So how did I come to this conclusion? My children were a mixed bag of fluctuating concerns and the confirmation that their yeast and bacteria seemed to be under control, but so many other things were not, had me looking for more. But then again, I am ALWAYS looking for more. =) There were two things, specifically, that really sent me on the hunt for what I was missing. Grayson's PANDAS flare was getting worse rather than better and Gavin's mood swings, anger and violence appeared to be untouched. Why parasites though? I mean, I have treated for them bi-annually with Humaworm and heck, we even all used Alinia for over a month for Gavin's Dientamoeba Fragilis, right? How could it STILL be parasites?
Let me just put it out there in black and white. If you have a compromised immune system in any way, shape or form, you DO have a parasite issue. I promise you!
Parasites are masters at survival, their SOLE purpose in life is to survive, that's it! They complete their life cycle by changing the neurology of their hosts just enough to ensure survival, but usually they are also smart enough to not kill it, usually. If they can adapt to their environment, which they can (give them access to a child with a faulty immune system due to heavy metal toxicity and reduced gut flora), they root themselves deeply in your system and continue their life cycle by making you crave the foods that feed them, creating the itchies where it counts for spreading eggs under the nails, they can even force you to be attracted to certain people and yes, this is documented! In fact, MUCH of what I have found out about parasites is widely known by certain professionals, but don't ask why treatments aren't effective. I don't even want to go there. You are free to dig deeper, if you wish. I'm satisfied with dealing with the details I can control from my own home base....treatment!
A few doctors to research, who have made waves in the medical community by successfully treating illnesses that result from parasitic infections, are: Dr. Klinghardt, Dr. Simon Yu and Dr. Fry. These men are pioneers in this field. Dr. Klinghardt focuses on Lyme Disease, PANDAS and Autism, Dr. Yu has recovered people from major diseases like cancer, CFS and pancreatitis among others and Dr. Fry is a researcher who has even discovered a new malaria-like parasite that is responsible for diseases like MS, Rheumatoid Arthritis and perhaps Autism, among others. Google any of these doctors and you will get more information than you know what to do with!! Literally! It can be overwhelming, because there are really so many directions you can go with treatment, but the one constant I am seeing here is that a periodic cleanse here and there just doesn't cut it for someone who is chronically infected. Treatment NEEDS to be from 6 months to a year, STRAIGHT! Seems harsh, but parasites are much smarter than we give them credit for, in fact, they may even be smarter than us. They have certainly been around longer.
This blurb is from an article written by Dr. Simon Yu:
"In this modern age, do you think parasite problems are limited to third world countries and don’t exist in the United States, Canada or Europe? Think again! Who does the cooking and cleaning of dishes at restaurants? Food from all over the world comes with no strict regulations for pesticides, herbicides and potential parasite eggs embedded in the food.
I have seen patients from Germany, Canada, Australia and most of the United States. People from all over have parasite problems. I’ve written numerous articles on parasites and parasite related unusual medical symptoms. Some of the conditions responding to parasite medications include allergies, eczema, asthma, migraine headache, nightmare, bedwetting, chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia, arthralgia, multiple sclerosis, irritable bowel syndrome, seizure, mental illness and even cancer.
The idea of de-worming everybody seems a de-lovely concept and does not seem appealing but it is not a far out concept even in the United States. Americans are suffering from a silent epidemic of parasite related medical conditions. The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends massive de-worming of populations especially in schools whenever over 20 percent of the population is suspected of parasite infestation."
Dr. Simon Yu has written a fascinating book called Accidental Cure.
From Dr. Klinghardt...I love this info, because I have always been intrigued by what drives us, what creates our "personality". I've come to this conclusion myself recently, and Dr. Klinghardt has just confirmed it for me!
- We are all a composite of many personalities. Our consciousness is a composite of 90% microbes and 10% us. Our thinking, feeling, creativity, and expression are 90% from the microbes within us. Patients often think, crave, and behave as if they are the parasite. Our thinking is shaded by the microbes thinking through us. The food choices, behavioral choices, and who we like is the thinking of the microbes within us expressing themselves.
- Patients will reject all treatments that affect the issue that requires treating. Patients will not guide themselves to health when the microbes have taken over.
- Parasites induce changes in our system to make us a comfortable host.
- Mimosa pudica (Sensitive plant) powder is an Ayurvedic herb that is 30 times stronger than the best medical drug. Start with 1/2 teaspoon twice a day two days a week and work up to 1 teaspoon daily for 3 months.
- The endothelium is the largest organ in the body and is “bug heaven”.
Since Mimosa Pudica is so hard to find, here is a link for you to purchase it. I have nothing to do with this company, I am just passing this on, because the search for a reputable product was very hard and I would like to make it easier on you!
An incredible overview of a conference called "A Deep Look Beyond Lyme" includes data from each of these famous doctors! I HIGHLY recommend taking the time to read this one. Lyme is not the only focus here. Dr. Klninghardt even mentions PANDAS.
This is an interview with Dr. Fry about the parasite he discovered, it is phenomenal information about a marlia-like protozoa called Protomyxoa, which is Greek for “slime forming protozoan”. In this interview he also discusses the diseases it's heavily linked to, biofilm, the herxheimer effect, how it is transmitted (tick bite is one of the vectors, and to think we aren't testing for this infection when we tell people they are clear of Lyme Disease), etc. Remember, we can only find things we are effectively testing for. Dr. Fry also has a lab where various testing can be ordered.
The oxymoron between biomedicine and parasites
Here is where it gets interesting. So we think we are doing the right thing by our kids, supplementing their nutritional deficiencies with hoards of vitamins and such. But did we ever stop to think about WHY those deficiencies are there to begin with? Ok so yes, heavy metals play a role and limited diets too, but why are ALL kids on the spectrum low in B vitamins, particularly B12 and why are ALL kids on the spectrum deficient in minerals like zinc and magnesium and why oh why is their benefitial gut flora so depeleted....the common denominator I have uncovered is that parasites THRIVE on this stuff. Yup, every time you put another supplement down your child's throat, consider the possibility that you are FEEDING a parasite, possibly even big fat and very happy worms. A thought you can't fathom....well you better get ready, because when you pick yourself back up off the floor after witnessing one of these fellas coming from your own child (or yourself), you have some major accepting to do, lol. Use that fear to drive you forward. So, if we are feeding these fookers with our children's cravings, the supplements we use and we certainly aren't using anything strong enough to kill them, what are you left with in the end, continued nutritional deficiencies in your kids (because they don't get much of the nutrients) and a fat case of parasites, resulting in symptoms you can't seem to gain control of. Geez, it's a wonder we can't seem to get past chronic cases of pathogenic overgrowth!!
Oh, and one last note on yet another common thread here is that it has been documented that the Ascaris worm can and DOES cause gluten-intolerance. Things that make you go hmmmmm.
PANDAS and PARASITES?
BIG connection here. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised, if it was ultimately determined that the helminth is at the root of every chronic case. So let's explore why doesn't PANDAS go away. Well, the immune system is definitely definitely THE root of this problem, but because of the immune system, the parasites are a massive problem. The helminth is a worm, not microscopic, a visible worm that can be visibly seen when you are successful at evacuating them. A helminth houses (provides shelter) for the smaller guys like bacteria (strep), yeast and viruses. Biofilm protects all of these guys from your immune system. You can't kill off a bacteria that has a nice comfy home in your body. When a worm dies, it releases all of the house guests inside and initiates a flare. Worms don't die easily unless they have reached their life expectancy and that can be years for many of them, about 2-6 years on average, or you do something to kill them off, hence the die off. One of the big players is the Ascaris Lumbricoides. Through my extensive network of connections, I have personally seen what other autistic, ADHD, and PANDAS kids harbor and this is just one of the more common ones! Symptoms that have been historically documented by professionals as being associated with this particular parasite are: asthma, eczema, bronchitis, rashes, dilated pupils, hyperactivity among others that effect the GI tract, as well. The Ascaris releases amphetamines, hence the hyperactivity and dilated eyes, and perhaps very much related to the ADHD symptoms we are seeing so frequently.
How can you learn what infections you may be harboring...well, like Lyme, it's VERY hard to successfully test for parasites. Just because you have tested and either found none or perhaps a few, that does not mean it's accurate. Find yourself a GOOD infectious disease doctor who knows about parasites, or you can go see one of the doctors listed above. Surprisingly, the most accurate form of testing to date, appears to be energy testing!! And of course, visual identification under a microscope, but remember, this will ONLY be effective if you are passing the parasites/eggs in your stool. 90% of parasites remain OUTSIDE of the GI tract most of the time, only returning during full and/or new moon phases to procreate. If you are going to experiment with treatment options, this is the time to do it. The first 15 days after a full moon is when a portion of the parasites will generally be in the GI tract.
Our personal story
When we finally bit the bullet and went strong on the parasites with multiple methods of treatment at once, we began to unveil the children under these infections. Hindsight is a beautiful thing, but unfortunately it also means we can't piece together our current story until we navigate past the event. We have always seen glimmers of what it could be like to have our children without all their "extras", but we have never had that for any length of time, some dark veil has always stolen those moments from us. When PANDAS hit our house hard this past year, I was thrown for an incredible loop. We were doing EVERYTHING right, we never strayed, we never cheated on diets, never slipped on our chosen treatments, yet we had these crazy inconsistencies that fit no rhyme or reason. And Gavin, poor Gavin...he was living in an inconsistent world of pain and confusion. He wasn't "classic" in any way, he didn't fit autism or PANDAS, but he wasn't right, he was a loose canon! He did however fit every symptom in the book for Oppositional Defiance Disorder (ODD). I often felt like, if we weren't doing biomed with him practically from birth, he would have been much worse off. But we still weren't getting to the root of the problem by treating him like a mirror image of Grayson. Something was different. I wasn't satisfied with the recommended, "maybe it's just his personality". No, I was not willing to accept that a person could be born "normal" and be SO angry. Something was wrong.
When I pondered our successes from the past, it seems as though treatments that overlapped with parasites have given us that glimmer of hope, just long enough to steal it away again. Why? Because parasites are masters at survival!! And our treatments were never long or strong enough. The icing on the cake was when I read that Dr. Klinghardt considers the helminth to be at the root of PANDAS. Low and behold....we found our new angle!
What I am excited to tell you, confirms Dr. Klinghardt's statement about PANDAS and helminth parasites, Grayson's PANDAS symptoms have responded slow and steady to treatment and now that the symptoms are mainly under control (with only 3 months of treatment so far) we have witnessed a direct correlation between his PANDAS symptoms (tics, OCD and rages) and the passing of worms. He has an instant increase in symptoms as his body is trying to filter out the toxins from killing off worms. I have photos of these guys too, there is no denying what they are!! One picture was taken in a glass jar with alcohol in it and you can see the entire intestinal tract of the worm. It was 8 inches long. If you think that's bad, consider the fact that we also got one that was 21 inches long from our 36 inch tall child!
We've seen glimmers of a reduction in oxalate issues. This is HUGE for us, because prior to treatment, Gavin was increasingly dumping oxalates in enormous amounts through his urine. Tablespoons of crystals at a time. It had grown to become a weekly event. He was having regular potty accidents, his urine was cloudy and thick with crystals. It immediately came to a screeching halt!! And how has Gavin been doing? After going through a world of hurt with initial die off....I am AMAZED, truly and incredibly AMAZED by him. I am falling deeply in love, all over again, with my baby boy. I didn't even realize how the violence had driven an imaginary wedge between he and I, until it was gone. The exhaustion of parenting such an explosive child is crippling. Now, he is even more sweet, humorous and charming than I could have ever imagined!! We've replaced the violence with hugs, kisses and frequent unprompted "I love you"s, we have replaced screaming confusion with sharp-as-a-tack cognitive function, we have replaced tantrums and meltdowns with rational cooperation....and there has been weight gain. He was failure to thrive for so long, 27-30 pounds for years, literally. He had lost the weight he gained with the camel milk when we stopped using it. He has already gained 3 pounds back since reducing the parasite burden. Grayson has done the same. And if you are wondering whether I am lucky enough to share this infection with them, yes I do. Parasites are incredibly contagious among family members and it's likely that I have had parasites all through my pregnancies, passing them on to my poor innocent children in utero. There are too many connections I have learned in hindsight to list here. It would take an entire book (hmmmm, there's that book idea again), but let me just say that I had NO idea these things were related. So never say never!!
If you are doing everything possible and just feel like you aren't seeing the progress you think you should be seeing, I would encourage you to dig deeper, much deeper. Parasites may be why.
UPDATE - if you are connecting with this blog entry from years ago, please also see my newer blog where I also address this topic, from a different perspective and with years more experience.