In children, allergies are often diagnosed by a blood test. If the allergy tests positive for a specific allergen, the patient will be examined further to find out exactly what he or she is allergic to. Allergies can cause a range of symptoms including skin rashes, hives, asthma, and ear infections.
Babies can sometimes be allergic to food. Their small airways may not be able to get rid of the irritants in food quickly enough. For infants, food allergies can sometimes develop before their first birthday. In some cases, food allergies can be passed on to the parents as well.
In older children and adults, such allergy problems usually result from exposure to certain chemicals. One example is shellfish. While this is not an allergy most of the time, it does cause irritation to many people when they eat shellfish.
Another possible problem is mold. This fungus feeds off of moisture and can build up on clothing, furniture, and even in homes. It can also be found on walls. If there is too much moisture around, mold can grow rapidly.
Children can have allergies caused by chemicals that occur naturally. In some cases, the body will react to the chemicals in the food that a child is eating. Allergic reactions can make the child sick, particularly if the chemicals are used as preservatives in foods.
Children who have allergies can usually recognize their allergy problems. They may have hives, wheezing, coughing, runny noses, or swelling around the eyes. The mouth and throat may be sore, as well.
Allergy testing can determine the exact type of allergy a child has. A doctor can identify which allergens he or she is allergic to and then prescribe medication to treat them. Allergies can range from reactions to food to reactions to common household chemicals.
Some allergies are more serious than others, and some may require certain medications. When a child has to take any medication, he or she should be checked regularly for side effects. If an allergy is causing a reaction, the medication may not be appropriate. Other problems can occur if the child takes too much medication or stops taking it abruptly.
Symptoms may vary from one person to another. If you notice signs of an allergy, make sure to get it checked out. A child with any one of the above symptoms should be seen by a doctor immediately. He or she will help to decide whether your child has a food allergy or something else.
If you know that your child is allergic to a particular substance, tell the doctor. Food allergies are more common in adults, but allergic reactions can also happen in children. Only the doctor can diagnose your child’s allergies, so you should be sure to have him or her involved in the process.
Allergy testing can help you figure out whether your child has a food allergy or a mold allergy. A doctor will want to know the specific ingredients of the food your child is allergic to. If there is no specific allergen, the doctor may recommend a food allergy test, which can determine if your child is allergic to food.