Trip to the Hospital

I thought I would tell you all what has been happening with me, and my gorgeous daughter because I found it oddly related. Besides one food intolerance my daughter has had no allergies so far (thankfully!). About 2 or 3 weeks ago my daughter got the flu, it was no surprise as she started daycare 2 days a week and in my mind daycare is basically a glorified cesspool of sickness that you pay large amounts for your child to play in. The flu went away but came back about a week later, again, no surprise on my end. After about 4 days of the new flu, I put my daughter to bed at 8:30pm as usual. An hour later she woke up crying, I went into her room to help her get back to sleep and was completely shocked to find my beautiful daughter looking, well, like a glorified children of the corn character. Continue reading

Food Allergies In Babies

Becoming a mother was the scariest thing I have ever done. Pregnancy was scary, birth was even scarier, and everything that followed was beautiful but also scary! After I spent the first few months of parenthood scared of every little thing (including nights spent getting up every 20 minutes to make sure my baby was breathing when she started sleeping through the night), I eventually started to relax and actually got into a good routine… And then, the 6-month mark arrived I was recommended to have my baby start solids. I had a really hard time with this, I was so scared my baby would have an allergic reaction. Is it obvious I have anxiety yet?

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Dog Allergies

Allergies in dogs are more common than some would think. Allergies can affect any dog and it can happen at any point in their life. Some dog breeds are more common to have allergies. Some of these breeds are Retrievers, Terriers, Setters, Pugs, and Bulldogs.

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Hay Fever

Lots of people know about the joys of hay fever… and by joys I really mean the struggle! Hay fever causes congestion, runny nose, itchy eyes, pressure on the sinuses and sneezing. Although the symptoms sound the same as a cold or flu, it’s not a virus, instead, it’s another allergy.

What your body is reacting to is tree pollen, usually. Although sometimes even grass and weeds can cause a reaction in those who are sensitive to this. Mould spores are another common culprit to those who live with hay fever. Hay fever is quite common. This allergy will typically affect 1 in 5 people at some point in their lives. During April and May tree pollen reaches the highest count, that makes these typically the worst time for hay fever if you are sensitive to tree pollen. June and July are the peak times for those who get hay fever from grass. Ragweed hits it’s peak from August to October, so those who suffer from hay fever caused by weeds will usually find this time period to be the worst for their symptoms.

There are quite a few natural ways you can change or add to your diet to try and control hay fever symptoms. Some people find increasing their natural, local honey intake helps. This is something that is done daily with this method. It is said to work because the bee pollen can help your body regulate and help you become less sensitive to pollens. Another option is taking advantage of the natural antihistamines that are present in vitamin C. Try to consume 1000mg per day. Lemons, grapefruit, and oranges have an abundance of vitamin C in them. Try adding capsaicin to your diet. Capsaicin, which is found in peppers (red and chilli) helps relieve and reduce congestion. Chamomile Tea has strong anti-inflammatory properties. These flowers used in tea are a caffeine free option to help battle hay fever symptoms. You can also put the used tea bag on your eyes once it has cooled as a compress to soothe your eyes. Garlic boosts the immune system, decongests, has anti-inflammatory properties, and a natural antihistamine.

Some people swear by bee pollen. There are different forms to take the pollen, some use orally by a spoon and some use tablets. A study showed 94% of the participants had no allergy symptoms after taking an oral dose daily. Bee pollen is packed full of vitamins, folic acid, amino acids and proteins. This bee pollen can also have an all around positive effect to the body. It is said they will aid in an enhance to your energy. They can be used topically on psoriasis and eczema. They are good for the respiratory system and show positive effects on the lungs. Holistically bee pollen has been used to help fight addiction by helping to lower cravings by lowering impulse. Bee pollen is also a natural way to help boost fertility as it helps to stimulate ovaries.

My cousin suffers severely with these reactions to hay fever, through almost every season! She gets the common symptoms and it also causes her to get asthma. When she is at home she is actually hooked up to oxygen to give her some comfort from the asthma symptoms she endures. I only found out how bad she suffered and that she used oxygen at home when were on the phone last spring. While we were talking about her kids and the driving lessons Nanaimo has to offer she started sneezing, sniffling and wheezing and asked me to hold on while she grabbed her tank.

I can’t imagine, and I’m sure those of us who don’t suffer from hay fever couldn’t imagine something like someone just cutting grass can be enough to make someone react and have so many symptoms, or even onset and asthma attack. I had no idea hay fever could lead to someone requiring oxygen at home and it really made me think about what my cousin and a lot of other people who suffer from hay fever go through when they are away from home and ends up crossing paths with one of their allergens.

Does anyone else out there have someone they love who suffers from hay fever this bad? If you do I would love to hear your story!

Bee Stings

For the majority of the population a bee sting or insect bite is just a nuisance that is going to cause a few hours of bearable pain, but for some these stings and bites (because of the insect venom driving the immune system into overdrive) can cause mild to life-threatening repercussions.

If a bee sting or insect bite is something that drives your immune system into hypersensitivity you will most likely endure more swelling where you were stung than someone who isn’t allergic. You may also experience more pain, the site of the sting may be warm or hot to touch, itchy, or show bumpy spots. Some people can also have a full body reaction which can result in an outbreak of hives, nausea, vomiting, feeling light-headed or dizzy, and diarrhea.

Bee stings and insect bites can cause anaphylaxis in rare cases to certain people. This is very serious and requires quick emergency treatment. Not surprisingly it is said that 50% of the people who have a fatal reaction were not even aware that these insect stings were an allergen for them. If you have an allergic reaction to an insect sting or bite the odds are that if you encounter another sting or bite you will have the same or a worse reaction.

There are common types of insects that have the venom that can cause allergic reactions. Some of the most common suspects that cause these reactions are:

– Honeybees

– Yellow Jackets

– Paper Wasps

– Hornets

– Fire Ants

For people who are aware that they have a serious or life-threatening allergy to something, it is a very good idea for them to have an epi-pen with them at all times. An epi-pen is a quick source of epinephrine and is used to treat anaphylaxis. These can be life-saving in the case of an allergic reaction and are very easy to administer. Even if you are unsure if you’re experiencing anaphylaxis but think you may be it is advised to use the epi-pen. You will not be harmed using the epi-pen if it was a false alarm and you are not actually experiencing any allergy symptoms. It is always better to proceed on the side of caution when it comes to serious allergies. Epi-pens have saved many lives. I would urge anyone with a serious allergy to speak with their doctor about if this would be a good idea for you to carry.

Medical alert bracelets are a great everyday accessory for those with life-threatening allergies that they are aware of. If you don’t own one yet it is a great idea to think about getting one for yourself.

Food Allergies

Food allergies are among the common allergens. It is approximated that up to 15 million of the US population alone are affected by this type of allergen. There is a wide variety of foods that people can be allergic to. Some of the top foods that cause allergic reactions in people are milk, eggs, soy, fish, peanuts and tree nuts, and wheat.

Generally, food allergy reactions are mild, however, it is said every 3 minutes someone visits the emergency department due to a food allergy. Some symptoms that are presented include an itchy mouth, irritated or itchy skin sometimes presenting with hives or eczema, swollen parts of the face including lips, tongue and or throat, sinus congestion, wheezing, trouble with breathing, nausea, pain in the abdominal area, vomiting and feeling dizzy, light-headed, or even fainting.

It is believed that food allergies are on the rise. A study in 2013 showed food allergies in young children have risen 50% between 1997 and 2011. There is limited information as to why food allergies are becoming more common. You have a higher chance of having a food allergy if one or both of your parents has any allergies, not only food allergies but even having a parent who suffers from asthma increases your risk.

There are some allergies that can be outgrown in some cases. While nut and fish allergies are generally considered life-long, allergies to egg, milk and soy that are present in children can sometimes be outgrown.

Because allergies cannot be cured, the best way to handle and treat your allergies are to enforce recognition to what causes them and avoid the allergens specific to you. It is important to read food labels and make sure the correct measures have been taken to avoid cross contamination when you are eating somewhere new.