Kandi Waddles, MD, Lexington Clinic Pediatrics
My favorite seasons living in Kentucky are the spring and fall. My family loves to play outdoors this time of the year. However with the lovely four seasons here in the Bluegrass, we have an incredibly high incidence of allergies. Unfortunately allergies are often inherited, so if mom or dad is affected, your child will likely suffer from allergies as well.
Below are some of the symptoms of nasal allergies/allergic rhinitis:
-Sneezing, sniffling, frequent wiping of the nose
-Itchy, watery, often red eyes
-Fatigue, usually from not sleeping well at night
The most common triggers of nasal allergies:
- Dust- house dust mites found in furniture, carpet, bedding, including stuffed animals
- Mold and Pollen - very high often in Kentucky
- Dander- our family pet
If your child suffers from nasal allergies, a few things you can do include, keeping the windows closed to prevent pollen from coming in, as well as decreasing breezes which can stir up the dust inside the home. Try to keep your home clean as well as dry to reduce the amount of dust mite and mold inside the home. Wash the bedding in hot water every week, and consider mite proof covers on pillows and mattresses. Also remember to wash the stuffed animals that are on the bed every couple of weeks as well to reduce dust mite exposure. If your child appears to be allergic to an animal do not let the animal inside your home.
Talk to your pediatrician if your child’s nasal allergy symptoms interfere with his/her normal activities or are causing difficulty with sleep. Your pediatrician may recommend an anti-histamine or nasal spray to help control the symptoms. If your child’s allergy symptoms are severe your pediatrician may recommend a visit to an allergist for further evaluation.
With the appropriate treatment and proper environmental control a child with nasal allergies should be happy, healthy, and enjoy the great outdoors.