learned the truth about fevers.... Id always thought of fever as the disease and believed that you should take tylenol or advil to bring it down. It turns out I was wrong, on both accounts. I consider this information some of the most valuable Ive learned as a mother - and fascinating!

Fever is a natural response TO an infection and in fact a very good sign that the immune system is working properly.

My son was very ill again, soon after that first bought with the flu. The first time I gave him tylenol and/or advil consistently. His fever would break, he'd feel better for a few hours, run around and play, then konk back out and his fever would return. The second time I let the fever run its course (both times it was very high, over 102). He slept more and got better faster the second time. (I believe he had the flu twice) By breaking the fever over and over I was not only taking away a natural defense but then he was expending energy that he was actually too sick to expend.

An article from reports on an experiment done with iguanas. The iguanas were purposely made sick with bacteria. They found that raising their body temperature with heat lamps helped them fight off the illness. The iguanas were given the choice to heat up their bodies - 12 of the 13 chose to lay under the lamp. The iguana that didnt, died.

Brain Damage: If a fever goes over 106, the fever doesnt respond to tylenol/advil or the child is unable to be hydrated, these are serious situations and you should call your Dr. BUT. Not treating a fever will not cause to rise indefinitely and put your child at risk for brain damage. Dr Greene reports (as do other sources) that brain damage can only occur from having a fever of 107+ for an extended period of time. Only VERY rare and very serious illnesses can cause a fever that high as well as sun stroke and poisoning.

Febrile Seizures are seizures caused by a quick rise in temperature, not necessarily a high fever. So a quick rise from 99 to 101 can bring it on just as a rise from 101 to 103. Febrile seizures affect 5-10% of children. They are scaryto see as parents but NOT harmful and they do not cause long-lasting effects.

Conclusion: We dont need to fear fevers. My automatic, ingrained reponse when my children get a fever is still to panic. But then I remind myself to rejoice - their immune systems are working well!!!!! The most important thing when your child is sick is to keep them HYDRATED. Its best to avoid sugary drinks because it lowers their immune system but sometimes they get so sick that any liquid is good. The worst thing is to end up in the hospital for an IV and be at risk of catching something new.

Leave the fever alone and let it do its job. The only reason you need to use a fever-reducing medication is if your child is too achy/miserable to sleep or eat/drink. This is for their comfort and not to get rid of the fever. The fever is on your side! :)

Ill close with a list of signs to watch for. Many of these are signs of dehydration or a more serious illness (stiff neck indicates meningitis).

Call your doctor if your child has any of these warning signs
Changes in behavior
Constant vomiting or diarrhea
Dry mouth
Earache or pulling at ears
Fever comes and goes over several days
High-pitched crying
Not hungry
Severe headache
Skin rash
Sore or swollen joints
Sore throat
Stiff neck
Stomach pain
Swelling of the soft spot on the head
Unresponsive or limp
Wheezing or problems breathing

Why do you think we all have it ingrained in us that fevers need medicine - thats right, its all about the $$ M-O-N-E-Y $$. Booooo and hisssss for the drug companies and another example of over-medicating America to make billions of dollars.

I hope this is encouraging. Its one less thing for us to worry about! There is a lot of illness going around at this time of year. We need to be alert and pay close attention to our children when they are sick but we dont have to depend on sugar/chemical/dye-filled meds. My second son woke up from his nap with a fever. I gave him a lot to drink (water with Vit C and orange Stevia) and had him rest and he was running around and playing by bedtime. Hopefully thats the end of it! I praise the Lord that we are so fearfully and wonderfully made - He has given us the gift of bodies that are self-healing! Amazing!

Green Pans

We stopped using Teflon awhile ago but I found myself sneaking out my skillets to cook eggs in. I hated cooking eggs in my stainless steel pans because for $4 a dozen for organic free-roaming/range eggs, I didnt want half of them sticking to the pan!

I saw these GREEN PANS on an infommercial and carefully considered them. My mom ended up getting them for me (ok, yes, she spoils us!) to try out and I really like them. You can cook perfect eggs with no oil (i always add coconut oil anyways for the benefits), you can brown, carmelize, etc and have no trouble cleaning them. They can handle much higher temps which means you can cook things on high without the coating breaking down - unlike Teflon which shouldnt be used any higher than medium. You CANT use metal utensils on them which the user guide clearly states (some of the reviews below claim it scratches - yes, of course, if you use metal!)

They are PTFE (bad for you) and PFOA (bad for the environment) - free which makes them much healthier than Teflon. There is still a risk that they harbor something else unhealthy but my guess is its still healthier than Teflon. So I now cook my eggs in them every day and dont waste an ounce :) I have noticed they are a little less non-stick while the pan is warming but once the eggs get hot it is fine.

They are often featured on HSN (see reviews at this link - some are good, some are horrible. Ive had no trouble with burn spots or cleaning them and I use mine every day)

There is no garuantee they are safe so this is NOT a recommendation - just sharing something that Ive chosen to use for our family :)

Stevia Flavors

My mom bought me EVERY flavor that SweetLeaf Stevia comes in so we've had fun trying them out. Since my kids never have juice its fun for them to have "stevia water" - yummy, healthy, and no sugar!

Vanilla Creme has been a longtime favorite of mine in coffee. English toffee is also good in coffe and I imagine it would be good in some healthy cookies too.

The kids love the grape and orange. I just put a few drops in their cup so it lasts forever! We'll definitely be using the "lemon drop" this summer to make lemonade or lemon slushies - a hot TX summer favorite at our house :) (even the big kids I make them for dont know they dont have sugar!!!)

I think these are great for summer, something sweet (and safe) and keeps them hydrated :)

btw - on Amazon the great deal on Regular Stevia is really hard to find on their search. Its basically two-for-the-price-of-one. HERE is a direct link.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

US Newborn Fatality Rate

I will be honest and say I am a huge proponent of natural I am many other natural things of course. I praise God for the medical technology that exists for those that TRULY *need* it and then say that otherwise I believe that a natural vaginal birth is the safest and healthiest route for mom and baby. I have had two drug-free births and we hope to have a waterbirth with this baby, due in August, at home (!!!). So Im going to post now and then about natural childbirth - its not about being "better" or getting a medal or showing off but about doing things the safest and healthiest way possible. FEAR is a big factor in the US - so many women now elect to have a csection becaues they are afraid of labor .... this is a tradegdy in our country.

Article from CNN - US has second highest infant deat rate in the industrialized world.

American babies are three times more likely to die in their first month as
children born in Japan, and newborn mortality is 2.5 times higher in the United
States than in Finland, Iceland or Norway
, Save the Children researchers

"The United States has more neonatologists and neonatal intensive care
beds per person than Australia, Canada and the United Kingdom, but its newborn
rate is higher than any of those countries," said the annual State of the
World's Mothers report.

so all this begs the question - why????

maybe because Dr.s (immorally in my humble opinion) allow women to elect to have a csection for non-medical reasons, schedule csections at 39 or even 38 weeks and because of the constant PUSH to induce labor.

I believe God has created our bodies to birth our hand-crafted baby, usually, with absolutely no intervention or "help".

Pregnancy is not a medical condition - its a natural, beautiful, gift.

what will it take for Drs to stop putting God and His Creations on a timetable - to stop playing god themselves????