Food Allergies in Children
Surveys conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) concluded that food allergy diagnosis rate has increased by 18% during a decade (1997-2007). Every year around 3 million kids and teens are diagnosed with food allergies.
Younger children are more vulnerable to food allergies, than grown up children. Every year around 5-8% toddlers are diagnosed with food allergies although most of them overcome these allergies by the time they turn three.
The common symptoms of food allergies include vomiting, wheezing, breathing difficulties, nausea, diarrhea, abdominal pain, rashes, hives and mouth ulcers. It may take several hours or minutes before the allergens start acting within your child’s body. Some of the nasal symptoms like runny nose and congestion may not be caused by food allergies.
The most common forms of food allergies prevalent among children are:
Cow’s milk: Cow’s milk is the most common form of food allergy prevalent in the children. Around 2.5% of the infants are allergic towards cow’s milk. The milk allergy is caused by proteins present in the milk. Around 85% of the kids outgrow their milk allergies by the age of 5.
Wheat: Since a very small percentage of the children are allergic to wheat, health practitioners always advise to feed rice or oat cereals to kids till they turn 6-8 months.
Egg: Egg allergy is another common form of food allergy prevalent in children. Most of the kids are allergic towards the proteins present in the egg white and egg yolk. Many of the kids outgrow these allergies by the age of 5.
Soy: Allergy to soy affects 0.3% of the children, and most of them outgrow these allergies before they reach the age of 5. Soy allergy can occur in children, who are allergic to milk.
Peanut: Peanut allergy affects 0.6% of the children and it can also lead to life threatening situations in children suffering from asthma.
Seafood: Many kids are allergic to various forms of fish like codfish, shellfish etc. Mostly the reactions can be life threatening. Allergy to seafood is less likely to be outgrown during a lifetime.
If your kid is allergic to certain food item, then avoid giving it to them for the second time. You can reintroduce the food item once the kids attain a certain age.
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