Parents hate to see their child suffer. Although allergies aren't extraordinarily painful, the discomfort and irritation can be visibly seen on your child's face. If your child has been suffering with Seasonal Allergies for awhile, and hasn't found any relief, you may also see a look of frustration.
- Runny or stuffy nose
- Dry or itchy throat
- Red, watery, or itchy eyes
In addition to the physical symptoms above, you may notice behavioral changes in your child as well. Irritability, tantrums, and not being able to sleep restfully, are sometimes noted.
What Seasonal Allergies Are
During Spring, Summer, or Fall naturally occurring substances become airborne. These minute particles are breathed in through the mouth or nose. Since the particles are foreign, your body sees them as invaders, and a chain of events begins to rid your body of these allergens. This battle against "good and evil" results in your child experiencing watery eyes, runny nose and a slew of other possibilities. Seasonal allergies are more common in children whose parents are also sufferers. Someone who is allergic to pollen has an increased chance of developing a sensitivity to other allergens such as dust mites or pet dander. If that happens, the seasonal allergy sufferer may become a perennial allergy sufferer, and may not find relief during ANY season. Also, keep in mind that children who suffer from mold allergies may see their symptoms re-emerge during the holiday season. A live or artificial Christmas tree can bring mold into your home, either from the storage area, or the great outdoors.
What Seasonal Allergies Are Not
Allergies are not contagious like colds and flu. Fevers are not associated with allergy symptoms. Allergies are also not something to take lightly. According to Dr. Leman Yel, chief of the UCI Medical Center Pediatric Allergy and Immunology Clinic, "Allergic rhinitis can lead to asthma, sinus infections, ear problems and mouth-breathing. It can also change the way soft facial bones develop, and cause swelling and dark circles under the eyes-a condition called 'allergic shiners.'"
What You Can Do to Help
If your child hasn't been diagnosed with allergies, and is experiencing the symptoms described above, an appointment with your pediatrician would be in order. The doctor will be able to determine exactly what allergies are making your child miserable. He can also suggest which medications to try using to help relieve your child's allergy symptoms. Be sure to inquire about the possible side effects that are possible with over-the-counter and prescription medications. For instance, drowsiness may be common side effect, but in some rare cases, children who've used nasal steroids, in high doses, have experienced growth suppression.
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