Children’s seasonal allergies come from the body’s reactions to pollens and molds in the air when trees, flowers and grasses are putting out pollen during the spring. The body reacts in a few common ways. Read on to see if or confirm your notion that your child has seasonal allergies. Your child may have a few of these signs or all of them.
The top 5 signs of children’s seasonal allergies are:
- Nasal congestion and sniffling.
- Clear runny nose.
- The Allergic Salute.
- Throat clearing.
- Watery, itchy eyes.
Let’s Discuss These More:
Nasal congestion and sniffling.
This is a stuffy nose where mucus membranes are swollen and makes it hard to breathe easily through the nose. The natural tendency is to sniff the small amount of mucus. If they blow their nose, nothing comes out. Inflammation of the nasal mucus membranes is a reaction to the pollens and molds in the air. It causes a lot of sneezing, too.
If you look inside the nose, you will see swollen pale and a “boggy” surface to the membranes. When lying down to go to sleep at night, the congestion gets worse, the nose is more clogged and falling asleep may be longer than usual. Your child may wake up often during the night not being able to breathe through the nose.
When you cannot breathe through your nose, you instead breathe through your mouth. That makes your mouth very dry and can cause a sore throat. Now, we have a dry mouth and sore throat upon waking up in the morning. The joys of seasonal allergies!
Clear runny nose.
Seasonal allergies make the swollen, inflamed nasal membranes produce a lot of watery discharge. It can be like a faucet running profusely or a constant drip down the nose. This requires blowing and wiping the nose until it is sore and raw! Poor nose!
The Allergic Salute!
One very interesting sign of children’s seasonal allergies is called the Allergic Salute? This is a narrow line running in a horizontal arc across the lower nub of the nose that can be pale, pinker, or darker than the usual skin color. Seasonal allergies can make the nose itch- inside. Rub your nose as if it was itchy. Now, where do you make a crease? That’s it, the Allergic Salute! See it in the picture above of the girl.
Other itchy places are the eyes, roof of the mouth, back of the throat, and inside the ear canals.
Sometimes the nasal discharge drips down the back of your throat and clearing the throat makes you swallow it rather than having it pool in the throat. It can make you cough. All this postnasal drip can make the throat sore, too. Sometimes you can see clusters of small lymph glands in the back of the throat. This is inflammation of the lymph reacting to the allergens.
Watery, itchy eyes.
Seasonal allergies also cause swollen eyelids and red, blood-shot eyes. If you look inside the lower eyelid, you can see some a bumpiness or pebbles called “cobblestones” of the membrane. The membrane can swell and look like gelatin. If it is very severe, the eyelids are almost swollen shut. This needs prescription eye drops.
The eyes can also look dark or bluish under the lower lids. These are called Allergic Shiners!
There can be tiny horizontal lines or creases in the lower lids that begin near the corner of the eye and move toward the middle of the eyelid. These lines are called Dennies lines. You can also see Allergic Shiners and Dennies lines in the first girl with the Allergic Salute.
In brief, we can see that with children’s seasonal allergies, the eyes, nose and throat are all affected. There is nasal congestion, sniffling, a clear runny nose, and post nasal drip that causes throat clearing and further leads to mouth breathing and a sore throat. Itching the nose causes the Allergic Salute. The eyes may be watery, itchy, and have Allergic Shiners and Dennies lines.
Which of these signs does your child have? Contact me for help with your child.
Conventional medicine has a few drugs to treat seasonal allergies in kids. With mild symptoms, parents can give their child an antihistamine like Benadryl (diphenhydramine), Claritin (loratadine) or Zyrtec (cetryrizine). These help with the itchiness and are over-the-counter medicines sold in most pharmacies. But they do not help with the swelling and congestion in the nose or very swollen eyelids. For these signs, you may need to add in a nasal steroid spray, like Flonase (fluticasone) which is now over-the-counter, or a prescription nasal steroid spray, or an eye drop prescription specifically for the eyes.
All of these meds can have side effects. If you are looking for a more natural approach for your child’s seasonal allergies, please contact me for a Free 30 min Telephone Q & A Call with me.
Come back in the near future, I will write about natural medicine for children’s seasonal allergies.
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