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Allergy in Children

Besides eczema, children may develop an allergic rash (allergic dermatitis) after contact with an allergen or after eating certain foods. There may be severe itching, skin redness, rash, blisters and hives. Over time the skin may appear thick and scaly

Allergens causing rash

  • Chemicals and dyes in food or clothing and shoes
  • Foods like peanuts, seafoods or milk
  • Medicines used on the skin, such as topical antibiotic, anti-itch or anaesthetic cream
  • Nickel, a metal in some earrings, snaps, and buttons
  • Oral mouthwash and toothpaste
  • Plants
  • Skin care containing fragrance

Treatment of allergic rash

  • Allergy tests to determine the offending agents : patch test, skin prick test , blood test (serum IGE)
  • Food allergy test to milk, egg, peanut, soy and gluten
  • Food elimination diets where the child eliminate common trigger foods, one at a time
  • Topical moisturiser
  • Topical steroid or calcineurin inhibitors under dermatologist supervision

Hives or Urticaria

Hives are itchy red bumps or patches on the skin. They last for a few minutes to a few hours. They can come and go over a few days. Sometimes the skin around the eyes, mouth and genitals may be swollen (called angioedema). Hives are usually harmless but some children may develop difficulty breathing or the throat or tongue may swell. This is a medical emergency and you need to seek help immediately. Hives may appear without a known trigger

Common Triggers in hives

  • Foods like eggs, peanuts, soy or seafood
  • Medications like antibiotics or pain killers
  • Insect bites and stings
  • Preservatives and colouring
  • Rubber
  • Infections

Treatment of hives

  • Avoid trigger factors
  • Oral medication like antihistamines or steroids