Posts for tag: Allergies
The doctors at Southwestern Pediatrics in Maricopa, AZ, are here to help your child if they are struggling with allergies.
What are allergies?
An allergic reaction is the body's immune system responding to an allergen it perceives as a threat. The two main things that cause allergic reactions are food and environmental allergens. When your child has an allergic reaction, their immune system is reacting to the allergen to attack it and this causes different symptoms depending on the allergen. Visit Southwestern Pediatrics in Maricopa, AZ, if your child has any of the following symptoms:
Allergic reactions from food have these symptoms:
- Swelling of the face and tongue
- Stomach irritation
- Shortness of breath
- Mouth itchiness
Environmental allergies like pollen and pet dander cause the following symptoms:
- Watery eyes
- Itchy eyes
- Runny nose
- Shortness of breath
Does my child have allergies?
If your child has symptoms of allergies, an allergy test can determine what the immune system is reacting to. Allergy tests are administered by testing tiny patches of skin with different potential allergens. If the skin reacts to the substance, the child is allergic. Knowing what allergens are causing reactions is the first step to managing the symptoms.
How does a pediatrician treat allergies?
The best way to avoid allergic reactions is to avoid the allergen itself. This is sometimes difficult, but there are medications available to help manage symptoms when you can't avoid an allergen. Several medications can help manage reactions to seasonal and animal allergies.
Allergic reactions can range from presenting mild to severe symptoms. In severe cases, a patient may need an emergency injection like an EpiPen. These injections can save lives in cases of a dire allergic reaction.
The professional staff at Southwestern Pediatrics can test your child for allergies and help you manage the symptoms. Contact us in Maricopa, AZ, at 520-568-9500.
Sneezing. Watery eyes. Stuffy nose. These could just be symptoms of a cold or these could be signs that your child has allergies. If you notice that your child’s symptoms flare-up during certain times of the year then this could definitely be a sign of seasonal allergies. Unfortunately, allergies can impact everything from performance in school to participating in outdoor activities such as school sports. If you suspect that your child may have allergies it’s important to talk with your pediatrician.
Childhood Allergy Symptoms
Allergy symptoms can also seem a lot like a cold or other upper respiratory problems. Common symptoms associated with allergies include:
- Watery, red, and itchy eyes
- Itchy nose
- Dark circles under the eyes or puffy eyelids
- Ear pain and chronic ear problems
- Nasal congestion
- Facial pain and pressure
- Persistent cough
- Chest tightness
So, how can you tell that your child is dealing with allergies and not an infection? Some telltale signs include itchy eyes and nose, which are classic signs of allergies. If your child has a fever this is usually a sign of an infection and not allergies. Unlike a cold, allergy symptoms can last for weeks. You may also notice that your child’s symptoms come and go, appearing more often during the spring and fall months. Again, this is a trademark of childhood allergies.
Treating Childhood Allergy
There are many ways in which a pediatrician can help your child manage their allergy symptoms, and the treatments that are recommended will depend on the type and severity of your child’s symptoms. Most treatment plans include a variety of lifestyle changes and medication. Children with minor symptoms may find relief through over-the-counter antihistamines and decongestants, while other children may require a prescription-strength allergy medication to tackle more moderate to severe symptoms.
Lifestyle modifications may include using a dehumidifier in your child’s bedroom, wearing glasses instead of contacts during allergy seasons, bathing immediately after being outdoors, limiting outdoor activities during high pollen counts, and keeping pets out of bedrooms (if your child suffers from pet dander allergies).
For severe or unresponsive allergies, your pediatrician may recommend immunotherapy, or allergy shots. Allergy shots may be a good option for your child when other treatment options and medications have not been successful.
Are your child’s allergy symptoms impacting their daily routine? If so, our pediatricians can help them manage their symptoms so they can get back to enjoying days on the playground and time spent with family.
How your pediatrician in Maricopa, AZ, can help
Allergies are a common problem for children and can cause all kinds of symptoms. Fortunately, your pediatrician can help. Dr. Anthony DiGeorge, Sultan Ayoub FNP and Lisa Baba FNP at Southwestern Pediatrics in Maricopa, AZ, offer a full range of services including allergy testing and treatment to help your child feel better.
So, how do you know if your child has allergies? There are a number of signs and symptoms you may notice, including:
- Coughing and sneezing
- Itchy, watery eyes
- Runny nose and sore throat
- Itchy, irritated skin or rashes
If your child experiences breathing problems, this can be a sign of a potentially deadly allergic reaction known as anaphylactic shock, and should be treated as a medical emergency.
If your child has food allergies, your child may have a stomach ache, nausea, vomiting, and other gastrointestinal symptoms.
A foreign substance, called an allergen, causes allergy symptoms. When your child is exposed to this foreign substance, your child has an allergic response, causing the symptoms. Sometimes it can be difficult to determine what your child is allergic to. That’s where allergy testing comes in. Some common allergens to be tested for include:
- Plant, grass, and tree pollen
- Mildew, mold, and spores
- Dust mites, pet hair, and pet dander
Once your Maricopa, AZ, pediatrician has determined the cause of your child’s allergies, you can take steps to help your child avoid the allergen. Your pediatrician may also recommend effective allergy treatments including:
- Allergy shots
- Sublingual immunotherapy drops
- Prescription strength antihistamine medications
- Prescription strength decongestant medications
- Steroid nasal sprays and nasal lavage
- Inhalers and other breathing aids
Allergies can make your child uncomfortable and sick. Chronic allergies can cause additional problems like ear, nose, and throat infections. Don’t wait to seek out the help of the experts. Just pick up your phone and call (520) 568-9500 to schedule an appointment with one of the pediatricians at Southwestern Pediatrics in Maricopa, AZ.
Your five-year-old child is sneezing and coughing. Her eyes are watery and puffy. This can't be another cold, can it? Maybe it's not a viral infection but rather something which plagues millions of children. This could be allergies, and your pediatricians at Southwestern Pediatrics in Maricopa, AZ, can help. Your "kid doctor," Dr. Anthony DiGeorge, and his caring, professional team decipher allergic symptoms and formulate treatment plans that work.
Allergies are the human body's response to certain environmental triggers--things ingested, touched, or inhaled. While these substances are not toxic by nature, the child's immune system over-reacts to them, secreting histamines and other microscopic substances which produce symptoms such as:
- Shortness of breath
- Watery, itchy eyes
- Hives (red, itchy, raised skin bumps)
- Tongue and facial puffiness
- Anaphylactic shock
The last symptom may include unconsciousness and severe constriction of the airway. Many children with allergies suffer from anaphylactic shock in response to peanuts or an insect bite or sting. This kind of response is a medical emergency and requires immediate intervention.
Identification of symptoms plays a big role in allergy diagnosis. Your kid doctor in Maricopa also may perform skin testing which involves introducing a tiny amount of a suspected allergen under the skin and observing the results. Blood tests also help pinpoint allergic responses.
Your pediatrician may suggest eliminating certain foods from your child's diet to see if that impacts symptoms. The American College of Asthma, Allergy, and Immunology also advises a complete medical exam and history to rule out other health problems.
Immunotherapy, or introducing known triggers through allergy "shots" or drops, remains a common and well-respected method of de-sensitizing both children and adults to allergens. Use of oral medications, such as antihistamines, treats symptoms as does avoidance of the environments, foods, or substances which precipitate symptoms.
Severe reactions may require administration of adrenaline as soon as possible. Many parents and older children carry EpiPens to give a fast and often life-saving dose of medication on site before proceeding to Southwestern Pediatrics or the hospital emergency room.
Day to day helps
- Wash face and hands after playing outside. Leave shoes in the hall or mudroom to avoid tracking allergens indoors.
- Keep pets, pet bedding, and cages clean.
- Stay indoors as much as possible on high pollen days. Keep windows closed.
- Avoid foods known to cause symptoms.
- Take medications as prescribed.
- Symptoms change over time. Be alert to a reduction in symptoms and to new ones which may arise.
Learn all you can
Dr. DiGeorge and the staff at Southwestern Pediatrics are happy to help children and parents deal with allergies. If you think your child is developing allergic sensitivities, call the office in Maricopa, AZ, for an appointment. Our providers are very knowledgeable, caring, and accurate in their treatment plans. Contact us today: (520) 568-9500.