Rashmi’s daughter, Saanvi’s condition started simply enough as a small skin rash when she was just 2 years. Gradually, it developed into a severe skin condition spreading to her arms and legs. The route of conventional treatment only provided temporary relief and the child suffered from regular flare ups throughout her childhood. After almost 6 years of this distressing condition, healing happened magically on moving to a natural diet. Read on to know how just in three months, Rashmi managed to get her child off medicines and experienced the magical healing powers of the body.
8 years, Student
(Saanvi’s story as narrated by her mother Rashmi Bhat)
It all began with a rash
It started in the year 2011. My daughter Saanvi, aged 2, developed a small skin rash on her leg. My parents were her primary caregivers from the age of 1 to 5 as I was working and needed their support. Saanvi used to be on a diet of mainly home cooked meals, apart from biscuits once in a while. On doctor’s advice, when she completed 1.5 years of age, she had started having milk and curd. When her skin condition started, we were all puzzled why she had developed this condition as we thought she was eating healthy.
The condition worsened
Soon, the rashes were appearing over her arms and legs. I tried to analyse what could be the cause and I thought maybe a change in climate was aggravating her skin as she had dry skin.
I could not visit my daughter as she lived with my parents in another district which was almost 80 kms from my place. They tried to do what they could and started applying coconut oil on the rashes but with time, it became wet and painful. Subsequently, we consulted with her paediatrician and he informed us that this might be due to climate or water as she used to sit down on the floor and play. He gave us calamine lotion for topical application. However even after using the lotion, the rashes kept appearing and fading and would repeatedly appear at the same places. It would start as dampness on the skin, then a few boils would appear which would last for a week. Subsequently the boils would go away but always leave behind scars which would take their time to fade.
Severe flare up and tryst with allopathy medicines
It was 2012. My daughter was almost three years old. The skin condition had continued for almost a year. One day, her skin really flared up and she got rashes from her elbow to her hand and even her fingers and all the way from her thighs to her legs. My parents were really worried and asked me to come over so we could take her to a skin specialist.
The specialist prescribed an antibiotic. I asked him for the reason behind Saanvi’s skin infection, but I didn’t get any convincing answers. We were just told that some kids develop such conditions and it would go away with time. She had to take a three day course of antibiotic, followed by two days medicine for infection and external application of a cream. Within a day of starting the medicines, the rashes were suddenly gone and the itching stopped too! I was so confused, how could this be possible, I thought these must be very strong medicines. My instinct said that this was wrong but my parents were happy that the rashes and itching were finally gone! Though I was relieved too, I was not happy that I had no clarity from the doctor and still did not know the root cause of the problem.
Repeated Flare ups
For some time there was a period of lull but the condition flared up again after few months. The doctor suggested another course of antibiotics. Having no alternative, we started giving the medicines again.
As time passed by, flare ups every 4-5 months, antibiotics and medicinal creams became a regular affair. We ensured that after her bath, Saanvi would apply a cream for her dry skin - either it was a moisturiser or the medicinal cream. This went on for almost 6 years. We visited many doctors, but the problem still persisted.
Gradually, we noticed that my daughter’s immunity was going down. She became very susceptible to catching colds often. She had become prone to infections and her weight was going down too. Also, after doing research, I found that many medicines used for skin related issues have steroids and I did not want to go this route as I had already seen the effect the medicines were having on my daughter. I continued my search for alternatives.
Trial with alternative medicine
I thought of trying homeopathy. The doctor gave us some pills and told us that the skin condition will seem to worsen first and would improve over time. But the condition flared up so much that there was severe itching and bleeding from the boils. Even at school, teachers had noticed it and started to question us about what was wrong and why we were not doing anything about it. My dad also got very distressed and could not bear to see Saanvi in this condition. It was a tough and trying time for all of us.Caving in to the pressure, we went back to allopathy medicines.
The turning point
I was so frustrated that Saanvi’s skin problems had lasted so long, from the age of 2 and she was 8 years old now. I still had no clue about the cause and I realized that all the medicines were just hiding the symptoms. The root cause was still not addressed and that’s why the condition kept coming back. I wanted answers.
In August 2017, I shared about my daughter’s condition with my friend Smitha Hemadri. She helped me understand that a wrong lifestyle and diet choices were causing toxin build up in Saanvi’s body and that the skin rashes were the body’s effort to eliminate the toxins. She advised me to go the natural way and start Saanvi on a diet consisting of mainly fruits.
Initially it was tough as my daughter only liked banana, but ultimately she agreed to have other fruits as she too wanted to get rid of her issues. She was to have a complete fruit breakfast, but she was not ready for it. So I gave her idli or dosa with minimum oil. For snacks, she used to have only fruits. On Smitha’s advise, I also eliminated wheat, and dairy from her diet. This was a major transition from her earlier food intake. I gave her simple home cooked foods like dal, rice or khichdi. I also stopped all packaged foods including biscuits, they were replaced with fruits. All medicines were stopped. I reduced using moisturisers and creams on her skin and would just use coconut oil when needed.
After making these changes, in twenty-five days, Saanvi’s skin started magically healing. Over the next three months, I realized that the scars too had completely gone. The condition which had lasted almost 6 years, had taken just 3 months to go away by switching to more of natural foods.
Healing and managing flare ups the natural way
Her skin condition used to surely flare up during winter, but this time, in the winter of 2017, it didn’t happen. I attribute it to the change to a natural diet. Earlier, after giving her a bath, we had to mandatorily apply some cream otherwise her skin would go really dry. But now without the cream, her skin is able to stay hydrated. The cream we bought last year is still there as no one has used it. I realized that a clean diet full of fresh food with ample inclusion of fruits and veggies was helping her clean her body and keeping her skin hydrated. She was healing from within!
Last month, there was another incidence where perhaps a pastry she had at a party triggered rashes again. Slowly it became really severe and my husband suggested taking her to the doctor but I was confident of handling it at home and convinced him not to get worried. I focussed on giving her raw, hydrating foods only that day. I offerred her only liquids, such as green vegetable juices, tender coconuts and a lot of water for a day. At night, when she was really hungry, I gave her cooked chana with no spices, just with salt and steamed vegetables. The next day I just applied coconut oil on the rashes and slowly all of them faded.
This experience further strengthened my belief about the body’s self healing mechanism. I became more confident about handling the occasional flare ups in a natural way without any medicines.
The new life
Saanvi is 9 years old now. Having seen the transformation, we have continued with the food changes. She eats a lot of fruits, has green juices with me, I also give her raw vegetables. For example, during lunch, I give her one box of cucumber and carrots. Wheat has been reduced a lot and substituted with rice and millets. She does have a little bit of wheat in the form of roti as she likes it. She’s also off dairy. She consumes biscuits once in a while as compared to her earlier habit of having it every day. These changes have to be done in a gradual manner; you cannot just stop all the processed food at once. For kids, I would advise to slowly decrease processed food and start substituting with fruits and vegetables.
I feel empowered, life has changed for the better
The search for a solution for Saanvi’s skin issues had taken almost 6 years of her childhood. I feel so relieved that we have managed to come out of it for good. It took just 3 months of perseverance on a natural, wholesome diet to heal. The root cause has been addressed and my own experiences have empowered me to handle these problems on my own. I am confident that the body’s self healing mechanism can take care of any such problems. I feel happy that my daughter is medicine-free.
(About Rashmi Bhat: The above story is about Saanvi Bhat, as narrated by Rashmi, her mother. An engineering graduate, Rashmi works as a test centre Manager at Pearson Vue in Bangalore. In her spare time, she loves to cook and travel).
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