Choosing the Right Medical Care for Your Child
It’s perfectly normal for children to catch a cold, cough or the flu occasionally. And when given the correct natural treatment, they should recover quickly, easily and completely. It is not normal for children to get sick frequently, catch every bug that is going around, or endure long recovery times. It is not normal to suffer from ongoing mucus, congestion, coughs, or recurrent ear, sinus or upper respiratory infections. And it is certainly not normal for children to require antibiotics every time they catch something.
Too often in my medical clinic, I see children who were treated by allopathic medical doctors but continue to suffer recurring ear, sinus or upper respiratory infections. Each of these infections had previously been treated with antibiotics, but within a month or two, another infection would appear. The adverse effects of antibiotic use on the immune system include impaired development of granulocytes, thrombocytes and lymphocytes, while also suppressing the action of phagocytes. (These are all immune cells, each with their own specialized function.) Recurrent antibiotic use can cause bone marrow depression, which then impairs the development of all these important immune cells and the ability of the immune system to respond appropriately. Antibiotics are also capable of causing allergic reactions, skin eruptions and liver dysfunction.
As the immune system is weakened by the repeated use of antibiotics, children become more susceptible to infection, which is then treated with another round of antibiotics—a vicious circle.
THE CORRECT MEDICAL CARE
The correct medical care and treatment is to clear the infection and other symptoms while simultaneously supporting and strengthening the immune system. With the correct medical care, your child should grow stronger after recovering from each acute infection, as his or her immune system grows “wiser” and more effective from the experience. This translates to a lower susceptibility to illness and an easier and quicker recovery without the use of antibiotics.
All medical conditions can be placed into one of two categories: acute or chronic. Acute conditions are short-term maladies such as colds, coughs, fevers or the flu, while chronic conditions are ongoing, longer-term problems such as recurrent ear infections, asthma, eczema, digestive problems, stomachaches, learning difficulties, behavioral and mood conditions, plus the whole spectrum of autistic disorders.
Regardless of whether your child’s condition is acute or chronic, the most important issues are
- How to treat the condition
- How to help your child’s immune system respond appropriately and correctly to the challenge
- How to help your child’s immune system become stronger and “wiser” after each encounter
- How to help your child’s immune system grow and mature properly
Ultimately, the way a condition is treated will affect how your child grows, evolves and matures into adulthood.
What Is a Symptom?
Disease and illness are typically characterized according to their symptoms. But what exactly is a symptom? Here’s what Webster’s Dictionary has to say:
1.A characteristic sign or indication of the existence of something else.
2.A sign or an indication of disorder or disease.
3.A phenomenon that arises from and accompanies a particular disease or disorder and serves as an indicator of it. (1)
In other words, a symptom is a warning that something negative is occurring on a deeper level within the body. You can think of a symptom as the engine trouble indicator light on the dashboard of your car. When it comes on, you stop the car as soon as possible because you know that something is not functioning properly and needs to be addressed. Pretending not to see the light, or covering it up with a piece of tape, will only lead to more serious problems.
Treating the Symptom, But Not the Cause
Allopathic treatments and pharmaceutical medications do just that: they only cover up the symptom and never address the real cause of the problem.
An example, commonly seen in children, is the recurrent ear infection. The typical allopathic treatment for an ear infection is a five-to-ten-day course of antibiotics. If the infection recurs a week, a month or three months later, antibiotics are given again. In cases like this, it’s clear that although the medication alleviated the immediate symptom (ear infection), it didn’t cure the pattern of illness because it didn’t treat the real problem of the underlying immune weakness, which creates the susceptibility. And it may have made the problem even worse. Studies have shown that when ear infections are treated with antibiotics, it can lead to an actual increase in the number and frequency of ear infections.
Fortunately, the body will always let you know that something is wrong through the symptoms your child displays. This notification may be “diplomatic” at first, but if the warning is ignored or suppressed, the symptoms will become more obvious, distressing and uncomfortable.
Understanding the enormous difference between suppressing symptoms through pharmaceutical drugs and truly healing your child by treating the root cause is the beginning of truly effective medical care.
Detoxification for Infants and Children
Infants and children are still growing and developing their detoxification organs and systems. Because their liver, kidneys, intestinal system and blood-brain barrier are still under construction, they are much more susceptible to the adverse effects of pollutants and also less capable of detoxifying these toxins.
There are also individual differences between children. There are children who are more susceptible to different types of toxins because their particular body may have a more difficult time detoxifying and eliminating that particular type of toxin. This is very commonly seen with metals such as lead, mercury or cadmium, where two children from the same family may have the same degree of exposure, but one child’s body is unable to detoxify that metal as effectively as the other child. The first child will be the one to suffer from the effects of the accumulation and exposure.
Due to these individual differences and because of the inherent sensitivity to detoxification and toxins in the childhood years, I strongly recommend that any detoxification program for your child be coordinated and overseen by a health-care professional who is particularly experienced in working with children and capable of undertaking the testing needed to design a detoxification program that is specific to your child.