My name is Calvin, and I am a father of 2. My elder girl is 8 and my younger one is 4. Both have allergic rhinitis issues at their early age. Inheritance, allergies, dust mites, immunity, haze? I really don’t know but I decided to write about this as “the returned of the haze” brings back some bad memories of 2015 and reminds me that it may somehow be linked.
My elder girl, had rhinitis allergies since 2 or 3 years old (can’t really remember when we discovered), but her condition was much better compared to my younger girl. It only got worsen at the age of 4 as during that time, there were rampant forest fires in Indonesia choking the region for weeks in 2015.
That was considered the worst haze episode in Singapore, with PSI reading at a hazardous level above 300, forcing schools to close. Mask and air purifier were also completely out of stocks during that time.
My elder girl started visiting clinics followed by hospitals very regularly during that period, and even after the haze incident is over, she was still on medication (Montelukast, Antihistamine, and Nasonex steroid nasal spray) for more than a year. These are considerably safe western medication but known to have side effects; luckily she was totally OK with them throughout, unlike my younger one.
During the same “hazy” period in 2015, my younger girl was just a newborn. Luckily, she was always in the indoor, and we kept our windows closed all the time. Also, we had 2 air purifier running 24 hours a day in the house to ensure the air is breathable, so we thought everything would be fine.
Unfortunately, whatever we did must not had been good enough to keep her healthy. A few weeks later, she was down with flu symptoms – high fever, sneezing and running nose. And this was where the agonizing part begins.
After the haze episode in 2015, we thought it was finally over, but we didn’t expect it was just the beginning for my younger girl. She started falling sick very, very frequently (every month), until recently. Every time we brought her to a doctor, it ended up with the need of some form of Antibiotics.
During that period, we bought a few thousand dollars vacuum machine from Delphin as we thought it could be dust mites; we replaced all our bed-frames, mattresses and even changed our sofa as we thought the materials could worsen her condition; we repainted our entire house with odour-less anti-mold paint; we changed our entire air-con system; we tried all sorts of vitamins to boost her immunity; we tried essential oil from Young Living as we heard many good things about them; we seen many doctors to pediatrician to specialist, but nothing helps. Over time, I got lost, angry, hearth broken, depressed and desperate to find a solution.
At about 3 years old, we went to consult a respiratory specialist, and were told that she has asthma on top of her rhinitis allergies, and would required some long-term medication such as Montelukast, Antihistamine, Nasonex steroid nasal spray, Flixotide and Ventolin.
After starting to administer these medication, her sleep was pretty much disturbed by the side effects every night, with hours of screaming and crying in the middle of her sleep. I was devastated, and I blamed myself every day for not being able to do find a solution to treat her.
One day in April this year, I passed by a TCM store (Eu Yang Sheng) after some groceries shopping (in fact, I passed by this store very regularly, but it didn’t come across my mind that I should explore traditional Chinese medication at all until this day). I walked in, started picking up different bottles of supplements and herbs, and started reading every one of them on every shelf.
A middle age sales lady approached me and asked if I needed help, and I told her I didn’t know exactly what I was looking for and instead I told her my story.
She is a kind and patient sales lady, experienced but not pushy; as I was sure she could tell that I would buy anything that has the slightest chance of improving my girls condition. In returned, she shared her personal experience, advise me on the types of food to avoid, recommend me to treat the root of the problem instead of depending on western medication too much.
And that was the first time I was introduced to Cordyceps, and finally understood what it really does. I was still a little skeptical about all the wonderful things it does, but that day, I bought more than $600 worth of it together with other lung tonic herbs home happily.
Immediately, I started giving my girls very small dosage of Pure Cordyceps every other day, and eventually everyday after a month. It comes in 90 small capsules per bottle with pure Cordyceps powder (due to their young age, I only gave them 1/2 a capsule each time), easily diluted into either congee (Chinese rice porridge) or soup when pulled apart, and pretty tasty. As an additional supplement, I also cook Lungs Tonic Soup with fruits like apples and pear once a week to strengthen and re-energize their lungs. They favorite I would say are apples.
Note: do not take Cordyceps if your child is having fever; start only after 3 days once she completely recovers from fever. If she is on western medication, please allow at least 4 hours apart. This is my personal experience but please consult a TCM doctor when in doubt.
It has been 5 months now, and I can only say that I regretted not walking into that store much earlier. Not only have I noticed improvement in their morning sinus symptoms, it has been almost 5 months now that my younger have not been on any Antibiotics. Although she has flu and fever twice during the past 5 months, she recovered pretty much after 3 days compared to 1-2 weeks previously; and had seldom caught flu virus from school anymore.
It has been 2 weeks since the haze has came back to this region; I am crossing my fingers everyday and doing my best to keep my children healthy with these easy home remedy. I believe you will do the same too. If you do encounter the same situation, or your child do have the same symptoms as mine, you can always reach out to me privately or consult a TCM doctor for advise.
Thank you for reading my lengthy post, stay healthy and may god bless our children forever.