Seasonal Allergies in Kids
The spring season brings a lot to look forward to, especially after enduring a long winter! But the warmer weather tends to bring pesky seasonal allergies along with it.
Allergies come and go with the changing seasons. Although they are common, they can be very uncomfortable to deal with – for both adults and children alike. Sometimes it can be difficult to tell the difference between seasonal allergies and a common cold. However, lingering symptoms like itchy and watery eyes and constant sneezing can be a tell-tale sign that allergies are the culprit.
“Seasonal allergies tend to begin in late March with tree pollen, followed by grass and weed pollen”, pediatric allergist Miren Guenechea-Sola explains. “Although environmental allergies can occur year round, patients with pollen allergies can have worsening symptoms from beginning of spring to end of fall.”
Allergies can be a real bummer for kids who want to play outside in the sunshine and fresh air. These tips can offer some much needed relief:
Stay hydrated: Constant sneezing and nose blowing can leave your child feeling dehydrated. Keep water close by, and encourage them to drink often.
Close the windows: It can be tempting to do when the sun is shining, but the outside breeze will bring pollen inside with it.
Breathe in some steam: Steam from a hot shower can help to sooth allergy symptoms, like blocked and irritated airways. Run the shower with the door closed to create your very own at-home steam treatment.
Cold compress: If your child is uncomfortable from watery, itchy eyes, putting a cold cloth or ice pack on the affected area can offer some relief.
Medication: Since every child is different, it’s important to talk to your pediatrician or allergist about the best medications to help them with their symptoms. Generally, taking over the counter allergy medications 2-4 weeks before allergy season starts can have a big impact. Over the counter medications include antihistamines that can be taken by mouth, nasal sprays to help stuffiness and sneezing, and eye drops for itchy eyes.
For more information about the Pediatric Pulmonology & Allergy Clinic at BMC, call 617.414.4841 or visit our website.