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      Frequently Asked Questions About Celiac Disease   09/30/2015

      This Celiac.com FAQ on celiac disease will guide you to all of the basic information you will need to know about the disease, its diagnosis, testing methods, a gluten-free diet, etc.   Subscribe to Celiac.com's FREE weekly eNewsletter   What are the major symptoms of celiac disease? Celiac Disease Symptoms What testing is available for celiac disease?  Celiac Disease Screening Interpretation of Celiac Disease Blood Test Results Can I be tested even though I am eating gluten free? How long must gluten be taken for the serological tests to be meaningful? The Gluten-Free Diet 101 - A Beginner's Guide to Going Gluten-Free Is celiac inherited? Should my children be tested? Ten Facts About Celiac Disease Genetic Testing Is there a link between celiac and other autoimmune diseases? Celiac Disease Research: Associated Diseases and Disorders Is there a list of gluten foods to avoid? Unsafe Gluten-Free Food List (Unsafe Ingredients) Is there a list of gluten free foods? Safe Gluten-Free Food List (Safe Ingredients) Gluten-Free Alcoholic Beverages Distilled Spirits (Grain Alcohols) and Vinegar: Are they Gluten-Free? Where does gluten hide? Additional Things to Beware of to Maintain a 100% Gluten-Free Diet What if my doctor won't listen to me? An Open Letter to Skeptical Health Care Practitioners Gluten-Free recipes: Gluten-Free Recipes

Medications And Personal Care Products For Asymptomatic Child?

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I've been dragging my feet on dealing with possible non-food sources of gluten. My daughter had chronic mild stomachaches, which have mostly cleared up since going gluten-free, and she has never had a noticeable gluten reaction since then.


Because she doesn't react (or at least not in a way we can clearly see), it's hard to know how careful we need to be. Do I need to worry about things like Children's Tylenol/Advil, shampoo, sunscreen, etc.? I know the official answer is "call the manufacturer," but did you really do that for every product your child uses? Is there a way to know which ones to be suspicious of?

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Yes you should be cautious, probably more so since your daughter does not show obvious signs of a reaction.


If you are just starting out, I would recommend Gluten Free Shopping Guides such as Triumph Gluten Free Shopping Guide or Cecelia's Gluten Free Shopping Guide.  Both can be found here at the Gluten Free Mall.  They are published annually and they will get you started on safe products.  But, please note that products can change their ingredients without notice, so do not depend on any listing for any extended period of time.



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You may find when she is prescribed something a pharmacy finds it easier to identify gluten-free name brands than generic.

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Do I need to worry about things like Children's Tylenol/Advil, shampoo, sunscreen, etc.? I know the official answer is "call the manufacturer," but did you really do that for every product your child uses? Is there a way to know which ones to be suspicious of?

 If there is a chance it will end up in her mouth, then yes, you should check it all. Advil and Tylenol is being consumed and should be checked (but I believe they are fine).  Kids often get shampoos in their mouths so I would check that, and that goes for lotions that are on her hands or face too.


It is accepted that gluten does not get into our skin, but our skin is our largest organ so I am careful about what I put on it because it does absorb some things otherwise there would be no such thing as medicated lotions.  I don't think gluten gets through - it is such a large molecule, but I am not positive without a doubt.

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This list is helpful. It can't include every drug that is gluten free.


target has started labeling some of the Target brand medications as gluten-free.

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I do it for myself, and of course if I had a child I would do it for them, as well.  The goal is to minimize the total exposure to gluten so that the total amount that gets by anyway does not trigger a reaction which causes internal damage, even if you cannot see it.  Many of the common, otc drugs are putting "gluten free" on the labels, like the generic store brand of ibuprofen we have right now. That's my bottle and my spouse is to stay out of it, (not that I take it much)  but he went ahead and purchased his own - gluten free.   Shampoos are easy once you find a brand you like, Dove, Dr. Bronners, Alafia, Garnier, etc, (or you can sometimes find a body wash that is gluten free, to use as a shampoo)  you just need to keep track if the label changes from one bottle to the next, and by using a search, "gluten free shampoos" you can find something available quickly.  Conditioners are more of challenge as they tend to load up a lot of them with either wheat germ oil, or oats (oats sativa can be cross contaminated, and some celiacs react to gluten-free oats anyway).  These conditioners are designed to leave a residue in the hair anyway, it's oil and difficult to remove, and they get spread all over the place with a towel, plus the shower spray is spreading it to the mucous membranes, so it is a mystery to me why anyone would deliberately take a bath in a liquid wheat product.   Pure apple cider vinegar mixed with water, 1 part vinegar to 7 parts water, makes a fantastic hair rinse/detangler.  A little bit of shea butter or coconut oil (tiny amounts, like about the size of a pea) can then be used, if you have dry or curly hair.    Sunscreen, the last three bottles I bought have had "gluten free" status, 2 of them it's right on the label.   Try a health food store if you are having problems with a regular store, but there should be something in the discount stores also with regular brands (as of last year, 2012, Banana Boat's sunscreen was gluten-free, but I don't know their current status on this year's  product).   In an emergency, you can also use just plain coconut oil as a sunscreen for a short period of time, it has a natural SPF of something like 4 or 6, or mix plain coconut oil with plain zinc oxide cream. (baby stuff tends to be good about listing the possible allergens right on the label)


Don't forget toothpaste and lip gloss need to be gluten-free, as well. 

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