Find yourself saying “gesundheit” a lot lately? It’s one of the many signs that ALLERGY SEASON has arrived. For me, that means carrying tissues in my purse at all times and popping an antihistamine each morning. It’s the only way I can survive without feeling miserable all day. For our son, Andres, it’s itchy eyes and dry skin that gives it away. Oh, yes and the sporadic sneezing that comes in threes and fours. When he was younger, the consecutive sneezing made me think he might be catching a cold but now I know it’s likely caused by the pollen count that day. I spoke with Dr. Vivian Hernandez-Trujillo, Director of the Division of Allergy and Immunology at Nicklaus Children’s Hospital who told me it’s common for parents to confuse allergy symptoms with those of a cold.
Here’s the best way to know which one you’re likely dealing with:
If you’re pretty sure it’s not a cold but rather allergies that are affecting your child’s health it’s best to try to figure out exactly what is causing the symptoms. Exposure to animals, smoke, pollen, dust, foods, and mold are just a few things that cause allergies. Your best bet is to take note of anything new your child has been exposed to. If the symptoms persist, visit your doctor and consider having your child tested. In most cases, tests can be done on the skin or through a blood test.