Having allergies can be uncomfortable. It can affect anyone – especially kids. When you have a child with allergies, you may worry too much because it can cause them to have symptoms in response to many different exposures in different environments. Allergies in children can be related to using certain medications, eating certain foods as well as to exposure to allergens in the environment. When a child has an allergy, it causes their immune system to overreact to substances that are harmless to children without allergies.
With allergies, the human body becomes sensitized to different allergens by producing allergic antibody call immunoglobulin E in specific response to a small protein in the allergen. These antibodies then bind to allergic cells called mast cells and then upon reexposure to the offending allergen, it is recognized by the antibody on mast cells and causes them to become activated and release chemicals like histamine which cause the clinical symptoms ranging from mild to rarely fatal as in the case of anaphylaxis.
Most Common Causes of Child’s Allergy
Respiratory allergies in children can be triggered by:
- Insect bites or stings
- Animal hair or fur
- Dust mites or molds
Some children are not allergic and have the same symptoms – this is called non-allergic rhinitis and can be triggered by:
- car exhaust
- weather changes, barometric or temperature changes
If a child has been sensitized to foods, this can cause reactions like hives, swelling, vomiting, diarrhea or dizziness and can be triggered by:
- foods like peanuts, eggs, milk and dairy products
How To Combat Your Child’s Allergies
In severe cases, allergies can be life-threatening especially if a child suffers from anaphylaxis. This reaction may cause a child or adult to faint, have trouble breathing, have hives or swell in the mouth, face or throat. If left untreated, it can be fatal. If your child is diagnosed with allergies, it is best that you know ways to make the situation better. Here are 3 ways to combat your child’s allergies:
- Inform your child about the allergy
Convey the message in an appropriate way. Remember, your child may not take the allergy seriously. You need to provide a consistent message to keep your child safe while ensuring that he/she is comfortable and it doesn’t affect his/her daily activities. This way, they will also be cautious about the foods they ingest as well as the things they come in contact with.
- Provide help all the time
Reinforce your child by helping them to understand the situation. Make them feel loved all the time and let them know that you and the rest of the family will be there to support him/her and help him/her however you can. When the child is aware that he or she can count on the family members, he or she will also feel secure.
- Get help from the professional
Allergies can cause discomfort to your child. It is important to always seek help from an expert. During a check-up, your physician or your child’s pediatrician will try to determine the root cause of the allergy by reviewing your family history, the foods that the child had recently eaten, or the possible allergens that the child had come in contact with. This will enable the doctor to find the best treatment that suits your child’s lifestyle to control the specific allergy. Treatments can range from lifestyle changes to taking antihistamines, decongestants, and allergy shots or in the case of foods, oral immunotherapy.