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Chronic cough & cold - could this be allergies? Homeopathic treatment makes sense?

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

My 3.5 year old son has been going to a preschool since he was a little over 2. After the first few months of quiet, he started getting cough and cold almost every month, and then every 2-3 weeks. It is sometimes accompanied by fever but not always. He is allergic to antibiotics so we are seeing a homeopathic doctor. The doctor suggests it is just preschool germs and that he will grow out of it. Sometimes he suggest giving him the Pulsatilla remedy.


However my concern is that this has been going on for nearly a year now without any signs of relief. He pants/breathes heavily after running for just 2-3 minutes. He snores and has trouble breathing due to stuffed nose at night. He also always complains of feet ache (near ankles) and sometimes hands and head ache as well. The doctor ruled this out as growing pains but can they last for more than 7-8 months? He hasn't grown all that well either. He doesn't eat unless forced to and seems to be losing his interest in food.


Could this be a sign of pollen or food allergy? I don't see any rash or severe symptoms for any food. Is it wise to continue advice of the homeopathic doctor? Is this just a phase or am i overly concerned about his shortness of breath? He has also always been on the tiny end of the spectrum, weighing less than 5 percentile. Currently he is just 28 pounds and I need to do something about it fast. Height is around 50 - 60 percentile and other development is great. He is just a very smart tiny kid. I feel extremely sorry for him when he says with a sad face "mommy I always have this cough and cold, what to do?" :(



Would appreciate any helpful and kind suggestions.


Thanks much in advance,




post #2 of 7

I would definitely get a second opinion at this point.  My daughter did go through "one of those years" where she just seemed to be getting colds all the time (and several ending up with complications, including pneumonia once.)  It was a miserable year.  She did grow out of it, and yes she has some environmental allergies though not severe.


It sounds like this is interfering with his quality of life.  He might have pre-asthma or (?) chronic bronchitis or any number of things going on here.  Or maybe not.... but I think your HD is being dismissive and not reassuring like he must imagine he is.  Follow your gut.  I did with my other daughter, and I was right, DH and the ARNP etc all saying it was normal and age appropriate and guess what?  It wasn't. 


So, your HD could be right, but this needs a look with fresh eyes.



post #3 of 7

After 6 months of a cough that would not go away with the absence of any other "illness" things (fever, runny nose) we went to our allergist.  After 2 days on an inhaler, no more cough.  Wish I had taken him to the allergist MUCH sooner (he had been to the ped. several times for this!)


Good luck!

post #4 of 7

I agree with PP about getting a second opinion. My son sees both "conventional" doctors (pediatrician & allergist) as well as alternative (homeopath/naturopath) as he has both food allergies and food intolerances that really affected his health. He's almost three now, and he does take a constitutional homeopathic remedy, and we use other remedies for acute situations. However, when he was younger, he had breathing issues (wheezing and chronic cough) and was sick all the time and we did use nebulizer treatments as prescribed by his pediatrician/allergist which we eventually were able to reduce and phase out. He does not test positive for environmental allergies yet, but our allergist says these things can develop over time so we are monitoring it. The homeopath and naturopath really helped to build up his general immune system and he is pretty healthy now but it took time.


So I would say follow your gut and seek other opinions because what you are describing could be caused by many different things, including allergies (food or environmental) and general problems with the immune system. It does seem strange that the homeopath is dismissing all your concerns because they are usually very thorough and look at the whole picture. The right homeopathic treatment should make positive changes that you can see. Breathing problems that last that long don't sound normal to me and it is clearly affecting your DS.





post #5 of 7

Momo 123 - I am in Astoria, NY and my 3 yo is having difficulties with a chronic cough/wheezing too. The Pediatrician has put her on two inhalers and we NEVER seem to get off them so I took her to the chiropractor. The pediatrician classified it as cold induced asthma last Nov/Dec. The cough hasn't really gone away since then, which is when she started pre-school. She sounds like a smoker when she coughs. She's been out of school since the end of June and this chronic cough still is there. The doctors just say give her the puffs but I don't want to do this everyday!! Steroids are ok once in awhile but everyday seems to much especially when it doesn't seem to go away.


I take her to the chiropractor and he has taken her off wheat, dairy, corn and grains. This seemed to help a lot in the beginning but the cough is still there so I'm wondering if it's seasonal allergies now that winter is over? He tests the food by putting it on her back still in the packaging, which I find hard to believe that this is an effective way of testing foods. I want to take her to an allergist but the one I called was saying that they might put her on benedryll (sp?) and I was trying to do it more natural if possible. Can you recommend an allergist/naturopath (do they take insurance??) She can't blow her nose so I try to suck it out but sometimes can't get anything out and she fights me on this so it's awful. Any help or suggestions, would be appreciated.


Thank you!

post #6 of 7
Originally Posted by babygs View PostHe tests the food by putting it on her back still in the packaging, which I find hard to believe that this is an effective way of testing foods.

This is NOT an effective way to test for allergies.  A board certified allergist is who would test for allergies via skin or blood testing.  This alternative testing is not a good idea because they often end up "reacting" to things that there really isn't a problem with.  Even the allergists testing is only 50% accurate for a positive test result.  


Good luck trying to find a practitioner and figuring out what's going on. It's so hard when they can't tell us and we have no way to help :(

post #7 of 7

No allergist is going to "put her on Benadryl".  They might recommend Zyrtec or something, but no one is going to force the issue on you.  It sounds like your little one is suffering.  At some point you have to weigh the benefits and risks, and it sounds like at this point the benefits of the daily steroids are more important.  I'm not a doctor, though, nor your dd's mom.  I would agree with you on this-- I would absolutely not be content to give my kid an inhaler for a cough that lasted half the year without digging deep for answers.


So, now you have the ped's opinion, the chiro's opinion.  You need an allergist's opinion.  


I agree, the chiro's testing methods are hokey to me.  My dd sees an allergist, I see an allergist.  Sorry for the buzzkill, but I just have no faith in those methods you described.

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