FFE Magazine

Stuffy nose, coughing and sneezing? It might be Allergy

by FFE Health News Staff

 

Stuffy nose, coughing and sneezing? It might be Allergy

How allergies are different from colds and how to treat them among children.

 

The symptoms of colds and allergy are almost the same: runny and stuffy nose, coughing, sneezing and tiredness. But there are some other indications parents must look out for that can say if their child is having colds or allergies:

 

Additional symptoms of colds:

  • Aches and pains
  • Sore throat

 

Additional symptoms of allergies

  • Itchy eyes
  • Rashes

 

When the symptoms point to allergies, it’s time to take the necessary precautions to lower the child’s exposure to the allergen (the things that trigger the allergy) and treat the allergy.

 

Types of allergens

Substances that can trigger allergic reactions are often airborne, making them difficult to control. But parents can help lower the risk of exposure by keeping their children away from the sources of the allergens.

 

Pollen

Pollen from plants is abundant during spring and certain times of the day. Pollen increases during midday, grass pollen meanwhile spreads during the late afternoon. Parents should keep their children indoors during these peak times.

 

Pet hair

If getting rid of a pet is difficult, cleaning rooms periodically and bathing the pet regularly will keep dander and hair to a minimum. Air filters or purifiers can also keep the air free of substances.

 

Mold

Mold spores can travel through air and cause an allergic reaction. To reduce the number of molds in the home, check for leaks or places around the house that collect water. De-humidifiers and exhaust fans can also keep moisture levels low.

 

Dust Mites

These very small insects can thrive in pillows and beddings. Washing linen thoroughly will keep them out of the fabric. Zippered covers can also keep the mites at bay.

 

Over-the-counter medications

After applying prevention measures, get over-the-counter (OTC) medications to manage the symptoms. Some of these are oral anti-histamines that block the allergic reaction and decongestants that clear runny nose. To prevent side effects, it is important to seek doctor’s advice first.

 

Serious cases

If prevention and OTC medications do not work, then it’s time to bring the child to an immunologist. To diagnose an allergy, the child may undergo a series of tests. Once the allergen has been identified, the specialist maps out a prevention and treatment programme catered specifically to the child’s situation. Allergy shots may also be administered to help the child become more immune to the allergic reaction.

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