Does Your Child Have Allergies?

You don’t just have to put up with your child’s allergies. If you’re not getting good relief with over-the- counter medicines, or you’ve experienced a severe reaction, it’s time to get a diagnosis.

When a person’s immune system reacts to a substance as though it’s harmful, an allergic reaction takes place. Childhood allergies were thrown into the spotlight last year when a three-year-old toddler had a severe allergic reaction to peanuts eaten by other passengers on board a Singapore Airlines flight. The boy experienced vomiting, swollen eyes, and was unable to speak properly.

“The most common kinds of allergies in Singaporean children relate to peanuts, egg and shellfish,” says Dr Soh Jian Yi, Consultant, Division of Paediatric Allergy, Immunology & Rheumatology at National University Hospital. “We do not know for sure if allergies among kids have been on the rise in recent years, but it seems to be so, based on the number of children we are seeing. This rise may be related to increased awareness of allergies, as well as excessive cleaning habits.”

Here’s what to do if you suspect that your child has an allergy.

TEXT: Additional Reporting: Lisa Twang