We’re battling a renewed outbreak of yeast. That’s why Martin’s attention has dipped so low. I’m certain now. All the signs point to yeast. He’s scratching his legs. He’s grinding his teeth. His pee stinks. His energy flags. He has trouble settling to sleep. He giggles drunkenly.
Finally realizing that yeast is at work here (again) stirs mixed emotions. On one hand, I’m beyond frustrated. We started fighting yeast in February, and by the beginning of summer we had it under control. I even allowed more carbohydrates to sneak into Martin’s diet. Not many, but more—quinoa pitas, rice crackers, banana muffins. On my mental checklist, “balance yeast” had thick line through it. But now yeast is out of whack again, and I’m learning that as soon as one strain is defeated, another may flourish.
On the other hand, I’ve expended so much attention on Martin’s diminished attention without knowing the cause. I’m relieved that we have a culprit now. The yeast realization provides a roadmap. We conquered yeast once before, and we’ll do it again, adjusting diet and anti-yeast supplements (sac boulardii, &c.) as necessary.
Indeed, pinpointing yeast helps me filter Martin’s current issues. Yeast clearly does no favors for attention, energy, or language; I’ll call those the “yeastier areas,” and admit that they’re in bad shape. Yeast doesn’t seem to affect body control or mood as much. I posted several days ago about what’s going right, even now. To that list I will add that Martin is steady on his feet, engaging in few self-stimming behaviors, transitioning well, and more or less happy. I’ll call those the “less-yeasty areas,” and hope that their current chart-topping performance means we’re making progress despite the yeast flare.
I’ve said before: It’s an amorphous enemy, this autism. ASD is defined by symptoms, not causes. The causes may differ for every child, and they may change within one child.
Then again, every child—neurotypical or otherwise—is different, too, and every child changes throughout life. When we’ve finally wiped out autism, Martin will create some new worry to keep me up at night.
Well, bring it on.