Childhood allergies

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Updated: 4/11/2007 2:45 pm
Children can have many different types of allergies. They may involve the eyes, nose, or skin, or manifest as asthma (AZZ-muh) or food allergies. Kids can be allergic to pets, peanuts, substances in the air, common cosmetics and household products, or to medicines, especially antibiotics. They also can be allergic to insect bites or stings, which can be potentially fatal. Sometimes allergies are inherited from parents, although a child's allergy to the same substance may have different symptoms and severity. Sometimes children grow out of them as they get older. Symptoms can include runny nose, itchy eyes, throat clearing, coughing, difficulty breathing, headaches, skin rashes, and hives, which are raised welts on the skin. If the child's symptoms are severe or unresponsive to medications, your doctor may recommend skin tests to help identify what might be triggering the allergic response. The doctor also might recommend some changes in the home environment that can help reduce or eliminate allergic reactions. That can mean anything from not allowing the family pet indoors to making your house as dust-free as possible. Check with a pediatrician for correct diagnosis and proper treatment of childhood allergies.

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