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The body’s immune system works to protect against harmful bacteria or viruses. Some children (as well as adults) suffer from an overly sensitive immune system that responds to harmless substances, such as allergens, and as a result the child develops an allergic reaction. Common allergy symptoms include sneezing, running nose, itchy eyes, sore throat, and headaches. Allergies can cause bloody noses. In more serious cases, they can also lead to or exacerbate respiratory problems such as asthma, bronchitis, coughing, wheezing, and shortness of breath. Besides these symptoms and ailments, allergies can also cause abdominal cramps, as well as affect sleep and behavior. Seasonal allergies are common since there is a great production of tree and flower pollen during this time period, but many are suffering from allergies to pets and food. Picky eating may be an indication of possible food allergies as the body is rejecting the food that might upset it. Allergies can cause anything from minor discomfort to serious health issues. Getting an allergy skin test will identify the specific allergens that cause allergic reactions.
Yes, Dr. Dyson performs allergy skin testing in his office on children two years of age and older. Quick and relatively painless, allergy skin testing was discovered over a century ago and is less likely to cause a reaction in someone with high sensitivity to certain allergens. The test is performed on your child’s back. The testing site will be cleaned with alcohol and then marked with ink to identify each allergen tested.
Afterward, the top layer of the skin gets pricked, which allows for the allergen to enter the corresponding spot. If your child is allergic to a specific allergen, that spot will begin to swell, with its size dependent on the sensitivity to the allergen. The skin reaction will reach its peak after fifteen to twenty minutes, with its appearance and sensation similar to that of a mosquito bite. The size of those reactions will show which allergens affect your child. Parents can take picture of their child’s back if they prefer. When the test is done, topical steroid cream will be applied to minimize the itching and swelling; after a fewhours, the reactions will subside.
The allergy skin test is a quick way to determine the root cause of your child’s allergies; it tests for sixty environmental allergens and ten food allergens. If you are concerned that your child might have a nut allergy, then Dr. Dyson will recommend a blood test since nut allergies are ot tested using skin testing. After the test is finished, Dr. Dyson will interpret the results and explain the severity of each allergy.
From his conveniently located office in Tucson, AZ, Dr. Dyson is easily accessible to address any of your questions. Allergies may be the cause of not only cold-like symptoms but also respiratory problems. After recognizing the allergens, Dr. Dyson will help you determine effective treatments for the symptoms. If your child is already taking over-the-counter allergy medication, but has not shown any improvement, please contact Dr. Dyson’s office to set up a consultation and discuss other possible alternatives, such as immunotherapy (or allergy therapy).