Hello Herb Lovers- This Q & A comes from a client in my home town in Colorado regarding her son and his eczema. They had great results with the Wonder Balm and we did some consulting about her sons' health issues. Maybe you'll find some gems in here or inspiration to help you feel your best!
Hi Yarrow -
Q: My son (Isak) wants to know if you have any advice about baths. He needs to take baths frequently (ideally daily) to get rid of the flaking skin (and smell!) The baths are fine; the problem is when he gets out - his skin immediately starts itching and burning. I apply the Wonder Balm as quickly as I can, but it's never fast enough. In your opinion, should we try applying the Wonder Balm before he gets in the bath?
Background note: We tried seeking advice at Children's Hospital's various clinics (dermatologists, allergists & asthma specialists) but they all gave us conflicting info on baths & other treatments. For the last couple of years we've relied on Dr. Donn (the acupuncturist), who provides his various herb teas. This has worked great for controlling Isak's asthma, but on the itching - not so much. Any advice you might have is welcome. Tx!
Gael & Isak,
It is hard to know exactly what is going on with Isaks' particular case without doing a formal consultation but here are my ideas about eczema... and with the asthma in your case as you've mentioned.
Asthma & eczema are thought to both be allergic reactions to something. In adults, when someone gets either one of these things I treat the liver because the idea is that it has become clogged with allergy inducing toxins and is having trouble processing these things.
When these symptoms are present in a child the first thing is to remove the foods that generally may cause allergy; dairy & gluten being the two main ones and then branching out to strawberries, chocolate, soy ,peanuts, eggs, fried foods and any processed or chemical foods which contain preservatives and artificial colors, sweeteners, etc. I realize this is hard to do in a childs' (or adults for that matter) diet.
Does it feel good to have the skin lubricated? If so, and it stops the skin from burning just find whatever oil works, could be olive oil and add that to the bath so the drying does not cause burning. I mentioned in the last e-mail calendula oil, almond oil may work, avocado oil, argon oil, there are lots of oils out there that may help with the after bath burn.
I have recently watched a webinar with a man named Daniel Vitalis giving a lecture on Wild Water and its many benefits. He introduced to me the idea that the human body these days has become a sterile environment because of all the chlorine and other chemicals we are receiving through our water supply, even if we only shower in it. He suggests that we need fermented foods, live spring water and tons of probiotics to create the happy, ALIVE, ecosystem inside our bodies that we need to thrive. There is also the idea out there that people who have dermatitis of any kind do not have enough HCL which is the acid that our bodies use for digestion. Does Isak have trouble digesting? Perhaps a supplement of HCL would help, or the fermented foods would also help in this case.
Psychosomatically, burning is an anger representation and the flaking, blistering and otherwise is self hatred pouring out of the skin. These may be addressed spiritually.
Coffee enemas are absolutely magic. Dr. Max Gerson whose therapy works for all chronic and degenerative ailments uses them and I have done many. You may try that and see if it has a positive affect.
COFFEE ENEMA: 3 TBLS ground organic coffee in 1 quart of clean water
Boil for 3 minutes, let sit for 15, strain and then introduce to colon through enema bag (add more cool water if too hot or to bring back to quart after evaporation). To administer, lay on the right side and introduce coffee to the colon with an enema bag, try to hold the solution for up to 15 minutes. I generally take a bath so I don't have to lay on the cold bathroom floor. Then when you can no longer hold it, release.
The effects are numerous but some of the best things are; the coffee dilates your pancreas and gallbladder allowing them to open up and literally pour out all the bile and toxins that are in there, which in turn promotes cleansing of the liver and kidneys. There are no negative side effects, sometimes a slight caffeine tummy, butterflies can occur but generally only lasts about 15 minutes. It may be worth a try to do one per day for a week or so and see what it does for Isak. After the enema it is a good idea to have a green juice; kale, parsley, broccoli, celery, cucumber & green apple with a small piece of lemon to reintroduce any minerals lost in the enema process.
Do you do any juicing and have you tried dietary changes as far as allergy causing foods?
This is all that comes to mind for me without the personal background of Isak, I hope this helps, let me know as you progress.
Thank you so much for your advice, Yarrow! What a wealth of information.
A little more background on us is in order - we did have Isak tested for allergens, with mostly contradictory results. The clear results showed tree nut & peanut allergies, which has been proven repeatedly when he has accidentally ingested some - in spite of our vigilance sometimes we still miss a nut ingredient in granola or something similar. It has helped that Isak has learned to read ingredients lists himself, and we've learned to always ask about homemade baked goods. I've stressed that people who don't live with nut allergies don't think about nut allergies - it's nothing to take personally. As he's gotten older, Isak's learned to notice tingling in his mouth as the first sign of nut reaction and to tell me, even before I notice the swelling around his mouth. Benadryl stops the reaction but there's usually a couple of hours of stomach upset.
As far as dairy and gluten go, I noticed I was having dairy reactions while pregnant with Isak (I've only had the one pregnancy), so he's only had rice milk, and for the last year only coconut milk. We were in Southern California when Isak was born, and our first pediatrician was Dr. Bill Sears, who convinced me to breastfeed as long as possible and delay solid foods for at least six months, to reduce allergies & increase immunities.
I've suspected GMO and food-additive issues for some time, and we've eliminated most wheat, rice, soy & corn for the past year, as well as anything with color numbers and ingredients we can't pronounce easily. That's reduced Isak's excessive mucus & most of my abdominal pain.
As you've mentioned, sugar & kids are hard to separate, though we do keep it to a minimum at home. Unfortunately that message wasn't being reinforced at Isak's school, where good behavior was being rewarded frequently with candy and other treats. That wasn't the only reason I started homeschooling, but it did provide the "last straw."
Re chlorine, we're both sensitive, which usually keeps us out of swimming pools and hotels. It was a problem when we rented a house in CO, but the house we bought about 8 years ago is on well & septic. We already drink & cook with bottled water - I'll have to do some research to learn more about live & wild water.
I'm sure I'll get a lot of resistance from Isak regarding any efforts at enema, as I have with nasal cleansing. I may try it myself, though, to see what happens.
Dr. Donn has asked me about Isak's stress, which is hard for me to evaluate, given that most of the stress I notice has to do with his scratching. I'll share this with Dr. Donn so we can talk about it more, as well as your other recommendations. Meanwhile, your Wonder Balm continues to be very helpful - and the more frequently we apply it, the more benefit it seems to provide. I'll try some olive oil in Isak's bath tonight & see if that helps. Now it's time to practice our medieval sword-play (martial arts class) - then bath will be welcome. Thank you!