Allergies can be a child’s biggest enemy. They live in all of their favorite things, in their pets, their favorite park, even their own rooms. Allergies will prey and attack with stuffy noses and itchy eyes. An allergy is an overreaction of the immune system from seemingly harmless substances. According to Kids Health, 1 in 4 children is affected by allergies. It is always a good idea to get your child tested to allergens such as dust, pollen, and mold as those have less obvious complications than food allergies.
Allergies can inhibit your child’s daily routine within a single attack. It can keep them from eating, going to school and being active. It can also prevent you from finishing your routine as well. Allergy attacks often call for emergency doctors visits and heading to the pharmacy. While daily doses of allergy meds are the most common way to fight allergies, there are other ways to help prevent them.
One of those is eliminating clutter and vacuuming regularly. Washing bed sheets and doing laundry regularly is a must when getting rid of dust. When cleaning, encourage your child to wear protective masks and gloves. This can keep them from ingesting the very thing they are trying to get rid of. Dust follows us around the house, but pollen is carried with us whenever we return from being outside. Encouraging your child to take nightly showers and drink plenty of water can literally wash away a lot of allergens. Dust and dander hide in every corner of a room, so investing in an air purifier or hypoallergenic bedding can help your child carry on inside the home.
Pets may be a culprit to your child’s allergies. Although there is no such thing as a hypoallergenic pet, there are few dog and cat breeds that shed less, causing fewer allergies. If your pet is an allergen, giving it up may irritate your child more than occasional allergies. In that case, keeping allergies away can be done with regular baths and vacuuming of the pet hair and dander. Another solution would be to get less allergen inducing pets such as turtles, lizards, or fish. While avoidance is highly effective, it can make your child more vulnerable to an outbreak if in contact with the allergen again.
Outside the home is where most allergens live. If you like to stay active in nature, there are solutions to allergy free experiences. It’s best to plan vacations and outings during non-allergy seasons. Being outside in grassy areas can cause a flare up. In that case, head to the lake or the beach to avoid pollen attacks. Pollen counts are highest between 5 a.m. and 10 a.m., so plan your outings after then—it can improve your child’s day immensely.
If you’re looking for a more permanent cure to allergies, ask your doctor about allergy shots. With this method, your child has the chance to live a normal life and will be able to experience childhood like the rest of their friends. “Allergy shots have been shown to help 85% of people who go on them,” says Rachel Schreiber, MD, an allergist-immunologist. Immunotherapy is usually used for extreme cases in which normal remedies and over the counter methods do not work. Allergy shots are administered through one shot every week over a series of months. The shot itself exposes your child to a small dose of the allergen at a time to build resistance and immunity. Eventually the days of itchy eyes and stuffy noses will be behind them.