When a person experiences allergic reaction after consuming peanut, this condition is referred to as peanut allergy. Its symptoms are very severe and are linked with anaphylaxis. Usually ninety percent children who suffer from nut allergies do not outgrow from their allergies. It remains throughout their life. Some of the foods containing peanuts are:
- Mixed nuts or ground
- Baked goods, Grain breads
- Ice cream, desserts
- Energy bars, Cereals, Marzipan, Granola
Symptoms of Peanut Allergy
The symptoms of peanut allergy are very severe and needs immediate treatment. Some of the symptoms are as follows:
- Hives, rashes or inflammation of the skin
- Runny nose
- Stomach cramps
- Tightening of the throat
- Irritation in mouth and throat
- Nauseated feeling
- Difficulty in breathing
Anaphylaxis: Peanut allergy leads to fatal reactions known as anaphylaxis. Anaphylaxis may also show other symptoms including the above mentioned symptoms. They are as follows:
- Pain in chest or tightness
- Increase in heartbeat
- Tightness or swelling of the throat
- Severe difficulty in breathing
- Cramps and pain in abdomen
- Shocked, low blood pressure, dizzy feeling, may lose consciousness.
Treatment of Peanut Allergy
The best way to avoid peanut allergic reactions is to keep away from peanuts. When a person suffers from anaphylaxis then one has to consult the medical expert immediately. If a person is already an anaphylaxis patient then that person should always carry two doses of epinephrine drug. In an emergency it is advisable to phone up 911 or the respective emergency number.
If the medical expert has advised for an epinephrine autoinjector then the patient should always carry doses of epinephrine. It should always be replaced with a new one before the date of expiry. Also there should always be extra autoinjector in case it gets damaged or lost. Patient should also know how to operate it and understand the symptoms as to when to inject the drug.
Other steps to keep away from exposure to peanut and ensure quick treatment for peanut allergy are as follows:
- Information: Children are usually affected by peanut allergies. Therefore school authorities namely principal, teachers and other respective people should be informed in advance about the peanut allergy, its symptoms and how to use the drugs. Also they should know to call the emergency care in serious case. Parents should also ensure that the child carries the drugs to school. Other family friends and relatives should also be informed about the allergy.
- One can wear medical identification bracelet (in case of serious anaphylaxis) that explains the allergy and need for emergency care.
- One should read the food labels carefully and shop in stores that provide peanut-free alternative food items. Also one should be very careful when eating in hotels. The person should clearly inform the hotel staff about the allergy. Since peanut allergies have serious symptoms one should always discuss about the diet to the chef or hotel manager. One can derive information about various peanut-free recipes from the respective specialized books.