Food allergies are on the rise, and it is extremely important to be aware of the procedures in dealing with them, especially in children. Allergies occur when an individual’s immune system identifies a particular food as foreign and attacks its proteins, known as allergens. A chemical, called histamine, is released due to exposure to the allergen, causing the reaction. Depending on the child’s sensitivity to the allergen, the allergic reaction can range anywhere from itching to possibly fatal. There are approximately 32 million Americans with food allergies, with 5.6 million of those under 18 years old. Peanut or tree nut allergies in particular in children have approximately tripled in the US between 1997 and 2008.
Common food allergies
These are the top 8 allergies to look out for in children:
Symptoms of an allergic reaction
Why food allergies are on the rise
Although doctors have not yet pinpointed why children's food allergies are increasing, they have come up with theories regarding the cause of this change:
Helping children with food allergies
There are many ways to help your child and family manage food allergies.
By Sriya Chinthalapudi