Friday, June 18, 2010

Hell of a Day...

Actually, it started yesterday. I took the kids to the YMCA pool for the first time this summer. Now, keep in mind, I did this frequently last summer, and they were all one year younger. But even so, something has changed between now and then that has apparently made it more difficult for me to do this by myself. Everything was going okay until it was time to change them out of their swimsuits and into their clothes. I had called ahead of time to ask about bringing Connor into the women's dressing room with me, because last year some of the girls had an issue with it. Well, I pulled the autism card and told the director that he needs my help getting dressed. Which is true, but I still hate having to do that. Anyway, I was told that it would be okay as long as I took him into one of the stalls--either the toilet stalls or the shower stalls. I chose the handicapped toilet stall because it had the most room, and I swear it was 180 degrees in there. So I'm taking Connor's swim shirt off, Dylan is impatiently waiting for me to help him ("Mommy, I'm tiiiiired of being wet."), and Addi says, "Mommy, I have to peepee!" And I'm ready to throw up my hands and quit. We somehow got through it, with me taking lots of deep breaths and trying to ignore the sweat dripping down my forehead. Other people do this. Why can't I do this without having a nervous breakdown?

So Michael got home from work a little early, at which point storytime was completely forgotten about because who needs Mommy to read a story when "YAY! Daddy's home!", and reminded me that he had a Wildlife Club meeting that night. Fan-tastic. I made the kids dinner and gave them baths, and it was then that I noticed Dylan's cheek looked a little puffy. Well, last time his cheek looked puffy like that, it turned out he had a humongous amount of impacted earwax in his ear. It took two nurses holding him down for the doctor to get it out. Dylan was screaming bloody murder the entire time, and Addi was covering her ears and shaking. It was awful. It didn't help that we had to see Dr. B that day because Dr. S was off, and Dylan isn't used to Dr. B and is much more comfortable with Dr. S. Anyway, I tried to get him to put eardrops in his ear (After that happened, Dr. B told me to buy one of those over-the-counter earwax removal kits.), but he wouldn't let me anywhere near him with it. I told him he'd have to go to the doctor, which he wasn't happy about, but he still wouldn't let me put the drops in, so I told him it was bedtime.

I woke up this morning still thinking it was earwax and ready to call the doctor. Until he woke up. The entire left side of his face was swollen, and he said it hurt. I thought maybe he had been stung by a bee at the pool or that something bit him. I called the doctor's office and made him an appointment. Thank the Goddess for my mother-in-law, who let Connor and Addi stay with her! When we got there, Dr. S looked him over and said she didn't see anything out of the ordinary with his ears or his throat, but she thought his gums looked swollen. She thought it was an abscessed tooth, so she had me call the dentist from her office. She wanted him seen today, and if our dentist couldn't work him in, she was going to call one she knows. Luckily, our dentist was able to see him at 3:00. We had a little time, but not enough time to go back home (our dentist is an hour away, in Lexington), so I took Dylan to get ice cream.

The dental assistant looked in Dylan's mouth but said she couldn't tell what was causing the swelling, so she wanted to wait for the dentist. While we were waiting, Dylan decided his cheek felt better and that we could just go home.  ;)  Dr. C looked in Dylan's mouth and nothing jumped out at him, so he decided to take an x-ray. After looking at the x-ray, he still didn't know what could be causing the swelling. He said the tooth and gums looked normal, and that he was stumped. He referred us to an oral surgeon in Irmo, who wanted us to come right away. Back over the dam we went, in record time. Yeah, I was speeding just a little, but we had to get there before the office closed. I didn't want to have to wait until tomorrow.

Well, Dr. W took one look at the x-ray and said he didn't think it was dental at all. He wanted to talk to Dr. S, so I gave him her number, but she had already left for the day. He talked to her nurse, and when he came back, he suggested that Dylan has an infection, most likely caused by bacteria entering the sinus cavities. (I looked it up on WebMD, and cellulitis is what he was describing.) He prescribed Augmentin and told us to follow up with Dr. S. I talked to the nurse, and she said if the swelling increases or if he starts running a fever, take him to the ER immediately. If the swelling goes down tomorrow, the follow-up can wait until Monday, but if the swelling doesn't go down, I have to take him tomorrow. Augmentin is good for penicillin-resistant bacteria, so it should work regardless of whether the cellulitis is caused by Staph aureus or Haemophilus influenzae. (I'm thinking Staph aureus since he's up-to-date on his Hib shots.)

I swear, I felt like we were in an episode of House today! "It's NOT Lupus!" It's kind of a scary feeling when the doctors don't know what's wrong with your child. But after reading the information on WebMD, I feel better, because if it is cellulitis, the Augmentin should clear it up in a few days. I know it's easy to make fun of WebMD and people who use it to self-diagnose, but I'm really thankful for the technology of the Internet to help me better understand a doctor's diagnosis. Because we all know the doctor is in and out in less than five minutes and doesn't have time to answer questions.  :::eyeroll:::

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