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Up to 40 percent of US children suffer from seasonal allergies related to pollen and mold. The symptoms may, at first, lead you to believe your child just caught a cold. Allergy symptoms, however, persist for much longer periods of time and can have far-reaching consequences. How do you tell if your child might be suffering from hay fever, what should you do if you suspect seasonal allergies, and what are the treatment options?
How Can You Tell If Your Child Has A Seasonal Allergy?
So, your kid has a runny and blocked-up nose and keeps sneezing — are you looking at a cold, or at a seasonal allergy? Colds, for one, tend to be over and done with within a fortnight, and because they're contagious, your kid's school mates, siblings, and you are also likely to have the same symptoms. If you are dealing with seasonal allergic rhinitis, also called hay fever, though, the symptoms will persist far longer. A child magically getting "a cold" at the same time each year is one powerful clue that they have seasonal allergic rhinitis, and you can add red and itchy eyes and coughing to the list. In addition, the secretions that come out of your child's nose will be clear, rather than green or yellow, if they are having an allergic reaction. If allergies run in your family, that is another clue that tells you your child may be following your "tradition". Kids who suffer from allergies are also more prone to developing eczema than the general population.
Though seasonal allergies are quite easy to pinpoint and many adults who suffer from them and seek over the counter treatment have never received a formal diagnosis, it is nonetheless a good idea to check in with your child's pediatrician. Skin and blood tests can, together with present symptoms, confirm that your child is suffering from a seasonal allergy. Skin tests, in particular, can identify allergens with great accuracy, leading to the ability to tailor treatment to the patient's individual needs.
Seasonal Allergies: Far-Reaching Consequences
Not only is walking around with the symptoms seasonal allergies cause simply unpleasant, hay fever can have a large impact on a sufferer's day to day life. In a bid to avoid triggering the symptoms, allergy sufferers may try to stay indoors as much as possible during allergy season. Their sleep may be affected by their stuffed nose and itchy eyes, and concentration at school or work may suffer greatly. Research even confirms that hay fever plays a huge role in standardized test results. Allergies are more than irritating, then — and seeking relief should be a priority.