Allergies

I am going to talk about allergies in children.  This vast subject raises a lot of unanswered questions, particularly for parents.  According to The Telegraph, allergies in children have tripled in the past 10 years with a worrying growth in severe or complex cases.  There has also been a recent large rise in children with eczema and asthma.  No conclusive answers are available as yet.

An allergy is a bad reaction to a protein in our environment called an allergen which is normally harmless.  Some causes are grass and tree pollens, dust mites, some foods (food intolerances are not the same as an allergy), flakes of pet skin or dander etc.  In an allergic reaction the body releases histamine from mast cells in the skin, nose, lungs, or intestines which can cause inflammation and swelling.  Symptoms are often itchy skin, wheezing, tissue swelling and well known diseases are hay fever, asthma, eczema etc.  Some people also react adversely to medication, insect bites or stings and materials such as latex, nickel and rubber.

A good website to look at if your child suffers from allergies is Kids Allergies www.kidsallergies.co.uk  Well At School www.wellatschool.org is another useful site that gives you ideas on how to get your concerns about a child’s allergy across to the school.  Allergy UK  www.allergyuk.org has information on childhood allergies and a helpline number 01322 619898.  Kids Aware www.kidsaware.co.uk has good information and several products designed to indicate your child has a serious allergy.

The NHS have a site www.nhs.uk and if you put ‘allergies’ in the search area there is a lot of useful information including relevant hospital clinics etc.  Unfortunately, not all hospitals have an allergy clinic and you might find yourself waiting a long time for an appointment or having to travel a distance.

Natural health practitioners have also seen a rise in children with allergies etc.  One local clinic that specialises in children’s allergies can be found at Mill House Clinic Tel: 015242 41753.  Allergies are a complex issue to treat, and you would be advised to seek help from a professional homeopath who will look at all aspects of the child, not just the symptoms of the allergy.

For homeopathy there is a lot of anecdotal evidence that people have been helped with their allergies.  There are also several clinical trials published in good journals that have shown a positive response –http://www.britishhomeopathic.org is a site where medical healthcare professionals (doctors, dentists etc) who use homeopathy within their conventional medical practices can be found.

Lara Stuart

Lara is an experienced complementary therapist. She obtained a BSc (Hons) in health sciences for complementary medicine and went on to train in reflexology, aromatherapy, reiki, homeopathy and Dr Bach flower remedies.

She is currently working on a Macmillan Unit providing complementary therapies for people who have cancer, and has a private practice in Lancaster. Lara can advise on health issues affecting the whole family.

If you would like to book a personal consultation please call Lara on 01524 824581

Any information given must not replace the advice from your doctor. If you are in any doubt about your symptoms, you must contact your GP.