Allergies occur when a person’s immune system reacts to substances in the environment that are harmless for most people but to the person with the allergy is can cause many different signs and symptoms
Helping Children with allergies:
- try and establish what the allergen is, is it caused by food, something in the environment or coming into contact with animals
- avoid contact with the allergen, where possible check food labels, avoid animals and avoid areas with the environmental allergen in
- be aware of signs and symptoms – think hay fever: itchy eyes, runny nose, rash and sometimes difficulty in breathing
- carry antihistamine (medication used to treat allergies) with you
- have a plan of care of what to do in an emergency
Asthma attacks all age groups but often starts in childhood. It is a disease characterized by recurrent attacks of breathlessness and wheezing, which vary in severity and frequency from person to person.
Helping children with asthma:
- be aware of signs and symptoms – shortness of breath, complaining of tummy or chest pain, being unable to speak in a full sentence, being lethargic and using many muscles to breath
- be aware of triggers for the asthma : change in weather, coughs and colds, animals and pollen and try and manage these triggers when possible
- take the preventer medication (brown, orange and purple inhaler or granules/tablet) as prescribed
- carry the reliever (blue or green inhaler) with you at all times with the spacer if one is needed.
- have a plan of care with what to do in an emergency
Atopic eczema (atopic dermatitis) is the most common form of eczema, a condition that causes the skin to become itchy, red, dry and cracked. Atopic eczema is more common in children.
Helping children with eczema:
- emollients – restore moisture into the skin and need to be applied between 6-8 times a day
- steroid – Applied 1-2 a day with a fingertip amount over the size of the palm of the hand for 7-14 days.
- infections – children with eczema are more prone to skin infections and may need antibiotic creams to manage this
- bathing – will help to clean the skin and prevent infection
- holidays – Eczema can improve on holiday. Some children will find the sun creams can irritate the skin. Try an own brand less expensive cream.