Pediatric seasonal allergies are a common concern for parents, affecting millions of children each year. With spring and summer just around the corner, it’s important to know what to look out for and what treatment options are available to help manage symptoms.
Seasonal allergies are caused by an overreaction of the immune system to allergens such as pollen, mold, and grass. When a child comes into contact with these allergens, the immune system produces histamines, which can cause a range of symptoms including:
- Runny nose
- Itchy, watery eyes
- Itchy throat and nose
These symptoms can be disruptive to daily life and, in severe cases, can even impact a child’s ability to attend a school or participate in activities.
If you suspect that your child may have seasonal allergies, it’s important to consult with their pediatrician or an allergist for proper diagnosis and treatment. A doctor will perform a physical exam and may also recommend allergy testing to determine what specific allergens are triggering your child’s symptoms.
Treatment for Seasonal Allergies in Children
Once your child’s allergies have been diagnosed, there are a variety of treatment options available to help manage symptoms. Some of the most common treatments include:
- Antihistamines: These medications help to block the histamines that are released during an allergic reaction, reducing symptoms such as sneezing, itching, and runny nose.
- Decongestants: These medications help to relieve congestion by shrinking the blood vessels in the nasal passages.
- Nasal corticosteroids: These medications are used to reduce inflammation in the nasal passages, helping to relieve congestion and other symptoms.
- Allergy shots: Allergy shots, also known as immunotherapy, can be used to help desensitize a child’s immune system to specific allergens over time, reducing the severity of their symptoms.
In addition to medical treatment, there are also a number of steps parents can take at home to help manage their child’s seasonal allergies. These include:
- Keeping windows and doors closed during peak pollen times to reduce exposure to allergens.
- Using air conditioning and air purifiers to help filter allergens out of the air.
- Encouraging frequent hand washing to reduce the spread of allergens.
- Vacuuming and dusting regularly to remove allergens from the home.
- Limiting time spent outdoors during high pollen count days.
By taking these steps and working with your child’s doctor to develop an appropriate treatment plan, it’s possible to manage pediatric seasonal allergies and help your child feel more comfortable and healthy during the spring and summer months.
Take the first step towards improving your child’s health with pediatric integrative medicine. Call The Village Doctor at (650) 851-4747 or Contact us to learn more about the practice.
Sky Pittson, MD, April 3, 2023