What’s going on with your kids?
Maybe you’ve noticed a raised red spot on your son’s skin after he’s been playing in the park.
Maybe you hear your daughter sneezing after she pets your neighbor’s cat.
Or you might notice your preteen rubbing his puffy eyes as he wheels the lawn mower back into the garage.
What do these symptoms have in common and how can you help?
What is an allergy?
The children described above may be showing signs of an allergic reaction. Common allergy triggers include:
Any child can develop an allergy. It happens when their immune system overreacts to a substance that’s normally harmless.
When your child eats, touches, or breathes in an allergen, their immune system releases histamines. That causes symptoms of an allergic reaction.
The symptoms of an allergic reaction can vary from person to person. Allergens can affect your child’s skin, respiratory tract, and other organs.
How can allergies affect your child’s skin?
If your child comes in contact with an allergen, they may develop contact dermatitis. Their skin may appear:
If they touch, inhale, or eat an allergen, they can also develop hives. These are raised welts that can develop on their skin, and they’re almost always itchy.
Some children with allergies also develop eczema. This condition causes their skin to become inflamed, itchy, and irritated, even when they haven’t made contact with an allergen.
What do respiratory symptoms involve?
Allergic reactions can also affect your child’s respiratory tract and sinuses. After coming into contact with an allergen, they may experience:
stuffy or runny nose
red, itchy, or watery eyes
a feeling of pressure in their face
coughing, wheezing, shortness of breath
If your child has a severe allergy, they may develop anaphylaxis. This is a potentially life-threatening allergic reaction.
It can cause their airways to close, making it difficult to breathe.
What other symptoms do allergies cause?
Your child might experience other, more severe symptoms too, including:
a tingling sensation in their mouth
swelling of their tongue or face
In the case of a severe allergic reaction, they can even lose consciousness.
If you suspect your child has an allergy, make an appointment with their doctor.
If you suspect they’re having a severe allergic reaction, give them epinephrine if you have it, and call 911.
How can you prevent allergic reactions?
The most effective way to prevent allergic reactions is to avoid allergens. Once you know what allergens your child is allergic to, ask their doctor how they can avoid them.
For example, if your child is allergic to grass, their doctor may encourage them to wear long pants and socks outside.
If they’re allergic to dogs, their doctor may advise them to avoid petting them.
If they’re allergic to certain foods, their doctor will emphasize the importance of never eating them. For example, they will likely encourage you and your child to read ingredient lists, ask questions about restaurant menu items, and take steps to avoid contaminating dishes and cooking surfaces with allergens.
Can you use natural remedies?
Many allergic reactions can be avoided. But accidents do happen.
To treat allergic reactions, your child’s doctor will likely recommend certain medications. For example, they may recommend over-the-counter antihistamines, prescription antihistamines, or epinephrine.
Some natural remedies may also help soothe mild allergic symptoms. But you should never use natural remedies to treat a severe allergic reaction.
Always talk to your child’s doctor before trying a new treatment for their allergies.
Natural remedies for skin symptoms
Antihistamine creams and lotions are available at many drug stores. Some other remedies may also help soothe skin symptoms.
For example, to help treat contact dermatitis, bathe the irritated area with warm water and mild soap. Then consider applying aloe vera gel or calendula cream.
Note, however, that some people can also be sensitive to the ingredients in these products. If your child’s skin is dry, a fragrance-free moisturizing cream or ointment may help.
To help relieve hives, apply a cool wet cloth to the area. Putting baking soda or oatmeal in your child’s bathwater might also provide a soothing effect.
Natural remedies for sinus symptoms
Even if you install filters on your air conditioner, get rid of allergy-triggering pets, and keep kids inside when pollen counts are high, it may be hard for them to avoid airborne allergens completely.
To treat mild respiratory symptoms, consider trying over-the-counter allergy medications.
Breathing in steam from a bowl of hot water may also help clear congested sinuses.
And some people believe that nasal lavage can help. In this procedure, you use a neti pot or other device to flush your child’s nasal cavities out with water. Do this only with older children who will cooperate with the procedure.
Natural remedies for stomach symptoms
If your child has diarrhea, encourage them to eat a bland diet. For example, many people recommend rice, toast, bananas, and applesauce. It’s also important for them to drink plenty of water and other fluids.
If your child feels nauseous, encourage them to rest and stay still. Get rid of strong scents that might make their upset stomach worse, such as candles or air fresheners.
You can also look for special antinausea wristbands at your local drug store. They’re designed to stimulate a pressure point that might help relieve nausea. Though there is no strong evidence these work, they are low-risk.
Rashes happen from time to time, especially in dry weather. But rashes that don’t go away could be skin allergies.
Skin allergies are the most common allergies in children. The second most common are allergies to foods. Respiratory allergies, which are more common among older children, are the third most common.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the cases of skin and food allergies among children increased over the period of a long-term survey (1997–2011), with skin allergies more prevalent in younger children than older ones.
Allergies are one of the most common medical conditions, but having them at an early age can interfere with a child’s physical and emotional health.
Learn about the different types of skin allergies in children and how to find the most effective treatment.
The most advanced and effective communication device in this century is mobile phone. Mobile phone is not only being used by the corporate or highly qualified professional. People from all type of social group have mobile phone in their hands now. Usage of the mobile phone is not increased only with all social groups but also with people of all age groups. Children are the more noticeable group as they are using cell phones of all types.
A recent research study shows that children are really capable of using any advanced type of mobile phones even without any proper guidance. Though mobile phones are the effective mode of communication, it is a well known fact that it also has adverse side effects if being over used. The mobile phones emit shockwave radioactive radiations that affect the body in various manners.
Adverse effects of mobile phone usage:
Today's children are growing up in a radio-frequency environment that never existed in human history before. The radiation emitted by mobile phones and mobile phone masts can have adverse effects on children. Some include:
Affects your Immunity Status: cell phones after a full day usage contains many germs on their display which are highly numbered than your toilet seats. These germs are easily transferred to your body as you touch frequently or use close to your face for talking. This increases the risk of exposure to the germs and reduces your immune strength as immune status are not fully developed for children.
Increase Risk of Chronic Pains: prolonged use of mobile phones for playing games or texting requires continuous movement for your hands which may develop chronic pain in joints of your hands and shoulders.
Vision Problem: children when concentrate much on playing games in mobile phone they even fail to blink frequently with the increased interest and attraction towards the game. This causes the dryness of the conjunctiva and also increases the ocular tension.
Affects your emotions negatively and increases the stress level
Mobile Phone Safety For Kids:
As a parent, you must take preventive measures to minimize your child's exposure to the harmful effects of mobile phones. These include:
Do not give cell phone if your child is under 16 years. A child's brain is too sensitive to withstand the effects of mobile radiation.
Do not let your child hold a mobile phone directly up to his head. Use an air-tube headset instead.
Do not let your child make calls in buses, trains, cars, and elevators. The mobile phone works harder to get the signal out through the metal, which increases the power level.
Do not let your child use cell phone when the signal is weak. It will increase the power to the maximum, as the phone attempts to connect to a new relay antenna.
Limit the use of cell phone around children.
Make sure that there is no mobile phone mast or network tower near your home or your kid's school.
Do not let children take mobile phones to school.
Do not leave mobile phones in your children's bedroom at night.
Besides healthy eating and exercise, getting enough sleep may also be a key factor in managing weight in children and adolescents, a new study has found.The findings showed that children and adolescents who get less than the recommended amount of sleep for their age are at a higher risk of gaining more weight.
Overall, they were 58 per cent more likely to become overweight or obese -- a common risk factor for various cardio-metabolic diseases.
"Being overweight can lead to cardiovascular disease and Type-2-diabetes which is also on the increase in children. The findings of the study indicate that sleep may be an important potentially modifiable risk factor (or marker) of future obesity," said Michelle Miller, from the University of Warwick in Coventry, UK.
For the study, published in the journal Sleep, the team reviewed the results of 42 population studies of infants, children and adolescents aged zero to 18 years which included a total of 75,499 participants.
"The results showed a consistent relationship across all ages indicating that the increased risk is present in both younger and older children," Miller said.
The prevalence of obesity has increased world-wide and the World Health Organisation has now declared it a global epidemic.
According to the recent recommendations by US-based National Sleep Foundation infants (four to 11 months) must get between 12-15 hours of nightly sleep, toddlers (one-two years) must sleep for 11-14 hours.
Children in pre-school (three-five years) should sleep for 10-13 hours, while school aged children (six-13 years) must get between nine and 11 hours of sleep. Teenagers (14-17 years) are advised to get eight-10 hours.
Besides smoking and drinking alcohol, parents' health including obesity and poor diet can have "profound implications" for the growth, development and long-term health of their children before their conception, says a series of studies published in the journal Lancet.
The findings showed that smoking, high alcohol and caffeine intake, diet, obesity and malnutrition in either or both parents, potentially increases a child's lifelong risk of heart attacks, stroke, diabetes, immune and neurological diseases.
The research emphasises the need for greater awareness of preconception health and improved guidance, with greater focus on diet and nutrition to improve the health of future generations.
"Research is now showing that our gametes and early embryos are sensitive to a variety of environmental conditions including poor parental diet. These effects can change the process of development, affecting growth, metabolism and health of offspring, so makes the case for both parents to have a healthy lifestyle well before conception and pregnancy." said Tom Fleming, professor at the University of Southampton.
Maternal obesity is thought to enhance levels of inflammation and hormones, which can directly alter the development of the egg and embryo. This, in turn, boosts the odds of chronic disease later in life.
In men, being obese leads to poor sperm quality, quantity and motility associated with many of the same conditions.
"The preconception period is a critical time when parental health -- including weight, metabolism and diet -- can influence the risk of future chronic disease in children, and we must now re-examine public health policy to help reduce this risk," said Judith Stephenson, professor from the University College of London.
"While the current focus on risk factors such as smoking and excess alcohol intake is important, we also need new drives to prepare nutritionally for pregnancy in both parents," Stephenson added.
The results were based in part on two new analyses of women of reproductive age - 18 to 42 - in the UK and Australia.
The team also found that women are often not "nutritionally prepared" for pregnancy. Some 96 per cent of the women, for example, had iron and folate intakes below the recommended levels, 14.8 milligrams and 400 micrograms per day, respectively.
Adjusting diet after a pregnancy has begun is often not good enough to fundamentally improve child health, the researchers said.
They propose that behaviour change interventions, supplementation and fortification starting in adolescence, by schools could help young adults prepare for healthy parenthood in the future.