On the rise at your local allergy and asthma clinic: food allergies in children, to the tune of an increase around 50 percent between 1997 and 2011. That’s one in every 13 children, over 38 percent of which have a history of severe allergic reactions. Is your child effected by this potentially deadly issue?
Food allergy suspects: Repeat offenders
The most common food allergens seen in an allergy and asthma clinic are allergies to milk, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, soy, wheat, fish and shellfish. These eight foods account for 90 percent of all reactions. Even trace amounts can cause an allergic response. With over 30 percent of children with food allergies having sensitivities to multiple items, that’s a huge possibility of allergic reaction.
Keep kids safe – learn the signs of food allergies!
Within minutes to up to two hours after eating, food allergy reactions may be mild to severe, including…
- Hives or itchy skin rashes.
- Swelling of the lips and face.
- Swollen, itchy, watery eyes.
- Swelling of the mouth or throat.
- Runny nose.
- Repetitive cough.
- Wheezing or difficulty breathing.
- Stomach cramps, vomiting, or diarrhea.
Handling a severe food allergy reaction in your child
Every 3 minutes, someone is seen in an emergency room for a food allergy. To keep your child from becoming a statistic, it pays to be proactive.
- Identify food allergies with the help of your local allergy and asthma clinic.
- Consider medical identification jewelry.
- Don’t take chances with problem foods. Reactions can worsen, and allergy medications are not foolproof.
- When eating away from home, always read labels and ask questions to ensure food safety.
- If you are at risk of severe food allergy reactions or anaphylaxis, keep doses of epinephrine (adrenaline) on you at all times for administration via auto-injector.
- Make sure prescriptions are up-to-date.
- Ensure your child, family members, and those who see your child on a regular basis (teachers, coaches, etc.) are aware of your child’s food allergy, as well as how and when to administer emergency medication.
- If your child experiences a severe allergic response, don’t wait, treat symptoms immediately!
- ALWAYS call 9-1-1 immediately following an anaphylactic reaction, even if medication appears to have resolved symptoms.
Food allergies don’t have to take over your life. Avoid anaphylaxis and effectively manage food allergies with the help of your local allergy and asthma clinic today!
“Facts and Statistics.” Retrieved July 21, 2015, from http://www.foodallergy.org/facts-and-stats.
“Allergy Statistics.” Retrieved July 21, 2015, from http://www.aaaai.org/about-the-aaaai/newsroom/allergy-statistics.aspx
“Food Allergy Training Guide for Hospital and Food Service Staff.” Retrieved July 21, 2015, from http://www.foodallergy.org/document.doc?id=149
“About Anaphylaxis.” Retrieved July 21, 2015, from http://www.foodallergy.org/anaphylaxis
“FAACT Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Connection Team Brochure.” Retrieved July 21, 2015, from http://www.foodallergyawareness.org/media/faactbrochure/FAACT%20Brochure.pdf