Back to School with Allergies & Asthma
Back to School with Allergies & Asthma
You are busy purchasing new supplies, a backpack, and clothes for your child to use when they head back to school.
You may schedule your child an annual checkup and one last summer hurrah before returning them to a stricter bedtime and routine.
You do everything you know to do to set your child up for school success. Still, when they head back to school, many children will experience a flare-up of itchy, watering eyes and congestion, making their first weeks back less successful.
Whether your child is allergic to pollen, dust mites, molds, classroom pets, or foods — or some combination of those — school environments are often rife with allergens. Hopefully, the symptoms are only a mild nuisance, but for some, allergy symptoms during the school day can impact sleep, school performance, and even their social life.
Doctors often see a peak in hospitalizations in late September due to asthma attacks, especially in children. In addition to the increased allergens, as kids return to school, they can be exposed to more viruses that can trigger an asthma exacerbation. Therefore, it is important to ensure those with asthma continue to take their medication as prescribed. Now is a great time to help them get back on track for the school year.
Here are the signs and symptoms of some of the most common allergies and what to do about them:
Itchy, Watering Eyes, Stuffy Nose and Sneezing
Pollens, dust mites and molds are often present in classrooms. These can cause allergic rhinitis (“hay fever”), which can exacerbate asthma. Immunotherapy treatments are a very effective way to stop the symptoms of these types of allergies and asthma. That said, to really be most effective you should start immunotherapy treatment about three months before your most symptomatic time of year.
Drowsiness and Fatigue
No one concentrates well on little sleep. Restless nights can cause unfocused, unmotivated, hazy days in the classroom, on the field, and at the dinner table. If allergies keep your child from getting a good night’s sleep, treating those symptoms could make all the difference in your child’s daytime classroom performance. And, if you’re already treating your child’s allergies, make sure that you’re not using an over-the-counter allergy medication that causes drowsiness.
Itching and Hives
If you’ve ever had a bad bout of itchy hives, you know how distracting and embarrassing they can be. Skin rashes are a common symptom of seasonal and food allergies, especially nuts, dairy, egg and fish, and over-the-counter medications often only mask the symptoms. Allergy skin testing performed by an allergy specialist may be necessary to determine the source of the problem and create a personalized solution.
Issues With Lunch
If your child has a known food allergy, you may have already thought to speak to school administrators about it. If not, be sure you ask for a tour of the school and get some information on how lunches and snacks are prepared. If you think your child has a serious food allergy, you likely will need specific allergy skin testing and perhaps an oral food challenge provided by an allergy specialist.
Allergy & Asthma Specialists can help you identify the source of your child’s problems and provide proper treatment. For more information, visit them online. To schedule an appointment call, 1-800-86-COUGH, or book online by clicking here.
Feel better. Sleep better. Look better. See an allergist.
One visit with the allergist will identify your allergic triggers and develop a treatment plan.
All the physicians of Allergy & Asthma Specialists are board-certified in allergy and clinical immunology. You can easily schedule an appointment at one of eight convenient locations, and we can usually determine the source of your allergies in a single visit using skin testing without the use of needles. To learn more, contact us today at 1-800-86-COUGH, or click here to visit our website with information on the location closest to you.
Schedule an appointment at any of the 8 convenient locations online or call 610-825-5800, extension 2.