I consider myself a fairly smart and informed parent. I keep up with my daughter’s pediatric visits, keep up by subscribing to e-newsletters such as WebMD and BabyCenter, and exchange developmental notes with other parents quite frequently. In addition, I thought the fact that I moonlight as a pharmacist on my days off from being full time mommy was an advantage of sorts. But even with my medical background, I was dumbfounded by three “toddler lessons” I encountered recently.
1. Holding Poop for a Really, Really Long Time
I did not discover how strong my two-year-old's will, determination, and sphincter muscles were until we started potty training. All of a sudden, my daughter went from going “poopy” three times a day to holding her bowel movements for seven days in a row. Yes, you read correctly! Apparently, all you have to do is encourage a toddler to poop in the toilet and she can go from a regular pooping princess to irregular royalty. At this point, going number two in the potty involves lots of water and prune juice, a bribe of goldfish here and there, an insanely quiet bathroom, and lots of prayers.
2. Hand, Food and Mouth Disease
Other than the “poop showdown,” we have a healthy and happy little person. She is up-to-date on her vaccinations and never misses a doctor’s appointment. What she did not have (back in June anyway), was the most tolerant immune system. You see, up until this past summer my daughter did not attend any child care centers or programs. She is our only child and I was her primary care taker. Well, imagine my surprise when my daughter woke up one day with a fever and a sore throat and developed red pustule-like bumps on her hands, face and limbs. We took her to the doctor and it was discovered that she had Hand, Foot and Mouth disease. Huh?!? I had never even heard about this virus until a few days before her episode.
Apparently, the virus was making its rounds at her new school. Much to our dismay, all we could do is offer supportive care (ibuprofen for fever/pain, keeping her hydrated, ice pops for her sore throat, and keeping her comfortable.) No amount of antibiotics would help, as this is a virus. So if your toddler ends up with Hand, Foot and Mouth disease, you just have to “ride it out,” so to speak.
3. Toxic Synovitis
Maybe a week after the virus scare, things seemed to be back to normal. The fever was gone and my daughter’s sores were pretty healed. But one morning, as we called her for her regular morning cereal, she refused to go to the table to eat. She actually demanded to be picked up rather than walk to her chair to savor her favorite time of the day: Meal Time!
My husband and I gave in initially and carried the princess wherever she needed to go. But, once I had enough, I beckoned her to partake in some of her favorite activities with me: go to the park, play catch, all of which she either refused or tried to part-take in while on her knees. This paralyzed me with fear and I rushed her to the ER. The diagnosis was toxic synovitis. Apparently, toxic synovitis is a temporary condition affecting children that causes inflammation of the joints. Symptoms include: hip, thigh and leg pain, which can cause the child to limp due to the amount of pain experienced. Younger kids may refuse to walk altogether, often resorting to crawling or walking on their knees.
After a week of me carrying an extra thirty pound weight around and having her take some time off from school to rest her limbs she was back to herself. Our princess was rested, walking and “ready to go!"
Actually, we are still working on “ready to go” part. She now goes poopy every two days. Sweet victory!
The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of, and should not be attributed to, POPSUGAR.