What to look out for this Halloween

Both me and Dr. Callanan are members of American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. The allergists at the ACAAI recently compiled the following list of the common Halloween allergens with tips on how to avoid them. We thought it would be beneficial to share with everyone visiting our website!! These are taken directly from their website.

Bloodcurdling Scream to Frightening Wheeze

Haunted houses may be scary fun, but they can cause real-life fright if your child can’t breathe easily. Excitement and anxiety provoked by zombies, ghouls and goblins can sometimes trigger  asthma symptoms  if your child’s asthma isn’t properly controlled. Running from house to house in search of treats can also trigger symptoms. If your child has asthma or exercise-induced bronchoconstriction (EIB) be sure they carry emergency medicine, such as a quick-relief inhaler, and use it regularly as prescribed to prevent symptoms.

The Land of Milk and Stuffy

Halloween is a tricky time if your child has food allergies, especially to peanuts. But dairy, wheat and eggs are also common allergens found in different candies and other Halloween treats. Read product labels carefully before letting you child indulge in their sweets. Also, if you suspect your little one has a  food allergy , make sure to see an allergist for testing to identify all of your child’s triggers far in advance of Halloween festivities. Learn about allergy testing.

Petrifying Pumpkins

Jack-o-lanterns might be more than just a scary face if you have an allergy to pumpkin. Although a pumpkin allergy is rare, it can develop at any time, suggests research from the Annals of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. Anything from carving a pumpkin or munching on seeds can cause an allergic reaction with symptoms that can include chest tightness,  hives  and vomiting. If you experience symptoms, tell your allergist.

Horrifying Wardrobe Malfunctions

From the dusty clown costume that was retrieved from the attic to the mask made of latex to the nickel in jewelry, swords and other accessories, Halloween dress up can be a landmine of allergy and asthma triggers. Dress your allergic child wisely. Some kids also have contact dermatitis which can be caused from the preservatives in makeup. If you’re not sure what triggers your child’s allergies, see an allergist who can help pinpoint the problem.

Menacing Mold

While jumping through piles of leaves can be tempting for your little one as they are trick-or-treating, it can also be harmful. Molds, such as Alternaria, are commonly found on leaves this time of year and can cause severe asthma attacks. Running through leaves can cause mold to stir into the air, resulting in high exposure. Plan ahead and talk with your allergist about seasonal allergy and asthma triggers, and how they can be avoided. Allergies and asthma are serious diseases, that when left untreated, can be dangerous. If parents suspect their child has one of these conditions, they should make an appointment with a board-certified allergist to develop a treatment plan that may go beyond over-the-counter medications.