Allergies In Children: Types Causes Symptoms And Natural Remedies
An allergy is an excessive response of the immune system to certain substances that are not usually harmful. Allergies are often bothersome. In some caes, a severe allergic reaction can result in an anaphylactic reaction, which can be life-threatening. In fact, it is one of the reasons for children to miss school . As parents, knowing the kind of allergy your child has may help in taking precautions while also improving their quality of life.
In this MomJunction post, we tell you about different types of allergies in children, their causes, symptoms, and natural allergy relief methods.
Horizontal Nasal Line Indicates Possible Allergy
When children rub their nostrils up and down and wiggle their nose side to side, the movement creates a wrinkle or crease on top of their nose. Often, the line or crease is white or reddish in color. “If a child has been dealing with an itchy, sneezy, runny nose for weeks, and we see a horizontal line on the nose, we suspect allergies,” explains Dr. Lee. “That crease is pretty much exclusive to allergy sufferers who rub their nose.”
A Guide To Treating Toddler Seasonal Allergies
By Lauren Panoff, MPH, RD;
Lauren specializes in plant-based living and vegan and vegetarian diets for all ages. She specializes in writing about parenting and a wide variety of health, environmental, and nutrition topics.
When your child has the sniffles, coughs, or watery eyes it is a tell tale sign that they arent feeling well. A sick little one is the last thing any parent wants, and figuring out whats wrong is the first order of business. Milk allergies in babies are common, butthese symptoms in particular could be signs of seasonal allergies. Toddler seasonal allergies are quite common and can plague children year after year. Its important to determine the cause of their symptoms and a method of treatment early on to alleviate your toddlers discomfort.;
To help, weve put together this guide to treating toddler seasonal allergies so you can ensure your little one feels their best no matter the season.;
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What Are Common Triggers For Spring And Summer Allergies
Getting outside and enjoying the warmer weather is one of the few things families can do during this time of social distancing. However, the warming weather and blooming of plants can trigger allergies. Here are the top three spring and summer allergy triggers:
Allergy symptoms often look similar to those of the common cold. These allergy symptoms include:
- Sneezing and itching.
- Watery eyes.
Are you worried your childs allergies may be more severe than just allergies? With COVID-19 happening, its natural to worry know the difference between the two. Read more: What are the symptoms of COVID-19?
Diagnosing Seasonal Allergies In Kids
How do you know if your child has seasonal allergies? Its best to visit your childs pediatrician rather than self-diagnosing and risking treating your child with the wrong medication. When diagnosing allergies, your childs healthcare provider will take several factors into consideration:
Infants, toddlers, and younger children have a hard time tolerating a nasal spray so it is better to use oral antihistamines, like Allegra, Zyrtec, Claritin , Dr. Dass says.;
When children are old enough, an intranasal steroid is standard of care to help treat and prevent seasonal allergies, explains Dr. Dass.
Just be sure that you are using the version formulated for children, and the appropriate dosage for your childs age. While certain allergy medicines can mix safely with asthma medications, such as Singulair, its dangerous to double up on antihistamines if the first one you try doesnt relieve symptoms. You should always consult with a pediatrician before using OTC medications for your child.
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For severe allergies, allergy shots are helpful and can help you outgrow the allergies, explains Dr. Dass. We usually do not start allergy shots until the child is at least 5 or 6 years old to help prevent allergies. Further, by controlling allergies, you could potentially help your childs eczema and help prevent asthma from developing.
The following dosage chart is based on the manufacturers instructions:
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Other Allergies In Children
1. Pet allergy
Pet dander , urine, and saliva could be potential allergens . The symptoms of pet allergy may include a skin rash, runny nose or sneezing, coughing, difficulty in breathing, and itchy or red eyes.
The treatment varies based on the severity of the symptoms. The mild ones may go away by washing hands with soap and water. Vacuuming and keeping the house clean can help get rid of the pet dander. However, the severe symptoms may be treated by allergy shots . The child should preferably avoid the pet to prevent allergies in the long run.
2. Medicine allergy
Certain medications could cause mild to severe allergic reactions in children. The symptoms may include pimples or redness from different kinds of steroids, purple or red rashes from antibiotics , purple area due to certain blood-thinners, and blisters due to sulfa, penicillin, or some antibiotics . Allergic reactions are very common with antibiotics mainly penicillin groups. Always note what drugs your child is allergic too and avoid it next time.
Based on the severity of the symptom, drug allergies in children may be treated with epinephrine, antihistamines, or corticosteroids as prescribed by the doctor. If the medication is temporary, then the symptoms go away on suspending the dosage. Parents can also discuss with their childs doctor about alternative medicines that are unlikely to trigger an allergy.
Breathe In Some Steam
A steam treatment isnt just for spa day it can also help soothe your childs allergy symptoms. “Steam can help the same way Moms chicken soup can. Breathing in humidified air can help clear the nasal passageways and make it easier to breathe,” Stukus explains. “It can also be soothing for irritated mucous membranes in the nose, throat, and lungs.” To create an at-home steam treatment, try having your child sit in the bathroom with the door closed while you run a hot shower to offer some temporary relief from nasal congestion. Just make sure your child doesnt jump into a too-hot shower. You might also try using an over-the-counter saline nasal wash to help loosen mucus, the American Academy of Pediatrics suggests.
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Tips To Relieve Seasonal Allergy Symptoms In Babies And Toddlers
Allergy symptoms are no fun for kids, and if left untreated, they can lead to sinus and ear infections. See an allergist, who can figure out the triggers causing your little ones symptoms and recommend effective and safe treatments.
In the meantime, the best way to relieve sneezing, itching, runny nose and coughing in babies and toddlers is to try to avoid allergens whenever possible.
Here are a few tips to prevent and relieve seasonal allergy symptoms:
How To Know If Your Child Has Seasonal Allergies
Seasonal allergies can be difficult to diagnose because they often manifest in symptoms similar to the common cold such as runny noses, sneezing, coughing, and congestion, or in ways your little one cant express such as irritability, itchy ears and throat, and restlessness. Your child may exhibit just a few or many of these symptoms if they are experiencing allergies.;
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Skin Allergies In Children
Skin is the largest organ of the body and it can be affected by allergens .
Causes of skin allergies
Various substances and compounds could trigger an allergic reaction of the skin.
Symptoms of skin allergies
Some of the common signs of skin allergies are :
- Dry or itchy skin
Natural relief from skin allergies
Natural remedies may help treat some skin allergies or provide relief from the symptoms :
Don’t Skimp On Exercise
Even if your child is feeling a little under the weather because of allergy symptoms, its still good to promote physical activity. “Exercise is a great way to improve overall health and also reduce allergy symptoms,” Stukus explains. “Physical activity improves blood flow, increases breathing rate, and can serve as a wonderful distraction from annoying allergy symptoms.” The boost in circulation may improve the ability of immune system cells to travel throughout the body, according to the Harvard Medical School. However, if your child has outdoor allergies, avoid outdoor exercise on very high pollen days. Opt for fun indoor activities instead.
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Look Into Alternative Treatments
Some allergy sufferers swear by alternative home remedies for seasonal allergies. These include;butterbur , acupuncture,;spirulina;, stinging nettle, eucalyptus oil, and bromelain . There isn’t too much evidence on these treatments, so it’s best to conduct your own research and consult a doctor with any questions.
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What Are The Symptoms Of Seasonal Allergies In Babies And Toddlers
According to Chen, allergies can trigger a variety of symptoms. Here are some of the most common tell-tale signs:;
Watery and/or itchy eyes.
Runny or congested nose.
Frequent eye and nose rubbing. Toddlers often rub their faces when they have allergies, due to itchiness, says Chen.
Chen also notes that allergies can trigger asthma symptoms, including a cough, for some. According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America , allergic asthma , is the most common type of asthma, accounting for about 60% of people with asthma.;;
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Protect Your Kid’s Eyes
Itchy, red, teary eyes are one of the most aggravating symptoms of allergies. The itch stems from inflammation of the mucous membrane covering the whites of the eyes and inner eyelids. The fix: Keep pollen away from your child’s face. Edith Schussler, M.D., a pediatric allergist at Weill Cornell Medicine, in New York City, advises wearing sunglasses and a hat with a brim. Kids touch their face all the time, but with these accessories on, your child will be less likely to rub their eyes.
Allergies Vs Colds In Babies And Toddlers
Colds and allergies in babies and toddlers are actually pretty hard to tell apart. Both can cause runny noses, sneezing, coughing, watery eyes, congestion and headache.
So how do you distinguish cold symptoms vs. allergies? Take this quick test:
- How would you describe the consistency and color of your little one’s mucus?
- Watery and clear
- Does your child have a fever?
If you answered mostly “2,” your child likely has a cold or other respiratory infection. If most of your answers were “1,” you might be dealing with an allergy.
There are a few other telltale signs that help you to differentiate cold symptoms vs. allergies:
If your childs symptoms have been going on for a while, are getting more severe and/or are causing other things like moodiness, fatigue, headaches and general discomfort, make an appointment with the pediatrician. That way youll be sure to get a proper diagnosis of whether your child has a cold or allergies, along with recommendations for kid-safe medications or treatments.;
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How Do You Treat Seasonal Allergies
After youve taken steps to limit your childs exposure to allergy triggers, choose a treatment that addresses specific symptoms. For example, by alleviating itchy, blurry eyes, you can improve your childs sleep and mood.There are a number of prescription and over-the-counter medications that can help relieve seasonal allergy symptoms. Be sure to talk to your family pediatrician about the best option for your child.Read labels carefully for the active ingredient. Do not give your child more than one oral antihistamine at a time unless under the direction of a healthcare provider. However, most antihistamine eye drops and nose sprays can be given together along with an oral antihistamine.
Whats The Difference Between The Symptoms For Covid
âI think the first point would be that sometimes COVID-19 symptoms for children can be very different than the symptoms for adults, said Dr. Chawla. She explained the symptoms of COVID-19 for adults are: Cough, shortness of breath and fever.
âFor kids, that might look very different. It might just be a little bit of congestion, it might be nothing altogether, Dr. Chawla said. They may progress on to have cough and more cold-like symptoms and progress further. But that is a rare situation for kids.â
Dr. Chawla explained the difference between allergies and COVID-19 is with allergies you get: Profuse runny nose, itchy watery eyes, a lot of nasal drip and sneezing. Those arent the symptoms youll see with COVID, Dr. Chawla said.
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When Should You Consult A Doctor
Although using over-the-counter medication can be a great help in reducing seasonal allergy symptoms, it is sometimes just not enough. If this is the case, it may be wise to consult a doctor, who may prescribe medication to better help your child.;;
Whats more, if seasonal allergies exacerbate other health problems, such as asthma or eczema, your doctor may want to adjust the medication to better control these issues.;
If treatment is ineffective, immunotherapy treatment to desensitize your child may be conducted by an allergist. This treatment includes injecting the affected person with increasing doses of the allergic substance over a period of three to five years in order to make the allergic person less sensitive to the cause of the allergy. This treatment is particularly effective in the case of children who are very allergic to pollen, but it must be followed carefully. ;;;
You should consult a doctor without delay if your child:
- has trouble breathing;
- has a general skin reaction, such as swelling, red plaques or small bumps;
- displays any other abnormal or alarming symptom.
Seasonal Allergies: The Tip Of The Iceberg
Little is still known about the causes of allergies, which are many. Atopy is a hereditary predisposition to allergies that afflict many children. Children with this hypersensitivity can suffer from different allergies or illnesses at various stages in their development. In this context, it is generally recognized that seasonal allergies often go hand in hand with other early childhood diseases, such as:
- food allergies;
The first signs of allergies are often food allergies and eczema that can be seen on nursing infants. A little later in infancy, symptoms of allergic rhinitis can develop.
If your child suffers from asthma or eczema, the symptoms might temporarily worsen during the seasonal allergy period. Sometimes it may be necessary to increase medication when this happens: the child will have to use an asthma inhaler more often, or apply more eczema cream or unguent.
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Triggers Of Nasal Allergies
- Cause. An allergic reaction of the nose and sinuses to an inhaled substance. The medical name for this is allergic rhinitis. The allergic substance is called an allergen.
- Most allergens float in the air. That’s how they get in the nose. Here are the common ones:
- Pollens. Trees, grass, weeds and molds are the most common pollens. Tree pollens come in the spring. Grass pollens come in the summer. Weed pollens come in the fall. Pollens cause seasonal allergies. You can’t avoid pollens because they are in the air. Most nasal allergies continue through the pollen season. They can last 4 to 8 weeks. Pollens cause seasonal allergic rhinitis. This is also called hay fever.
- Pets. Allergens can also be from cats, dogs, horses, rabbits and other animals. Most people don’t keep a pet that they are allergic to. They only have sporadic allergy symptoms when they are exposed to that specific animal. These symptoms will usually last a few hours. If someone with a cat visits you, they will bring cat dander with them. This will cause brief symptoms. If you own the pet, though, your child will have symptoms all the time.
- House Dust. House dust contains many allergens. It always contains dust mites. If your humidity is high, it will contain mold. House dust causes year round, daily symptoms. The medical name for this is perennial allergic rhinitis.
Symptoms Of Seasonal Allergies In Toddlers & Its Natural Remedies
Toddlers are more sensitive and have a weaker immune system when compared to the elders. Most toddlers common suffer from minor infections and allergies. Seasonal allergies in toddlers are very common these days and is becoming a matter of concern. Knowing the symptoms of;seasonal allergies in toddlers can help to identify and manage the condition well. Some natural remedies for seasonal allergies in toddlers are also found to be useful in many cases.
There are many factors, which influence the ways in which natural and synthetic substances affect the toddlers. As toddlers are generally considered to be more sensitive, seasonal allergies are more common in toddlers. Environmental factors play an important role in causing seasonal allergies, due to the presence of particulate matter, pollen, animal dander, dust, smoke, etc. Also, the use of chemicals and preservatives, in the form of perfumes, cleaners, dyes and other pollutants is on the rise, which increases the risk of seasonal allergies in toddlers.
Seasonal allergies in toddlers present with characteristic symptoms, which need to be identified at early stages. If the condition worsens and results in breathing problems, it can be difficult to manage. Timely treatment of seasonal allergies in toddlers is important to prevent complications and natural remedies can also be of great help.
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