Children can suffer from allergies just as well as adults. With allergy season in full swing, now is the time to start making preparations to protect your child’s delicate immune system and keep the sneezing, sniffling and watery eyes to a minimum.
Allergies are what happens when you have an overreaction in the immune system. The overreaction occurs with things that most people do not overreact to, such as cow’s milk, pollen, dust, wheat, cats, soy and others.
When someone is allergic to one of these allergens an antibody known as immunoglobulin E (IgE) is produced which causes basophils and mast cells to release different chemicals into the bloodstream. It is the chemicals that actually causes the allergic reaction, and the signs that come with allergies.
When the immune system tries to attack these allergens, there are many symptoms that occur. Allergies can range from mild to severe. For some people, allergies are so severe it causes life-threatening reactions.
Children with parents who have allergies are more likely to develop allergies themselves. It is hereditary but not all children who have parents with allergies will develop them. Sometimes children have allergies even if a parent does not.
The symptoms accompanying allergies varies from one child to the next. Most typical symptoms include itchy, watery eyes, difficulty breathing, tightness in the throat, nasal congestion, and sometimes nausea or vomiting.
A severe allergic reaction is also possible. Anaphylaxis the name of the condition and it is potentially deadly if it is not properly treated.
If you suspect that allergies are affecting your child it is important to schedule a trip to the pediatrician. A proper diagnosis is key in keeping your child allergy free and living a fulfilled life.
Make the doctor visit if allergy symptoms last more than one week, or if they become severe. The doctor will perform several different tests to determine if it is allergies as well as the allergen.
The treatment of the allergy is generally medications that treat the symptoms, since there isn’t a cure. These medications make it much easier to cope with the allergens. Both prescription and over the counter medications can be used in children for treatment.
Treatment choices include nasal sprays, allergy shots, antihistamines and eye drops. Allergy shots are usually reserved only for a few select hard to treat cases.
- A few additional ways to help your child deal with allergies:
- Keeping your child free and clear of the allergen is also a good way to keep the symptoms at bay.
- Keep cats and other pets out of the child’s rom.
- Keep dust out of your home to prevent dust mites.
- Wait until your child is not present to clean.
- Wash curtains and drapery so dander and dust doesn’t collect.
- Keep windows closed when pollen levels peak.
- Keep children away from moisture and damp areas inside of the home.