Allergies are a lot more common and well known these days and regularly affect both adults and children in varying degrees of severity. Some types of allergy are more likely to affect adults while others are only really found in children. Allergies are caused by an immune system response to something that it deems a threat, which are more commonly known as allergens. There are many thousands of potential allergens that can be found in just about everything. However until recently I hadn’t realised how often fruit was a cause of allergy in children (allergi børn is the Danish term).
At the beginning of summer last year my daughter started to complain of headaches that she found to be really debilitating. We all assumed that she needed glasses as she is an avid reader and is rarely found without her nose in a book. So off we went to the opticians who pronounced her eye sight perfect. He recommended that we go and see the doctor for a check up, which we did immediately. The doctor carried out several tests and decided that as my daughter was otherwise in perfect health we should keep a food and activity diary for the next fortnight.
So we noted down everything that my daughter did, ate and drank and the times when the headaches appeared, how long they lasted and their severity. I had been doing my own research in the meantime and figured that the symptoms seemed to be pointing to the fact that my daughter was suffering from an allergy or intolerance to something. So I had been paying close attention to the food eaten immediately before an attack and the only common denominator that I could find was strawberries and strawberry products. But to be honest I dismissed this without a great deal of thought. After all fruit is supposed to be vital for a healthy child and could therefore not be a cause of allergy in children.
Well as it turned out I was completely wrong because fruit is a common cause of allergy in children and strawberries were the culprit for my daughter. Not only would she now have to avoid eating the fruit itself but she would have to be very careful about ingesting anything that contained strawberry extract. She would also have to carry anti-histamine tablets around with her and some migraine tablets just in case. But she is dealing with it all very well and is just happy to be able to control the number of headaches she gets. Since we have learnt about this type of allergy in children my niece has also been diagnosed with a strawberry allergy and my daughter’s friend at school has developed a severe allergy to bananas.
So you see there are many different causes of allergy in children and sometimes it is the things that we least expect that are the culprits. If you think that your child may be suffering from one of the many different types of allergy in children then consult a medical professional as soon as possible so that you can start to help your child manage their allergy rather than their allergy manage them.