How to Prepare: Your Child’s First Doctor Visit for Allergies
Your child is not acting as usual. They typically are energetic and playful, but now their nose is runny and throat is itchy. You might choose to see a doctor.
When allergies affect your child, you will likely have lots of questions to ask your child’s allergist or pediatrician — and they’ll have plenty of questions to ask you, too. It can seem like a lot, but don’t let yourself be overwhelmed. Claritin® has gathered the following resources to help you prepare for your first visit.
Track Allergy Symptoms
If you have time between now and your appointment, track your child’s allergy symptoms. Many symptoms are similar to those of the common cold , but there are some key differences between colds and allergies that can help you to determine whether your child is dealing with allergies. Paying close attention to your child’s symptoms now will prepare you if your pediatrician or allergist asks about:
- Types of symptoms (sneezing, runny nose, etc.)
- The way symptoms impact your child every day
- Changes in symptoms
- When symptoms appear
- Symptom severity
DOWNLOAD THE FREE CLARITIN® SYMPTOM TRACKER
Your doctor will have a lot of questions during your child’s visit. Prepare ahead of time by downloading this simple symptom tracker. It allows you to easily keep track of pollen counts, allergy symptoms and what time of day symptoms occur.
Beyond day-to-day symptoms, your doctor may ask other questions to help determine what types of allergies may be affecting your child and what the most effective treatment is. Here are some potential questions you should think about ahead of time.
- When did you first notice your child’s allergy symptoms? How old was he or she?
- Does anyone else in your family have allergies? Mom? Dad? Siblings?
- What treatment methods, if any, have you tried before?
- Is your child on any medications for allergies or other conditions?
- Where do symptoms occur? Could your child be suffering from indoor allergies, outdoor/seasonal allergies, or both?
You should also let your child know what to expect at the doctor’s appointment. The doctor may perform an allergy test that requires pricking the skin, or a breathing test that requires blowing into a tube. If your child is anxious about the appointment, reassure them that the skin test won’t hurt and practice breathing with a pinwheel or noisemaker. The doctor’s visit is about getting them allergy relief so they can focus on having fun and living an active life, not their allergies.
Ask the Right Questions When You’re There
These are the types of questions that often come up when you talk to your child’s doctor about seasonal and indoor allergies . Remember, this isn’t a quiz. The doctor or allergist is an expert and wants to develop the best treatment plan to get your child back on track.
- How do you know if my child has allergies?
- Are there specific allergens that seem to worsen my child’s allergy symptoms?
- Once symptoms do go away, should I expect allergy symptoms to reappear in my child?
- Will my child show symptoms all year?
- In the future, how do I know if symptoms are allergies, or if it’s something else, like a cold?
- Will my child’s allergies ever get better or go away?
- Can I do anything around the house to help manage my child’s allergies?
- Should my child see an allergy specialist?
- Do you have any samples of Children’s Claritin® I could try?