She tried seeing many doctors, including dermatologists, and when the solutions didn’t work, Yong turned to alternative practices such as naturopathy, and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). Shan Min got prescribed TCM herbs which were boiled and mixed into her meals.
When Shan Min started solids, all her meals were cooked from scratch and Yong made records of all the ingredients and everything her child ate.
At 11 months old, when Shan Min weaned off breast milk, Yong found milk alternatives and made healthy wholesome meals daily.
“At night, I would sit down with an A4 folder and pore over the daily records – what she ate and her skin condition each day. This way I could identify trends and spot potential allergens. Our goal was to formulate a list of ‘safe’ foods that we knew for certain wouldn’t cause her to itch, while meeting her nutritional needs.”
LITTLE WARRIORS – AN IDEA BORN OF DESPERATION
The only thing which stopped her daughter from scratching herself bloody was protective garments with mittens that did not have any embellishments, Velcro, zippers or buttons.
At wits’ end, Yong asked her husband to source for garments that could protect Shan Min’s skin while keeping her comfortable in Singapore’s heat. The garments also needed to include padded mittens to stave off scratches from the baby’s nails.
Yong’s mental health was hanging by a thread. “At that time, I was struggling mentally and crying every night for the pain my children were going through.”