Asthma and Allergies in Children Can Cause a Miserable Reaction



Asthma is a respiratory condition that is marked by spasms in the bronchi of the lungs, and causes difficulty breathing in children and adults. The condition is brought on by tightened airways that swell up and prevent air from distributing properly. Chronic asthma is the leading cause illness in children today, and can result in severe discomfort and difficulty with breathing. This respiratory condition is found in every one out of 10 children today. The reasons for why children get the respiratory conditiona re not always clear, but the first symptoms can be seen by age five. When a child experiences the combination of asthma and allergy it can cause an overall miserable reaction.

The simple triggers that cause an allergic reaction are pollen, dust mites, and pet hair are just common elements of the reactions that can also set off the asthmatic symptoms such as difficulty breathing, wheezing and chest tightness. Due to these triggers allergies and breathing conditions are linked together. There are also common skin and food allergies, the most common food allergies are shellfish, soy, peanuts, and dairy.

An allergic reaction can happen within moments digesting the wrong food, or breathing in pollen. The immune system receives the wrong message and can recognize a harmless substance as an invader, therefore causing a negative reaction. In most cases, allergies and asthma are designed to be treated with the same medications, such as inhalers, decongestants, and allergy medications

Some fairly well know medications for allergies include Montelukast, also known as Singulair, which is designed to ease the allergies and respiratory condition. Take a child to an allergist to get tested to see what trigger the allergies in the child’s body. Allergy shots may be another option for the child, as this attempts to reduce the response triggered by the immune systems to specific allergies.

A child has a greater of developing asthma if there is a family history of the condition. Frequent respiratory infections are a sign that there is some form asthma in the child’s system. Low birth weight, exposure to tobacco, eczema, are all also developing risk factors of the respiratory condition. The causes and symptoms in children can cause a miserable allergy or asthma reaction in a young child.

There are no factors that prove why more children get the respiratory condition, but smaller children are more exposed to dust, air, pollution and second-hand smoke. The symptoms that tell a parent to take their child to a specialist are constant coughing, wheezing, rapid breathing, tightness of the chest, feelings of weakness, dark circles under the eyes, frequent headaches and loss of appetite. Parents need to learn to recognize the important signs in a young child.

Asthma can usually be difficult to diagnose in infants, but in older children asthma can be recognized based on thorough physical exam, symptoms, and medical history. Tests can also be done to confirm the condition, such as skin tests for allergies and chest X-ray and pulmonary function tests can also be performed. In order to avoid asthma flare-ups, it is best to make the home, work, and school environments as free of allergic triggers as possible and to always monitor symptoms and have medications on hand for assistance.

Making the environment safer can help reduce the miserable reactions that are flared up by allergies and asthma. Protecting each individual from getting ill, by washing hands often with soap and water, avoid crowded environments during cold and flu seasons and getting influenza shots annually may help reduce the flare up negative reactions in the immune system.

By Elina Brik

Mayo Clinic
American Lung Association
Photo by NIAID – Creativecommons Flickr License

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