ALLERGIES AND CHILDRENChild of London 2009
How a Child Becomes Alergic?
It all starts with the immune system. The immune system of an allergic child treats a harmless substance called an allergen as a dangerous invader. It reacts inappropriately and in an attempt to protect the body it releases chemicals into the bloodstream. This can result in symptoms that can be on the scale from annoying to possibly harmful to the child. The most common allergic conditions in children are food allergies, eczema, asthma and allergic rhinitis (hayfever).
Allergy causing substances can be found both inside and outside the home. Common allergens found outside are pollen and grass. Common allergens found inside are dust, pet dander, smoke and moulds.
The common symptoms of allergy include a runny, blocked or stuffy nose, coughing, wheezing, sneezing frequently or in bursts, watery eyes, rashes and redness in the face. There are some other symptoms that can help you to spot an allergy in your child, such as darkening around the eyes, itchy nose, dry skin, glue ear and facial tics. As a result of these symptoms, children suffering from allergies may be more irritable and less attentive which may have negative impact on their school performance and behaviour.
There are a few different approaches to finding out what you are allergic to:
- Biomedical approach (Prognos) uses allergy profiling of foods and environmental substances. This method does not involve skin pricks nor are there side effects and it is therefore ideal for infants and children.
- Phenolic test – phenolics are chemicals occurring in foods and acting as natural food flavourings, colourings, and preservatives. Many people are intolerant or sensitive to specific phenolics and this test helps to determine groups of foods that need to be avoided or taken in limited amounts.
- Finger-prick blood test evaluates the reaction of your immune system to about 40 commonly used foods and other allergens.
Desensitization - treatment for allergy
Treatment strategy which addresses the underlying cause of the allergic disorder and works on the immune system level is called desensitization. It involves taking drops containing the allergen on a daily basis to induce immune tolerance. The dose is increased by a small amount every week. The drops can safely be administered at home.
Researchers tested the long-term effectiveness and safety of oral Cows Milk desensitization, recalling children already desensitized in 2004 and checking the cow milk toleration status: the results of testing showed that 14 out of 20 children totally or partially tolerated cows milk and none of them reported use of emergency care. These results show that the tolerance induced by oral desensitization persists in time. Results from extensive clinical studies on desensitization have been very encouraging and show that desensitization produces long-term remission of allergic symptoms or reduces their severity as well as reduces the chances of developing sensitivity to new allergens.
Dr. Thomas Marshall-Manifold has over 30 years experience helping people with variety of health problems, including allergies. He developed a unique system of biomedical testing and uses natural therapies including Acupuncture, herbals, Complex Homeopathy and Chiropractic. He also uses Desensitization to manage the body’s allergic response.
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