Signs and Causes of Children’s Allergies | Claritin®

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Everything You Need to Know About Children’s Allergies

For up to 40% of children, allergies are an unfortunate fact of life. Neighborhoods are full of children playing outside during peak allergyX allergy
An exaggerated response of the immune system to a substance that is ordinarily harmless.
season, seemingly without a care in the world. Learning about allergyX allergy
An exaggerated response of the immune system to a substance that is ordinarily harmless.
symptoms in kids will help you avoid allergens and find the right treatment options so your child can live life to the fullest and you’ll breathe a little easier too.

What Are Allergies in Kids?

An allergyX allergy
An exaggerated response of the immune system to a substance that is ordinarily harmless.
is an overreaction of the body’s immune systemX immune system
The body’s defense system that protects us against infections and foreign substances.
. When children inhale allergens such as pet dander, pollenX pollen
A fine, powdery substance, typically yellow, consisting of microscopic grains discharged from the male part of a flower called stamens or from the male cone of a tree.
, dust mitesX dust mites
A common trigger for indoor allergies. They are microscopic mites that live in the fibers of pillows, mattresses, blankets and carpet. They live off of our dead skin cells. Inhalation of their droppings can cause allergic reactions such as runny nose, sneezing and nasal congestion.
and moldX mold
Parasitic, microscopic fungi (like Alternaria) that float in the air like pollen. Mold spores are a common trigger for allergies and can be found in damp areas, such as the basement or bathroom, as well as outdoors in grass, leaf piles, hay, mulch or under mushrooms.
, their bodies may mistake them for harmful substances. In response, the body releases chemicals like histamineX histamine
A naturally occurring substance that is released by the immune system after being exposed to an allergen. When you inhale an allergen, mast cells located in the nose and sinus membranes release histamine. Histamine then attaches to receptors on nearby blood vessels, causing them to enlarge (dilate)…
to fight the foreign material. This immune response causes allergyX allergy
An exaggerated response of the immune system to a substance that is ordinarily harmless.
symptoms.

Allergies can affect anyone of any age, but they are more prominent among kids than adults and often become less severe with age. Allergies may be the reason your child is not acting like they usually do. Frankly, they can be no fun. Allergies are not contagious, although it can be hard to tell the difference between allergies and the common cold.

Signs of Allergies in Kids

If several of the following symptoms continue for a long period or are tied to the seasons, chances are your child is suffering from allergies rather than a common coldX common cold
The common cold is a viral infection of your upper respiratory tract—your nose and throat.
or the flu.

Number one icon

Runny Nose
With allergies, nasal discharge is usually thin, clear and watery.

Number two icon

Sneezing
Sneezing from allergies often occurs in fits.

Number three icon

Coughing and Throat Clearing
Allergies can cause swelling or irritation of the airways.

Number four icon

Nasal Congestion
Swollen nasal passages cause a stuffy nose and “nasally” speech.

Number two icon

AllergyX Allergy
An exaggerated response of the immune system to a substance that is ordinarily harmless.
Eye

Eyes can become itchy, irritated, red or watery.

Number six icon

Allergic ShinersX Allergic Shiners
Dark, swollen bags under the eyes, possibly caused by nasal congestion.

Dark, puffy circles under the eyes are caused by swollen nasal cavities.

Number seven icon

Allergic SaluteX Allergic Salute
Frequent upward rubbing of the nose that can last more than 2 weeks. This rubbing can lead to an "allergic crease" or line at the bridge of the nose.

Children often wipe their runny nose with the palm of their hand in an upward motion.

Number eighticon

Mouth Breathing
Nasal congestion can cause children to breathe through their mouths.

How to Tell if Your Child Has Allergies

Determining what children are allergic to is the first step toward managing their allergy symptoms. Remember; you are not alone. Millions of children suffer from seasonal allergiesX seasonal allergies
A chronic disease characterized by an overreaction of the immune system to certain allergens commonly found outside, such as tree, grass, or weed pollens,or mold spores. Also called hay fever, outdoor allergies.
each year. Pediatricians and allergists are experts and are there to help. Ask yourself the following questions:

Do you have a family history?
Children are much more likely to develop allergies if one or both of their parents are sufferers. While your child might not inherit your particular allergyX allergy
An exaggerated response of the immune system to a substance that is ordinarily harmless.
, family history can help you pinpoint whether your child’s symptoms are allergies or something else.

Do symptoms go away after a week or two?
If your child shows allergyX allergy
An exaggerated response of the immune system to a substance that is ordinarily harmless.
symptoms, but they disappear completely after a week or two, chances are they were suffering from a cold. Allergies tend to stick around for entire seasons, although they can be more or less severe based on pollenX pollen
A fine, powdery substance, typically yellow, consisting of microscopic grains discharged from the male part of a flower called stamens or from the male cone of a tree.
count, weather and other factors.

Where do allergies occur?
If respiratory symptoms are worse outdoors than indoors, chances are your child is allergic to pollenX pollen
A fine, powdery substance, typically yellow, consisting of microscopic grains discharged from the male part of a flower called stamens or from the male cone of a tree.
from weeds, grass or trees. If symptoms are worse indoors, the likely culprit is dust mitesX dust mites
A common trigger for indoor allergies. They are microscopic mites that live in the fibers of pillows, mattresses, blankets and carpet. They live off of our dead skin cells. Inhalation of their droppings can cause allergic reactions such as runny nose, sneezing and nasal congestion.
or pet dander. MoldX Mold
Parasitic, microscopic fungi (like Alternaria) that float in the air like pollen. Mold spores are a common trigger for allergies and can be found in damp areas, such as the basement or bathroom, as well as outdoors in grass, leaf piles, hay, mulch or under mushrooms.
allergies can be triggered indoors or out.

When do allergies occur?
If your child only has allergic reactions in spring, chances are they are suffering from outdoor allergies. Indoor allergiesX Indoor allergies
Characterized by an overreaction of the immune system to certain allergens (see Allergens) commonly found indoors, such as mold spores, pet dander, cockroaches or dust mites (also called perennial allergies). Indoor allergies tend to last longer than allergies caused by exposure to outdoor…
can occur all year round but are more noticeable in colder months when children spend more time inside.

What does my pediatrician say?
Tests from a qualified allergistX allergist
An allergist/immunologist (commonly referred to as an allergist) is a physician specially trained to diagnose, treat and manage allergies, asthma, and immunologic disorders, including primary immunodeficiency disorders. These conditions range from the very common to the very rare, spanning all ages…
will help determine the exact cause of your child’s allergies. Once it’s clear what triggers their symptoms, you can take active steps to help your child avoid those substances and develop an effective treatment plan. Allergies are very manageable. Hopefully, your child will be back to normal in no time, enjoying the outdoors and playing to the fullest.

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