Allergies in children are very common, and the symptoms often get mistaken for that of a simple cold. Because the symptoms are easily overlooked, they can be written off assuming your child is coming down with a bug or feeling tired from school, after school activities, and so on.
Parents who are curious about their child’s allergies are in the right place. We know that taking care of your little ones is always a top priority, so kudos to you for doing your research! In this post we’re going over everything you need to know about child allergies, including the signs, treatment options, and what you can do to help your child find relief.
As the name suggests, seasonal allergies come and go with the seasons. In the springtime when flowers and trees are in bloom they release significant amounts of pollen into the air. As children spend time outdoors, they inhale the pollen and are exposed to a possible trigger. Allergies also come into play during the summer months when grass is growing. Finally, the fall months produce ragweed and mold allergies that cause allergy sufferers to feel miserable for months.
Perennial allergies can pop up at any time throughout the year. These allergies are triggered by year-round allergens that can worsen your child’s allergies at any moment. These include cockroaches, rodents, mold, and dust mites. These types of allergies and asthma go hand in hand, so managing your child’s perennial allergies is imperative to keeping them healthy.
The most common food allergies in children are typically caused by peanuts, tree nuts, wheat, soy, milk, fish, shellfish, and eggs. Symptoms from these allergies can range from mild effects like itchy ears to severe complications such as anaphylaxis.
Unfortunately for animal lovers, pets can also cause child allergies. Animals that shed dander are capable of causing an allergic reaction to your child’s immune system. In addition, allergies can occur if children come into contact with the pet’s urine or saliva — which happens more than you’d like to think. The good news is pet allergies can be managed with a little bit of strategy and effort, so there’s no need to re-home your pet or tell your child they can never have a furry pet!
Thinking of getting a household pet? Check out our recommendations for allergy-free dog breeds that make great pets!
Perhaps your child says their eyes are itchy, or that their throat feels scratchy. Maybe they can’t stop sneezing or coughing. Listen to your child’s symptoms and take note of what they were doing, or what they were exposed to, just before they began feeling sick. Child allergies bring about the same symptoms in adults, but children aren’t capable of properly explaining how they feel or pinpointing what’s wrong. It’s up to you, the parent (or guardian!), to be their eyes and ears when they’re not feeling well. Other possible child allergy side effects include moodiness, difficulty concentrating, trouble sleeping, fatigue, and behavioral problems.
This is one of the most obvious signs your child does have allergies and not a cold or some other type of viral infection. A fever is not common with child allergies. So if a higher than normal body temperature is present, put away the OTC allergy medication because it won’t do much!
If your child has symptoms that last for more than a couple weeks, it’s likely allergies they’re dealing with. As mentioned, allergies can come and go and continue to bother your child for as long as they’re exposed to whatever allergen is the culprit. You may also notice that they tend to get sick around the same time each year, another sign of seasonal child allergies!
Allergies are not contagious, so pay attention to how your little one’s classmates are feeling. If other students are calling out sick around the same time, it’s more likely some sort of bug going around the class.
Be sure to keep a close eye on your child’s appearance. Are they suddenly developing dark circles under their eyes? This is known as allergic shiners. While this may be mistaken for lack of sleep, it can also indicate sinus congestion which turns the skin under the eyes a subtle dark shade. When suffering from allergies, your child may also have a horizontal crease across their nose. Indicating that they frequently rub their nose due to allergy discomfort!
Depending on the type of allergies your child is dealing with, an allergist will recommend a specific allergy test in order to diagnose them properly. Blood tests, several types of skin tests, and a food elimination diet can determine the exact allergen your child has a reaction to. When taking the test, your child may feel a little uneasy. Assure them that the test will help them feel better by explaining how it works, in a child-friendly way, of course!
If your child’s allergies are mild, you may be able to manage their symptoms with natural remedies for the most part. Simply keep your child away from whatever allergen is bothering them and that should help. However, this can be difficult if the allergen is airborne or coming from a beloved pet.
On the other hand, symptoms caused by seasonal allergies may respond well to consuming a small amount of local honey on a daily basis. The rule of thumb is to purchase honey that is collected as close to your home as possible. This way, your child will ingest a small amount of the local pollen that triggers their allergies.
Keeping your home clean is another easy method in attempting to manage your child’s allergies. Do keep in mind that there is no guarantee natural remedies like these will help. Alternatively, treating the root cause of the symptoms is the best way to manage child allergies. More on that below!
Immunotherapy is a standard form of allergy treatment that desensitizes the immune system to whatever allergen it is reacting to. This can be done in several ways with weekly injections, daily drops, or regular application of topical creams.
Here at ShotFree Allergy, we personally think topical creams are the best way for children to be willing to stay on top of their immunotherapy. Be honest, does your kid enjoy getting a shot at the doctor’s office? We didn’t think so!
Our transdermal immunotherapy is prescribed and compounded by one of the trusted pharmacies we partner with. Once your child’s topical formula is created, it’s shipped directly to your home. With so much going on in the world, it just makes sense to keep things like this simple! To get started on treating child allergies, get in touch with us below.