Allergies cause all kinds of discomforts, not just seasonally, but year-round as well. Fortunately, if your child is dealing with allergies that give them a runny nose, sneezing, or watery eyes, the pediatricians here at Clearwater Pediatric Care and Westchase Pediatric Care can help—read on to learn how!
What are allergies?
Allergies are the body's hypersensitive reaction to ordinary environmental substances or foods. Present in both children and adults, the Centers for Disease Control says that 50 million people in the United States have allergies.
When it comes to living with allergies, proper diagnosis/identification of the allergen and treatment are key to good daily function. Parents and the doctors here at our Westchase offices work together to formulate allergy care plans that are helpful to children.
Dealing with allergies
Most allergy sufferers undergo diagnostic tests to determine what substance provokes their symptoms. Typically, doctors order skin prick or scratch tests that introduce tiny amounts of suspected allergens under the skin. Any reactions are read and a treatment plan is formulated. Sometimes doctors order blood work, as well.
Once identified, allergies can be controlled through:
- Avoiding triggers, such as pet dander, foods, tobacco smoke and pollen
- Using nasal sprays, eye drops, and oral medications to suppress symptoms
- Taking allergy shots (immunotherapy) to de-sensitize the body's reaction to triggers
Additionally, there are common-sense steps parents can take to suppress their children's symptoms. These can include:
- Limiting time outdoors during peak allergy season
- Closing the windows
- Having the child wash face and hands and even change clothes after playing outdoors
- Paying attention to what interventions and medicines work and which do not (and be sure to tell your child's doctor)
- Routinely dusting hard surfaces in your home and vacuuming soft surfaces
- Avoiding all tobacco smoke
Find out more
The more knowledgeable you are about your youngster's allergies the more control you will have over symptoms. For ongoing help, stay in contact with your child's doctor. Our team of five pediatricians and their support staff are very willing to answer questions, give suggestions, and help you coordinate your child's care. For Clearwater Pediatric Care, our number is (717) 461-1543. For Westchase Pediatric Care, phone (813) 818-1543.