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Non-Food Items Your Baby Or Child Needs To Avoid
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Did you know PlayDough is made from wheat? And a kid can't help but get that gunk under their fingernails. Once it's under their fingernails, it's going in their mouth, sure as shootin'!

Tonight I visited with a lady whose child had recently been diagnosed with celiac. Like most of us when we first start out, she wasn't aware that PlayDough could be a problem. I mean, who eats PlayDough, right? But the problem isn't usually one of intentional ingestion, it's about little kids whose fingers go from their nose, to their mouth, to God-knows-where. Kids can be pretty messy.

So I thought maybe it was time, once again, to post the non-food items we parents need to be careful about. Feel free to add to my list, but here's a starter:



  • school glue (we use Elmers, but we also wash hands after use)
  • nail polish remover (none are safe, so we wash with a nail scrubber after use)
  • lotion (contact the company--Vaseline is a no-no)
  • Chapstick and other lip balms (we use Kiss My Face)
  • sunscreen (last summer Coppertone was fine)
  • PlayDough (Colorations makes one that's gluten-free)
  • finger paints (I haven't been able to find any that are safe)
  • other kinds of paints (we wash hands after use)
  • crayons (Crayola are safe--or were last Sept.)
  • wet wipes (we avoid them)
  • hand sanitizer (I haven't found any that are safe)
  • topical medicines (we avoid stuff like Cortizone)
  • lick-ables (like the glue on an envelope--we use self-sealing envelopes)
  • shampoo (Suave for Kids is safe)
  • soap (we use Ivory or Dove, but I haven't called the companies in a while)
  • laundry detergent (ALL is safe)
  • dish soap (we use Dawn, but I haven't called the company for more than a year)
  • cat food/dog food (we don't let Annie feed the pets... EVER)
  • toothpaste (we use Crest, but some others are safe too--call the company to make sure)

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Just curious...how old is this list? I think it has some inaccuracies.

As far as I know Chapstick is safe as is Blistex Medicated Lip Balm (in the blue-green tube), which I've used for years.

Gluten in envelope glue is a myth, not that it's very tasty and many people choose not to lick envelopes but it's not because of gluten..

I've never heard of gluten being in nail polish remover or Wet Wipes or hand sanitizer, etc.

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This list has a lot of "myths". For instance the Elmer's glue myth:

"Is Elmer's glue gluten free?

All of our products are gluten free except for the Elmer's Finger Paints. The finger paints contain wheat and oat products."

http://www.elmers.com/about/faqs

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Chapstick is a brand. And AFAIK everything they make is fine. People do seem to use that word to mean lip balm. I have seen wheatgerm oil in some lip balms but I can't remember which ones now.

There is a children's bath product with wheat in it but I can't remember the name now. I want to say Alba. But that might be wrong.

Also a reminder that you may want to not use items containing gluten for yourself. I gave my daughter a rash from using a wheat containing shampoo and also an oat containing bath product. I thought I had rinsed the tub well but it wasn't enough.

One of my big beefs when my daughter was younger was the amount of food used in school for math lessons. The teachers were aware of my daughter's allergies and still expected her to handle things like pizza and cookies and Twizzlers. She also has a peanut allergy and had to count M & Ms.

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This post needs to be deleted. The inaccuracies are going to cause issues for people if they don't read the entire thing.

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The original post is more fiction than fact. It is correct, however, about Play-Doh brand modeling compound.

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Cortizone??? You mean the stuff I've been lathering on my daughter's intensely itchy skin might be more of a hinderance than a help? She hasn't been diagnosed (The blood work came back negative but we are going gluten free to see if it helps her myriad of issues but the doc's have given us creams and lotions, and pills and... grrr! Not one of them made one dang bit of difference!

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Cortizone??? You mean the stuff I've been lathering on my daughter's intensely itchy skin might be more of a hinderance than a help? She hasn't been diagnosed (The blood work came back negative but we are going gluten free to see if it helps her myriad of issues but the doc's have given us creams and lotions, and pills and... grrr! Not one of them made one dang bit of difference!

Many of the op's statements are inaccurate. Please do some research before reacting to this thread.

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Cortizone??? You mean the stuff I've been lathering on my daughter's intensely itchy skin might be more of a hinderance than a help? She hasn't been diagnosed (The blood work came back negative but we are going gluten free to see if it helps her myriad of issues but the doc's have given us creams and lotions, and pills and... grrr! Not one of them made one dang bit of difference!

Note that she didn't say there was gluten in there. She just said she avoided it. Just like she avoids hand sanitizer and wipes.

I have never heard of gluten in crayons but some do contain soy if you're allergic to that.

I don't go by lists anyway. I always check the labels.

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    • I figured I would update those who were wondering.  I have gotten the appt. so far moved up to August 30. I am waiting to have gene testing done via swab for all 3 of my kiddos tomorrow. My daughters celiac antibodies came up negative but her IgA is low which the ped said could cause false negative antibodies for celiac so she will need to see a GI dr. also. The pediatrician is going to call the GI to try to get them in sooner. I am keeping them all on a gluten diet until the GI dr. decides what to do. I am on the cancellation list already for my son, however I am not going to be persistent with my phone calls to them until I have the results of the gene test. I really want that result in my hand before going to the GI dr if I can. Maybe if he is positive, along with his bloodwork and my history they can forgo the endoscopy. But he will eat gluten till then.  My husband and I have been very honest and upfront with him as to what is going on and the possibility of the endoscopy and what that entails and although scared in general he seems ok after assuring him that since I have it he has me to help him every step of the way.  Going through his current diet with him I realized that he is truly on such a low gluten diet that I am actually surprised his bloodwork shows antibodies at all!  So I told him to make a list of allllll the gluten he could possibly think of eating and he needs to pound it until the GI visit or endoscopy. Funny thing is everything he keeps thinking of to want to eat...is already gluten free!  The other night we were at a friends and he asked if he could be done with his hotdog. I made him finish just the bread 😂 Thanks for your help and advise and I will keep y'all posted on both kids!  My oldest is a ok as far as all his antibodies. Just actually had a follow up for other immune issues and all his levels are now normal!
    • I like your plan Cara, I may have to include it in my sons.    Poor little guy is still very very sick. I think he is resisting and cheating, despite having the support of two other siblings and a 100% gluten-free home. 
    • Despite it being a nightmare, I did wait for my kids to get biopsies. At one point I had one severely ill child gluten-free and two more waiting having to eat it. It was worth the wait though and I think long term a biopsy may be worthwhile, especially for school. I have already had issues with schools and camps so having a firm diagnosis has been helpful. 
    • Knowing that the reaction to gluten in celiacs is an uncalled for immune system reaction, I was thinking of how a cure would be possible. Maybe a medicine that somehow turns off the immune system. The only thing that i've heard do that... HIV.  obviously that's way worse than celiac. Just some food for thought.
    • Well, you can probably get an apple or something.  You might be able to get someone to boil you some eggs.  But be careful of things like nuts that should be naturally gluten free.  They have almost always been soaked in a flavor solution that usually containes caramel coloring, "soy" (wheat) sauce and other aditives.  If I am really hungry and must eat in a Chinese restaurant, I order plain white rice and steamed vegetables.  But even so, you must monitor it carefully.  The rice sometimes has other substances added to give it a better texture, and very often the vegetables have in fact had "just a little bit" of soy sauce added.  To be fair, celiac disease is hardly ever found in East Asians, so understandably people are not tuned it to it.  Also, culturally, with the exception of fruits, it is generally thought that the flavor of foods needs to be enhanced, so it is had to find anything natural even in the "western" gorceries. Even in the western restaurants, be careful.  Fish and meat and often vegetables are usually pre-marinated. I will not even attempt to address the issue of cross-comtamination, since that is a whole higher order of things. I do know what I am talking about; I have celiac and have worked here for nearly 7 years.  
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