Do you have a food allergy? If you don’t, there’s a strong chance that someone close to you does suffer from some type of food allergy. Whether it’s your child, a friend, or another family member, food allergies can be very serious. Emergency rooms see over 200,000 food allergy-related visits each year. If someone you know is living with a food allergy, it’s imperative that you have a basic understanding of how food allergies can disrupt someone’s life.
The more you know, the better you can prevent a reaction and provide help in case of an emergency.
Educate yourself with these 5 food allergy facts:
1. There is no timeline for food allergy reactions
Hollywood has taught us that one bite of peanut butter can send a person into an itchy, red-faced allergic reaction. While some allergic reactions happen quickly, others take time to appear. There’s also no limit for the duration of a reaction; it may take a few minutes, a few hours, or even a full day.
Never assume that a certain food caused an allergic reaction. Get clear results from a food allergy test for definite answers.
2. Allergy symptoms may change with age
A young child could have extreme reactions to certain foods or food groups, but they may outgrown their allergies over time. Most children outgrow allergies, but some food allergies, such as nut and shellfish allergies, can stick with them for the rest of their lives.
3. Reaction severity depends on a variety of factors
Just like no two people are exactly alike, no two allergic reactions are the same. Some people have a hair trigger and can experience extreme reactions, while others may only get a small rash or itchy mouth. It’s important to pay attention and follow up with a food allergy test rather than just brushing off a small reaction. That rash on your child’s neck could be just a rash, or it could be caused by something more serious, like food allergies.
4. Anaphylaxis could be drawn out
Anaphylaxis or anaphylactic shock could indicate that a food allergy has grown into a dangerous situation. The symptoms of anaphylaxis may decline after the first appearance, but it’s important to monitor the patient for up to four hours after the reaction to check if epinephrine needs to be administered.
5. Pay careful attention to dosage
Reactions to food allergies often depends on the size of food consumed. Sometimes, this can mean that a teaspoon of a certain food may be fine, but several tablespoons can cause a serious reaction.
Need to test someone in your family for food allergies? CONTACT TEST SMARTLY LABS OR CALL (816) 800-9699 TODAY TO MAKE AN APPOINTMENT AT ANY OF OUR 4 KC-METRO LOCATIONS!