Anyone else have child with chronic gastro symptoms?

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notinabox43
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10 Jan 2013, 5:04 pm

I have a son with chronic gastrointestinal distress. It comes and goes but is more frequent than picking up a bug at school.
He is borderline aspie and a sensitive kid.
I wondered if his symptoms could be related to his aspieness.

Any others out there?



AardvarkGoodSwimmer
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10 Jan 2013, 5:51 pm

Quote:
http://www.economist.com/node/21560523

“ . . . many autistic people have a genetic defect which interferes with their sulphur metabolism. The Clostridia in their guts could thus be pushing them over the edge. . . ”



And this article is good for pointing out, hey, the bacterial in the gut are a complex ecosystem even though many of these bacteria are helpful. So, it might come and go, and it might take a while for a doctor to get it straight. And I really think probiotics are one wave of the future.

PS I am not a parent. I am a person who lives my life on the Spectrum and I try and be a pretty good guy. :D



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10 Jan 2013, 9:02 pm

Before DS was diagnosed, we knew about a dairy intolerance on both sides of our family, so we have been careful about dairy products. When I was nursing, I had to go dairy-free (I drank almond milk.) This eliminated most of the problems we had like you describe.

He grew out of it as he got older, but still has trouble tolerating fresh liquid milk (interestingly, no trouble with cooked milk, yogurt, cheese, etc.) It gives him gas and stomachaches, so we avoid it.

It does seem to me that many kids on the spectrum have some kind of food allergies or intolerances. I would make sure he gets tested for food allergies, and have a medical doctor give you an elimination diet to follow. (Many people simply go on the GAPS diet or the GFCF diet, but I - not a doctor mind you - think it's better to figure out exactly what is causing the problem and try to eliminate that. Those diets are not easy to follow, and nobody with a kid on the spectrum needs any more challenges than they already have.)



JustKeepSwimming
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11 Jan 2013, 3:16 am

My DD is sensitive to food and through trail and error, dietician, seeing a specialist for allergies and even a naturalpath who did iridology we have found dairy is an issue too but she can tolerate limited diary. She gets a lot of gas if she has eaten something that doesn't agree with her.

Tummy or digestion problems has been common for kids/adults with ASD. Keep record of what he eats and you may find a pattern with certain foods that may not agree with him.


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11 Jan 2013, 5:35 am

We noticed a correlation between dairy and hyperactivity in our daughter. So, she has been on a low dairy diet for a long time. She has no gastric/bowel problems at all and never has, but I think it's very possible that we'd be seeing problems by now or later on, if she was still consuming normal amounts of dairy. I have bowel problems and a low dairy diet seems to be the answer for me too, along with keeping wheat to a minimum. I tested negative for coeliac, so I don't feel I have to exclude it entirely, but my body tells me it's not the best thing for me to be eating. I used to have chronic IBS (well, that's what I was told I had). No snswers were forthcoming, from hospital visits, so I've had to work it out for myself. I only have the occasional problem now (usually after having a milky cappuccino). A GFCF diet would suit me perfectly, but it's fairly radical.


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11 Jan 2013, 2:00 pm

I had those problems a lot growing up, I think it's fairly common and there is some sort of connection. I don't think the bowel problems cause autism (though it could make symptoms appear worse). I figure whatever is responsible for causing the autism is also responsible for the digestion problems. I don't think I grew out of it so much as now that I'm an adult I have more control over what I eat. Certain but not all milk products are probably the biggest offenders for me. My son with autism doesn't drink milk and as a result doesn't seem to have this problem, there aren't many foods he will eat. I think he would have the same problems if his diet was different.



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11 Jan 2013, 2:07 pm

Our son's tummy problems seem to correlate with stress and/or foods his tummy is not accustomed to or in quantities he is not accustomed too. Also citrus and milk (cheese and yogurt is fine because of the fact that the lactose is pre-processed by bacteria) do not agree with him. Too much fat does not process well, either.



lmevans
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11 Jan 2013, 2:19 pm

Our daughter has problems as well. The doctor told us to cut back milk and that has not helped at all. It seems stress related. We are going to try and see a gastro specialist and run allergy tests if we have to.



momsparky
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11 Jan 2013, 2:55 pm

It strikes me (in a completely unscientific way) that some of these food intolerances and various allergies might be another version of sensory sensitivities. After all, your digestive system and your immune system are both heavily to neurology. Wish somebody in the scientific community would connect those dots....

(I do agree that these issues are not causative of autism, just that they seem to be common.)



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11 Jan 2013, 2:59 pm

I totally believe it is linked and caused by anxiety, however I have not met a Dr that agrees :? My AS DD5 has had loose movements every day for over a year along with occasional stomach pain (by no means chronic though), we went to the Drs several times and kept being told its "normal". They took a sample, felt her tummy and said everything was ok, they did not offer further investigation even when I pushed for it.

Having pretty much given up on my Drs I started reading up on it myself and began giving her daily probiotic drinks which she loves and it sorted it out within days. I think headaches are common too which she also suffers with occasionally.

Hope you can get it sorted for him soon :)

Link to Actimel Probiotic Products Website



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12 Jan 2013, 5:28 am

Hi - sorry to hear that your son is suffering with what may possibly be IBS. As anxiety is the dominant emotion in those on the spectrum, stress/anxiety would be high on the list of considerations as the trigger. Looking at the environment your son is having to cope with and possibly making changes where possible may be beneficial(be it school or home).This issue is very common within the community. Both my sons had to deal with such issues from school-age onwards, requiring treatment. It was school-related, when my sons were very young. This can of course continue into adulthood and be something that is learned to live with and manage. I put this together:
http://www.aspie-editorial.com/autismas-ibs/http://www.aspie-editorial.com/autismas-ibs/



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15 Jan 2013, 1:48 pm

My 4 year old son has had GI problems (mostly chronic constipation) all his life. When he was an infant, we had to stimulate him with a thermometer for him to have a bowel movement at all. Now we just make sure to always have some Miralax on hand.


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15 Jan 2013, 4:21 pm

momsparky wrote:

Many people simply go on the GAPS diet or the GFCF diet, but I - not a doctor mind you - think it's better to figure out exactly what is causing the problem and try to eliminate that. Those diets are not easy to follow, and nobody with a kid on the spectrum needs any more challenges than they already have.)


My entire family is on the GAPS diet and although it started off labour intensive, you don't have to start with the Introduction diet. You can start with the Full diet and work backwards. Also, we found we ended up spending less time dealing with behaviours, stomach upsets, growing pains, bed-wetting clean-ups and nose bleeds - which meant we had more time to focus on the program.

Also, the GAPS diet isn't just about eliminating foods. It's about learning how to cook properly. It's about understanding why foods affect some and not others. It talks about how influential our gut is towards our brain. It talks about good bacteria vs bad bacteria - why we have cravings, teaches us how to listen to our bodies and senses and explains a lot about genetics.. This is just the gist of it too. I find it quite interesting :)

The GFCF diet may work but unless you plan on sticking to this diet for LIFE, it's not very practical. This diet is just another "fashionable" diet that is profiting a lot more than providing any relief. If you are sensitive to wheat, chances are you are sensitive to most grains, which is why many give up on this diet altogether.



notinabox43
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16 Jan 2013, 4:02 am

Thanks so much for all the helpful replies! I have lactose intolerance, so will investigate that with him. My other son is on a lactose free diet.
The dr just gave him some medicine to reduce acid reflux which we will try for a month.
Also trying the probiotic route, but hard to do too many things at once because you don't know which worked!
Thanks again everyone:-)



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20 Jan 2013, 5:14 pm

My daughter has daily stomach aches-sometimes to the point of doubling over in pain. We have sought out drs and specialists-all to no avail. We have gone GF. We have gone Lactose Free. Nothing helps. As a previous poster mentioned, I believe it is caused by anxiety as she is worst on school day mornings or right after a meltdown. There is a connection between anxiety and stomach pain for my daughter.



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20 Jan 2013, 6:30 pm

Mama_to_Grace wrote:
My daughter has daily stomach aches-sometimes to the point of doubling over in pain. We have sought out drs and specialists-all to no avail. We have gone GF. We have gone Lactose Free. Nothing helps. As a previous poster mentioned, I believe it is caused by anxiety as she is worst on school day mornings or right after a meltdown. There is a connection between anxiety and stomach pain for my daughter.


I noticed on the film 'Temple Grandin', she says she can only eat Jello because of stomach pains!
My GPs all deny there is a connection but Im convinced there is.