Novomed has a pediatrician who is also a highly experienced pediatric allergist and asthma expert, Dr Carlos Baptista. He can diagnose and manage all sorts of pediatric allergic disorders such as food, skin (eg, eczema), respiratory (asthma and allergic rhinitis), and digestive allergies.
Some of the main allergenic triggers are food, pets and pollen and the most common symptoms include skin rashes, respiratory difficulties and digestive problems. Allergies are also closely linked with the development of asthma and eczema.
The integrative approach that Novomed prides itself on, extends to allergy care and treatment. If a problem arises your pediatrician will form a multidisciplinary partnership, which depending on your child’s symptoms, may involve our specialist allergists, dietitians, dermatologists and/or naturopaths.
Children can be accurately tested for allergies from the age of 4 months. The most frequently implemented tests are:
Food allergies occur when the immune system has a reaction to a certain food type, mediated by Immunoglobin E. It can occur within minutes, or several hours after exposure, making identification of the allergen challenging. The most common food allergens in children are egg, milk, soy and wheat. Children can outgrow their food allergies, although the symptoms can be scary when first observed. Some of the most common include hives, itchiness, swollen lips and tongue, vomiting, diarrhea, difficulty breathing, dizziness and a tingling mouth. Avoidance of the food that is causing the reaction is mandatory, however it is important to talk to your pediatrician before making any extreme diet changes.
It is also worth noting that although bloating and excess gas can be signs of a food allergy, they are more likely to be a symptom of a food intolerance. Whilst uncomfortable, food intolerances are not the same as food allergies and do not require such drastic avoidance.
Atopic dermatitis is an inflammatory condition that can have multiple causes, including allergens, usually eaten or inhaled. Atopic dermatitis causes dry skin, redness, blisters, pigmentation changes and thickened skin. Patients with this condition are particularly prone to flare ups, however, most will experience the first symptoms in their first year of life. It usually runs in families, so if either parent suffers from sensitive skin, it is worth monitoring.
One third of cases are related to food allergies, and food colorings and additives are known to exasperate the condition. In addition, some foods including acidic citrus fruits, tomatoes and pineapples can cause non-allergenic skin irritation. Thus, parents are encouraged to keep food records so that possible irritants and allergens can be identified.
It is important to note that there is no scientific link between immunizations and atopic dermatitis.
The first-line treatment is moisturizer, which will soothe and hydrate the skin. In severe cases specific creams may be prescribed and wet wraps applied. Our specialist pediatric allergist and/or dermatologist will discuss these and other treatment options in detail with you.