There are several factors that make the identification of gluten intolerance symptoms in children difficult. The symptoms of gluten intolerance experienced by children tend to be, in many ways, similar to the symptoms of gluten intolerance experienced by adults. What tends to be tricky is the diagnosis: that is, the association of the specific symptoms with gluten intolerance. We venture to examine the specific reasons as to why we have this scenario: in other words, factors that make the identification of these symptoms (in kids) so tricky.
Firstly, the identification of gluten intolerance symptoms in children is made difficult by the fact that children are not usually very articulate. Put otherwise, the kids tend to be unable to describe what they are feeling. Indeed, some of the children turn out to be too young to communicate through speech at all. So the people trying to pick out the symptoms of gluten intolerance symptoms end up being faced with two challenges. The first challenge is that of picking out the symptoms: that is, understanding what is wrong with the kid. The second challenge is that of making an association between the symptoms identified and the consumption of wheat products/gluten rich foods.
Secondly, the identification of gluten intolerance symptoms in children is made difficult by the fact that these symptoms mimic those of many other ailments that children struggle with. On account of this fact, it becomes very hard to pin down the symptoms to gluten intolerance.
Thirdly, the identification of gluten intolerance symptoms in children is made difficult by the fact that the children don’t usually have the right levels of self awareness. Thanks to this state of affairs, the children are not in a position to note the patterns through which the symptoms can be associated with the consumption of gluten. In this regard, children are unlike adults, who are almost always in a position to see the connection between their consumption of certain foods, and the manifestation of certain symptoms. With kids, it normally takes the intervention of parents, to note these patterns. But you have to remember that in all these situations, the parents are not the ones experiencing the symptoms. They can only rely on the kids’ accounts of what they (the kids) are experiencing. Sometimes, even such accounts are not forthcoming – when, for instance, the kids turn out to be too young to speak. So the parents have to ‘guess’ what may be wrong with the kids, and then go ahead to guess what may be causing problems. In most of these situations, the last thing that is likely to come to mind is gluten intolerance. In many cases, the parents are not able (at all) to associate the symptoms with gluten intolerance.
Normally, only an experienced pediatrician is able to arrive at the conclusion that the discomfort being experienced by a given child must be on account of the common gluten intolerance symptoms in children. This is usually after undertaking quite a bit of what is referred to as differential diagnosis – to come to the conclusion that the symptoms can only be manifestations of gluten intolerance. By the time this sort of diagnosis is made, the kid is likely to have suffered considerably.