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So anxious about the milk ladder. Seems to be falling apart.

(7 Posts)
ilovetosleep Mon 11-Apr-16 20:31:29

Just looking for a bit of support really. DS2 is almost 2 and we've been trying out the milk ladder for the second time over the last few weeks. Symptoms of CMPI as a baby were all stomach and sleep related - not an IgE allergy. I am finding it really hard that the further up we go, the less control I feel I have and the more inconclusive it all seems. Eg biscuits were fine, one a day, no probs. same with muffins although he didn't really like them. Scotch pancakes, great.

But things started to get a bit weird the last week and I just feel a bit lost. We have been away visiting family. He's been having the pancakes every other day ish, plus some of the malted milk biscuits too. some days he's had both. some days he's had a lot. I also got a bit blase and after 2 years of being completely rigid about my own diet (BF) I had cheese on a slice of pizza thinking everything was heading in the right direction. That was on Wednesday. ON friday we made pancakes and he ate a whole one, but they were regular thin english pancakes and I realised later they have triple the amount of milk in! I didn't even dwell on it when I found out as I was so sure he was turning out to be ok. The last 3 nights he has screamed the house down at bedtime having previously self settled beautifully. He's had to be fed to sleep. Then today he's had really messy nappies twice and lots and lots of wind. Last night he woke in the night - first time in months.

He did have a fever on Friday night so the sleeplessness could be a result of a virus. It could be being unsettled from being on holiday, although he was fine for the first 5 nights.

I just don't know. I feel so lost and disheartened. Feel like giving it all up again and going 100% dairy free. seemed easier almost. doesn't help that he has a speech delay, no words and so can't tell me if anything hurts (maybe that would be too much for a 2 yr old but DS1 was definitely capable of that at his age.)

Any words of wisdom? Was that pancake/my pizza a really really bad move? What do I do now? RL professional support is virtually non existant.

Gileswithachainsaw Mon 11-Apr-16 20:38:49

I can tell you what I did. but this was my decision and you should make your own based on medical advice and your ds. smile

I tried the milk ladder on a couple if occasions when dd2 was 2 ish. I thought it was vital to get her eating milk.

but like your ds she was behind in her speech and toddlers cry over notbing and the whole thing was so stress full.

so I gave up. decided I had a happy healthy child who was growing well and eating well and was really really happy. and milk was not worth it fir me. i didn't feel the benefits if drinking it wheb every nutrient is available else where was worth upsetting my dd over wheb she couldn't properly tell me of she was in a pain or whatever.

she's 5 now. can eat it fine. not that we have it that much anyway. but if we are out she can eat ice cream and choc etc with no ill effects.

grew out if it all by herself and so wasn't worth the stress to me.

ilovetosleep Mon 11-Apr-16 22:22:16

Well I have thought of doing this. But how did you eventually find out she was ok with it all?

Gileswithachainsaw Mon 11-Apr-16 22:36:54

when someone gave her a cup of milk and a milky bar....

the only down side (well it's no big deal to me and hasn't proved to be a problem yet) is that obviously getting to 4/5 and never having had some foods such as cheeses and pizza and a macaroni cheese, these are not items she will eat now. or not consistently anyway.

it doesn't bother me though and she eats well enough.

but like you I felt that a minimally verbal toddler, was not the best stage to be trying to work out if they are crying because the milk has upset their tummy, they have the runs because they had Ice cream or because they were chewing a dish cloth?

my dietitian was happy with my choice. she understood my reasoning and had no concerns re her health and diet. she was like a dog food advert grin shiny hair, soft skin and glowing eyes etc grin

a far cry from the bloated dry scaly pink gunky screaming baby she had been.

so I did feel comfortable in my choice. if I had to do it again i honestly don't even bother.

however this was a good 3/4 years ago now and your drs/dietitian may have advised differently I don't know, but for us it was the right decision.

and obviously it is done around the age where bad experiences associated witg food can lead to more the future. it's important it's fun and stress free and having a parent watch you fir hints of a reaction cant be fun. (something I'm sure you do without realising. as you just do)

Gileswithachainsaw Mon 11-Apr-16 22:41:47

at the very least in your ds's case. give him.a couple of weeks off to get over any virus and holiday tiredness etc and decide then.

it's times like that where it's just impossible to know.

wonderwoo Tue 12-Apr-16 20:49:37

The milk ladder is not an easy thing to do. I echo having a break from it for a while. You can try again when things have settled down and you are both ready. Two is still very young. Current advice is that most children grow out of it by age 5, so no rush. I think it is recommended that if they can tolerate milk at a certain stage of the ladder that you keep giving it to them, because they think it helps the body to overcome the allergy. But not sure how well proven that is. And there is no rush.

It sounds to me like your DS can tolerate a bit of cooked milk, but not yet milk further up the ladder, which is good news. If it was me I would have a good break if it is stressing you and when you are ready start again, but go much slower. So try the first thing (is it biscuits?) and stay on that level for weeks if you wish, keeping a steady daily intake up. When you are really sure he is not reacting, and you feel happy to go up a level, try adding in the next thing, and so on. If you get a reaction then stop and go back to where you know you were okay and leave it for six months before trying again (if you feel like trying again).

My three year old still cannot tolerate milk at all. My older son, was over five before he could tolerate milk.

Take it easy, not worth stressing either of you out about it. He is still very little.

ilovetosleep Wed 13-Apr-16 20:11:32

Its all so stressful, thanks for your support. I think this little episode is likely to be teething but I'm definitely giving it a rest for a while. There are lots of reasons why I feel in a rush. He's also intolerant to wheat and/or gluten, and is overcoming an egg allergy (can now eat it baked but we haven't got to lightly cooked yet - we wanted to get this shot at the milk ladder out of the way first) He starts nursery in september and I really wanted him to be able to enjoy the cooked lunch with everyone else. I really hoped we'd tick at least one thing off the list before then. Also we all miss mac n cheese like you wouldn't believe! I'm worried that if he doesn't try all that creamy goodness while he's still so young, he won't have a taste for it.

Also I am trying to talk DH into DS3 and while this is all going on and so stressful, he won't discuss it!

Thats another story though. Thanks so much for the support. I think I will start with the biscuits again once this bout of whatever it is is over, and stick with them for a long time. The scotch pancakes seemed ok too but I'm just not sure its worth the hassle. We were eating just fine before.

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