How Can Latex Allergy Be Prevented
If you have latex allergy you should avoid direct contact with all products and devices that contain latex. Also avoid food that causes an allergic reaction. Latex allergy problems during dental, medical or surgical procedures can be prevented by warning health care providers about latex allergy before any test or treatment. Latex allergic people can receive medical or dental care in a latex-safe area. Hospitals and clinics that use only low protein latex gloves and non-latex gloves have experienced dramatic declines in new cases of latex allergy.
Allergists can provide latex-allergic people with information and assistance to help them avoid products which may contain latex. The American Latex Allergy Association also has additional information.
With the right treatment plan, youll understand how to manage your allergies, so you can be in control.
Im not afraid to go out there and have fun. I control my allergies. They dont control me.
What Are The Different Types Of Latex Allergy
A latex allergy can be caused by direct contact with latex gloves touching the skin or by inhaling airborne particles. The two types of direct contact allergies to natural rubber products include Type I IgE-mediated allergic reaction and Type IV cell-mediated contact dermatitis. Irritant contact dermatitis is a third type of reaction that is not caused by an allergy.
How Long Do Latex Allergic Reactions Last
If youre having an allergic reaction to latex such as from rubber gloves, it can be between one and three days before symptoms even appear. The rash from contact dermatitis can persist for days and even weeks in some instances. If your rash and blisters wont go away, its probably because youre continuously exposing yourself to latex. Take a few days away from rubber gloves or other sources of latex and your rash should calm down.
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How Long Do Symptoms Last
It depends on how severe of a reaction you had and how its been treated, if at all. People with a severe allergic reaction to latex may need to either carry injectable epinephrine with them at all times, or go to the E.R. for an immediate injection of epinephrine, the Mayo Clinic says. That injection should help stop your symptoms quickly. If you have a less severe reaction, your doctor may prescribe antihistamines or corticosteroids, which can help control your symptoms.
In the case of condoms, it can vary. If you consistently have a reaction following sex with latex condomsusually within a day and lasting one to four daysand the symptoms are not present otherwise or after sex without the latex condom, then an allergy should be suspected, Dr. Schaffir says.
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I Application Of Latex In Medical And Food Industries
With the advent of technical abilities to produce suitable and flexible natural rubber latex materials for commercial application, latex has been used to manufacture medical gloves for over 100 years. To prevent medical workers from dermatitis due to contact with chemicals, Dr. William Halsted, an American surgeon at Johns Hopkins Hospital, invented latex surgical gloves. In the 1980s, healthcare workers dramatically increased the use of latex gloves because of concerns of infectious agents . When compared with synthetic gloves , latex gloves appear to be stronger, more flexible, and protective, and hence are better acceptable by workers.
Today, rubber latex is present in many food and medical products. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved the application of natural rubber latex in food additives , food packaging , and medical devices . Table lists the regulations passed by FDA to allow the usage of natural rubber latex in food and medical industries as of September 1, 2014.
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Why Does A Latex Allergy Happen
When youre exposed to latex and you have a latex allergy, it causes a chain reaction in your body that starts in your immune system, the AAAAI explains. Your immune system, which controls how your body defends itself, overreacts by producing antibodies called Immunoglobulin E that can react with contaminating proteins found in latex. The antibodies then travel to cells that release chemicals, causing an allergic reaction in your body.
Its unclear why, exactly, some people develop a latex allergy, but the Mayo Clinic says that repeated exposure may increase sensitivity to the material. So people with spina bifida , health care workers, those who have been through several surgeries or medical procedures, and rubber industry workers are at the highest risk of having a latex allergy.
Just a heads up: There seems to be a link between having a latex allergy and reactions to certain foods, like avocados, chestnuts, kiwis, and bananas. Its likely because they have similar proteins to the ones in natural latex, according to the AAAAI. If those foods give you trouble, theres a chance you could have an issue with latex.
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How Is A Latex Allergy Diagnosed
Your healthcare provider will examine you and ask about your symptoms and exposure to latex. You should share information about other allergies you have, including reactions to foods. If you have a family history of allergies, tell your provider.
Your provider may order a blood test to check if youâre allergic to latex. Providers also use a skin prick test to diagnose a latex allergy.
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If You Are Allergic To Latex
Tips to coping with your latex allergy include the following:
Try to avoid all latex products. Use items that do not have latex in them.
If you need surgery or a procedure, talk to your healthcare provider about what you can do to prevent exposure and reactions to latex.
Wear a Medic-Alert bracelet or necklace with information about your allergy.
Carry a pair of nonlatex gloves with you, information about latex allergies, and/or a note from your healthcare provider.
Be sure medical and school records have a latex allergy alert.
For a child with a latex allergy, teach him or her to know and avoid latex products.
Ask your healthcare provider about self-injecting epinephrine . Have them at home, in the car, at school, day care, and work.
Know what to do in case of an emergency. Discuss this with your child’s provider and school nurse .
Avoiding latex may decrease the chance of children developing this allergy.
How To Get Rid Of Latex Allergy Rash
Every time I use to say that care is better than a cure. Same in latex allergy, allergy rash cannot be properly treated but avoiding rubber things can help to keep away the rashes to be severe.
For this type of condition medicated treatment is recommended by a dermatologist. But you can also slow down the condition by using some home remedies.
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What Is Natural Rubber Latex
Natural rubber latex comes from the sap of the rubber tree, Hevea brasiliensis, found in Africa and Southeast Asia. Allergic reactions to products made with latex develop in persons who become allergic to proteins contained in natural rubber latex. Natural rubber latex should not be confused with synthetic rubber made from chemicals. Synthetic rubber products, including latex house paints, are not made with natural latex and do not trigger allergic reactions in people who are allergic to products made with natural rubber latex.
Treating A Latex Allergy
There is no cure for a latex allergy, so the best treatment is avoidance. For mild reactions, your doctor may prescribe antihistamines to treat your symptoms. If you have a severe allergy to latex, injectable epinephrine can be used to prevent anaphylaxis.
Latex is so common in the modern world, it may be difficult to completely avoid exposure. Still, there are some things you can do to reduce contact. These include:
- using non-latex gloves
- telling daycare and healthcare providers about any latex allergies
- wearing a medical ID bracelet detailing any allergies
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What Are The Symptoms Of A Silicone Allergy
If you suspect that you have a silicone allergy, youll probably experience symptoms such as the following after coming into contact with silicone:
- Itchy and swollen bumps on the skin
- Swelling of hands, legs, or other body parts
- Eye infections. This can take the form of watery, red, or itchy eyes, and it occurs when the allergens enter the bloodstream
- Swelling of the airways and throat
- Severe asthma
Repeated exposure to silicone can lead to anaphylactic shock, a life-threatening emergency!
The above list is scary, but its worth bearing in mind that most people who have a silicone allergy will experience mild symptoms, usually what is known as contact-based allergic reactions.
Contact-based allergies mean that the skin will experience a reaction after touching the product, in this case a product made of silicone.
So, what you might find is that some of the symptoms in the above list will occur: red skin or a raised rash in the area of your body that came into contact with the silicone. You might also experience itchiness and swelling, as these are both common reactions.
If you find out that you have a silicone allergy, its important to avoid contact with all silicone products.
The problem is that silicone is in our daily lives as its become a popular material used in the production of many useful products. Heres a list of common silicone items that you might come into contact with on a regular basis.
These are just a few products that can contain silicone.
Where To Find Latex Gloves Alternatives
By the way, did you know that you can find latex glove alternatives in our store? Yes, itâs true. We have a full collection to provide safety for anyone allergic to latex gloves. Go here to see the different types of disposable gloves we have in stock and ready to ship.
Now that you know how to avoid an allergic reaction to latex gloves completely, what are your favorite non-latex glove alternatives?
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Lsr/lim And Other Industry Applications
Advances in material and injection molding technologies have enabled the medical/healthcare industry to improve the process of how companies manufacture medical devices. Silicone has replaced latex for a variety of products and devices, and in most cases, provides a safe latex alternative. The low cost of silicone makes it possible to efficiently and cost-effectively create gloves, gowns, syringes and many more products.
The processes for medical device approval include stringent regulatory requirements in the states and internationally. These processes help ensure the safety of the products for patients and healthcare workers. Its critical to have a person on your team that understands the intricacies of material selection, as well as how to choose the right molding process.
If you want your medical device to meet the required specifications, choose a company with knowledge of the needed internal policies and procedures. This includes implementation of an audit trail designed to lessen the chances of incurring a problem and an expensive product recall.
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How Common Are Latex Allergies
Latex allergies are rare. Less than 1% of people in the United States are allergic to latex. Latex allergies have decreased in recent years because more hospitals now use latex-free and powder-free gloves.
Anyone can develop a latex allergy, but some people have a higher risk of developing the condition. Risk factors for latex allergy include:
- Repeated exposure to latex: Frequent contact with latex can cause your body to overreact and develop an allergic reaction. People who regularly wear latex gloves are more likely to develop an allergy to latex. Healthcare providers, dentists and people who work in the beauty industry have a higher risk.
- Frequent surgical procedures: Children and adults who have had several surgeries have an increased risk of developing a latex allergy. Children with spina bifida are especially likely to have a latex allergy because treatment for the condition includes multiple medical procedures and surgeries at a young age. Medical supplies for these procedures often contain latex.
- History of allergies: Other allergies, including allergic rhinitis , often occur along with a latex allergy. People who are allergic to latex may be allergic to certain foods, including bananas, kiwis, avocados and chestnuts. The connection between latex allergies and food allergies is called latex-food syndrome.
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What Causes A Latex Allergy
In the late 1980s, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended universal precautions to protect healthcare workers from blood-borne pathogens. As a result, the use of latex-based medical supplies and gloves, which provide barrier protection, increased significantly. A rise in latex allergies followed.
Allergies are an abnormal response of the immune system against substances called allergens. Latex is an allergen, and regular contact with latex can cause allergies. This puts healthcare workers and patients who undergo multiple medical procedures at high risk because many medical supplies contain the material, including surgical and exam gloves, medical catheters and tubing, elastic bandages and wraps, and even stethoscopes.
Worldwide, the prevalence of latex allergy is 9.7% among healthcare workers and 4.3% among the general population.
Can You Eat At Restaurants With A Latex Allergy
For individuals with latex allergy, the challenge at restaurants is threefold:
- kitchen staff may use latex gloves while preparing food
- some foods have cross react with latex proteins
- restaurants may have latex balloons on display for parties or in banquet rooms
What can you do to safely navigate restaurants with a latex allergy?
First, share your latex allergy diagnosis with the hostess or manager. Find out if the kitchen staff uses latex gloves during any aspect of food preparation. If so, emphasize the severity of your allergy and the potential consequences if you are exposed you want to grab their attention.
Check out websites and menus of any restaurant you plan to visit. Many restaurants have already adopted a non-latex policy. This list includes Burger King, Quiznos, Dennys, Red Lobster, Outback Steakhouse, Red Robin, Arbys, Subway, Bahama Breeze, Dominos Pizza and Cracker Barrel Old Country Store. Disney World and Disneyland also have adopted a non-latex policy.
Higher risk situations are establishments with buffets , pre-made foods and eateries that frequently use banana, kiwi or avocado. Look for restaurants that have food allergy training for employees.
Notify the hostess and server of your latex allergy and review the menu for dishes that are unsafe. Bring a chef card with details of your allergy that the server can hand to the chef. By submitting this card, you dont have to rely solely on verbal communication passing from server to chef.
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Tips To Avoid Latex Allergy
- While washing dishes, cleaning and doing other household chores at home, wear non-latex gloves only.
- Make sure the clothes you wear do not contain any rubber soles or elastic waistbands. In addition, check that your swimsuits and socks are latex-free.
- Dont wear rubber rain boots and rain coats.
- Keep your bathroom clean from any rubber bath mats, toothbrushes with rubber grips.
- At work or at school, dont use erasers, use paper clips in place of rubber bands.
- Dont use craft items that contain latex, such as rubber cement and paint.
- If you need to wear gloves at work, such as at beauty parlors, restaurants, cleaning companies etc, switch to gloves made from a non-latex material.
- While visiting a hospital, clinic or medical office, call before your appointment and inform them about your latex allergy. Try to get the first appointment in the morning, as there are chances of having minimum latex particles in the air at that time. All the nurses, doctors and attendants should be aware of your allergy, so that they can arrange non-latex: IV tubing, stethoscopes and blood pressure cuffs.
- Check labels of everything without assuming that everything labeled as hypoallergenic is free from latex.
- Use latex-free condoms.
- Some people with latex allergies can develop reactions to certain food products, such as: bananas, apples, avocados, carrots, melons, papayas, tomatoes, celery, raw potatoes, kiwis and chestnuts. So, beware while consuming these products.
What Items Contain Latex
There are more than 40,000 products worldwide that contain latex and its often very difficult for people with latex allergy to perform everyday tasks and live a full, active life. Latex allergy generally develops after repeat exposure to medical and consumer products containing natural rubber latex.
The difficulty in managing latex allergy is that latex and latex proteins are found in so many common everyday products. For example, your daily mail may be wrapped in a rubber band there may be a celebration that includes latex balloons or the elastic waistband on underwear may cause a sudden and unexpected allergic emergency.
Additional products made with latex include:
- Rubber or latex exam gloves
- Elastic bands, physical therapy bands, rubber bands
- Dental dams
- Stethoscopes and blood pressure cuffs
- Pacifiers and baby bottle nipples
- Mouse pads
We have compiled a list of latex-free sports equipment and latex-free school product List.
If you are unsure whether a product contains natural rubber latex, you can use this sample letterto contact the manufacturer to find out if it contains latex.
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Use Alternatives To Prevent Allergy:
You can use some alternatives of latex to prevent its allergic reaction. In studies, it is precisely clear that health workers face this problem more commonly. To prevent them from latex allergy some alternatives are available to prevent this problem.
- The blood pressure cuff is made of latex that can become the reason of latex allergy rash. So try to use natural rubber products so that people can stay away from the allergy of latex.
- Synthetic polyisoprene used in place of latex, silicone, nitriles, and polyurethane can be used in the place of rubber latex products.
- Natural rubber products are preferable in the place of rubber latex.