31 answers

Allergy Relief for Kids

My little guy, 4, seems to have hay fever, although this year it seems to be the worst (for me too!) I have not taken him to the doctor for it yet, since I am trying over the counter medicine first. I wanted to see if any moms have come across an over the counter medicine that works well, or even a prescription. We have tried Claritin, and it does not seem to have the results I had been hoping for. Any suggestions?
Thanks,
E.

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My son at the age of 2 was diagnosed with asthma and allergies. He had a continuous cough and congestion in his nose. After several rounds of steroids and months of hearing him cough all night I took him to my chiropractor, Dr McKim (crystal lake), and after a few adjustments everything started to loosen up for him. The cough went away and after each treatment everything in his nose would flow out and then almost completely stop running. A year later we have not had one night where I listen to him cough all night and no stetoids because I bring him to see Dr. McKim before his allergy symptoms get too bad and an adjustment clears it right up.
I don't think it works this well for all children but I'm glad I gave it a try and able to manage withno drugs in his system.
For the adults suffering from allergies, I recently ended a cycle of allergies leading to sinus infections by using a Neti pot.

My son, 3yrs, suffers from seasonal allergies in the spring too. Mostly tree pollen right now and it has been bad this year. We recently went back to the doctor looking for a better alternative with few side effects. He told me to up the dosage of Zyrtec to 1tsp and use Zaditor antihystimine eye drops (both OTC) and he also prescribed a nasal spray Verimyst that has a very low dose of steroids compared to others. This has helped quite a bit! Good Luck...we go to Associated Allergists of Barrington

My 5 year old son has allergies as well and Claritin does not work for him either. Try over the counter Zyrtec. It comes in liquid or chewable, no reditabs like Claritin has, but my son has had pretty good results with Zyrtec.

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Hi, E.. I see you have a lot of responses, and I have read them all, looking for answers for my son, as well. When he was 6, I took him to an allergist in Crystal Lake, and left with 9 prescriptions. I have no doubt that she would've been happy to keep me purchasing those prescriptions for the rest of his life. There were drug reps in and out of the office the whole time we were there doing the allergy tests. I have found no relief for him yet, with either Claritin or Zyrtec and these were both prescribed. I recently went back to Zyrtec, OTC and nothing happened. It just does nothing for him. I am O.K. with that because I hate the thought of having to give him something, like Singulair and others, for the rest of his life. I've recently heard of another Doc in Crystal Lake that creates allergy shots in his office and teaches the parent how to administer so that you do not have to travel there every week. My son is 9 now, so this may work better for us. I have heard many testimonies of kids who are completely different kids after having been treated by him and an aquaintance of mine says her daughter is completely off of shots or anything else after two years. I am serioiusly considering this for my son because I hate seeing him miserable from April to November. If you would like the doc's name, let me know.

We never had much luck w/ perscription & I am leary of Zyrtec, but OTC children's benadryl works great for my kids.

Also, consider food sensitivities, as the symptom are very similar. Cut out dairy (can take up to 3 weeks) & see if that helps. Wheat can be a culprit to Consider a chiropractic consulation - as an adult a few adjustments & one acupuncture treatment cured a sinus infection that steriods & antiboitics did not touch. I was skeptical at first, but two days & I felt like a new person. Good luck. Happy Mother's Day.

The test my pediatrician told me was to try Benadryl. Make sure it is plain Benadryl and not one of the mixed ones. If this relieves the symptoms, it's allergies. You can keep taking it, but often makes kids (adults too) sleepy, if not goofy. Then the OTC variety is called for. They do not work as well as Benadryl he said, and do take some time to work/build up in the system. He recommended Claratin and Zyrtec. One other natural option is to find a local honey maker/bee farmer. I'm trying to find one myself for similar reasons.

My 3-year old has allergies and we've found Zyrtec works really well.

Hi E.,
Alright, this may be a little "out there" for you, but I've been taking my 3 yr. old son to see Dr. Heather Wisniewski at Restorative Health Care in Glen Ellyn. She practices allergy elimination (a series of non-invasive treatments that help eliminate the allergic reactions you experience from food and environmental allergens). If you're interested in learning more, check out her website: www.restorativehealthcare.com
I'm not sure where you live, but I'm pretty sure there are also other doctors who practice this technique.
Take care!

My son is on Nasonex. It is a prescription, but it seems to be working for him. He was prescribed Claritin as a back up in case. I've seen a lot of people recommending Zyrtec. My nephews are both on that and tolerate it well. However, it isn't well tolerated by everyone. My son was on it for 3 days and was a different child until that medicine was out of his system. He had meltdowns, got hysterical and had all kinds of sleep disturbances. It was awful. Hence the Nasonex. I don't know how sensitive your child is to medicines, but I just thought I'd mention it as a caution. Good luck to the both of you!

I see you're from Crystal Lake...go to Preeti Vemuri at Mercy in C.L. She's fantastic, especially with kids! I finally took my son to an allergist for the first time last fall. (he just turned 13 and has had allergies for years) It really is necessary to find out what your son is allergic to and the scratch test is completely painless. I found out mine is allergic to cats, dust mites, grass, weeds and ragweed! Over the years we have tried Zyrtec, (didn't work) D'Allergy Jr., (worked pretty well for a while) and now he's on Singulair daily with D'Allergy only as needed. He's been doing pretty well, but we'll see what the next month brings! Once you know what he's allergic to you can make environmental changes if necessary. We bought mattress and pillow covers to protect from dust mites and it made a huge difference. I hate seeing him suffer all the time, but at least now we know what we're up against and can try to take measures to make life a little more comfortable for him. Good luck!

Hi E.-
With both my kids (1 & 5) I have had fairly good luck with Children's benadryl-the liquid, not chewable. Claritin never worked for my 5yr old so that's when I tried benadryl & it seemed to get better after 2 days.
Good luck!
J.

i know this sounds kind of harsh, but let his body fight it out. we as a society are too quick to use medicine to "fix" every problem. my mom is a nurse; and when i was young, she always made sure i had allergy and asthma medicines to keep me going. when i turned 18, i just decided i didn't want to take medicine anymore, and it worked. i let my body fight it out, and by the next year, i noticed how different i was during allergy season. even now, i only use an inhaler for emergency purposes and right before heavy physical activity. my son showed signs of allergies, and i decided to let his body develop its own immunity to the outside. he is now 15, with only very slight problems during the first couple of weeks of spring. u might look into a more holistic approach to alleviating his symptoms. the human body is an amazing machine. let it do its job.

My daughter has had good luck with Zyrtec.
I hope this helps.

My daughter (6 yrs) and I have been experiencing the worst allergy season to date. Our Family Practitioner prescribed Zyrtec chewable for my daughter, which is available OC in the morning, and a tps. and half of Benadryl in the evening. The combination seems to work. This week she's only been taking her chewable in the morning before school. I'm allergic to everything but dogs. And no food allergies. My med combination is Claritin during the day, and Benadryl in the evening. I'm nursing my 8 month old son, so I try not to use that combination everyday.

Also, I've heard great things about Dr. Kelly Newhall. I'm planning on scheduling an appointment soon for both of us.

My four year old daughter started requiring allergy medicine this time of year last year. She is on Claritin in the morning and perscription singular in the evening. My doctor said just one doesn't do the trick (as we noticed). I would talk with your ped.

My daughter, 4 on Tuesday, has allergies and since I don't have them myself I had no idea how to treat them. We tired Claritin with no help, she had a continuious cough. I talked with the doctor last week and he told us to increase her dose from 1 tsp to 2 tsp and it's helped tremendously. Talk to your doctor maybe this is an option for him.

I agree with many of the parents. I tend to give Benadryl at night and naptime. Or the pediatrician recommends Zyrtec, but we haven't been able to get my daughter to take it yet. I also recommend investing in a really good air purifier in her room at a minimum.

If your looking for something alternative, I represent a company called Reliv. You can check them out on-line at Reliv.com. Many people have had great results with allergies. These products are patented nutritional supplements and are very safe for who ever wants better health. Let me know it you want more info, ____@____.com.

My son at the age of 2 was diagnosed with asthma and allergies. He had a continuous cough and congestion in his nose. After several rounds of steroids and months of hearing him cough all night I took him to my chiropractor, Dr McKim (crystal lake), and after a few adjustments everything started to loosen up for him. The cough went away and after each treatment everything in his nose would flow out and then almost completely stop running. A year later we have not had one night where I listen to him cough all night and no stetoids because I bring him to see Dr. McKim before his allergy symptoms get too bad and an adjustment clears it right up.
I don't think it works this well for all children but I'm glad I gave it a try and able to manage withno drugs in his system.
For the adults suffering from allergies, I recently ended a cycle of allergies leading to sinus infections by using a Neti pot.

If you have not taken him to an allergist you should do so, just to see what he is allergic to. My daughter has a dust mite allergy and you need to stay on top of that in your home by regular sheet changing, carpet cleaning, etc. No carpets are best. I don't know where you're located but Associated Allergists on Lincoln right near Webster is great. Ask for Dr. Kelly Newhall, she's wonderful with kids. Good luck!

vitamin c with quercetin (quercetin is a natural antihistimine and can help) or you may try something pretty inexpensive I found at Walmart last night, near the Breathe-right strips called Simply Gargle for Allergies and Hayfever. It's a salt water gargle with vit c, b-12, a, grape seed extract and quercetin extract. you might also find something good at Whole Foods, Vitamin Shoppe or Fruitful yield that is safe and not pharmaceutical. Decongestants can often cause rebound sinus swelling which is worse. Avoid foods -as much as possible that cause mucus, such as dairy or chocolate, or wheat during times of hayfever.

Hi E.,

My experience with the allergies, is short lived. my 12 yr old was daignosed with asthma, induced by allergies (and colds). She had a history of pnuemonia (twice) and so the breathing troubles were not entirely new. She has seasonal allergies. I cannot imagine any way of removing the allergen. She only takes her meds during the seasons that are bothering her. Since most are pretty fast acting and don't require a buildup in the system to become effective, we don't give her the meds all year. Only in the spring and fall. She takes Zyrtec (now available OTC) and Singulair. We have also given her the Walgreens brand of Claritin with decent success but it doesn't give her the relief that the others provide. One is a chewable, and one is a swallow pill..I forget which is which.

My daughter also needs a rescue inhaler that she only uses when she's wheezing... sometimes (like right now... just about every tree in our neighborhood is loaded with blooms!) the two meds in combination aren't quite enough for her. We took my son on a walk last night, just me and her, and by the end of the 30 minute walk, she was congested and a bit wheezy :( She uses an albuterol inhaler and only needs it about 5-6 times a year.

We did not take her to an allergist to have her tested for each allergen... that may come if we see her symptoms worsening, because we understand that allergies can evolve over time. My husband who is allergic to cats, is now developing seasonal allergies as well, and I am developing some seasonal ones too...

sorry - i am getting off topic - try taking him to your doctor, so he can give you feedback and recommend something. If you have insurance, a prescription will be cheaper than OTC products and likely be most effective (though a lot of meds that are OTC started as prescriptions...) But your doc will know more about what WILL work, knowing that Claritin DOESN'T work.

Good luck... hope your little one finds some relief soon.

My son, 3yrs, suffers from seasonal allergies in the spring too. Mostly tree pollen right now and it has been bad this year. We recently went back to the doctor looking for a better alternative with few side effects. He told me to up the dosage of Zyrtec to 1tsp and use Zaditor antihystimine eye drops (both OTC) and he also prescribed a nasal spray Verimyst that has a very low dose of steroids compared to others. This has helped quite a bit! Good Luck...we go to Associated Allergists of Barrington

E.,
This is hard on little ones as well as adults. Have you focused on diet? That may sound odd, however, an increase in raw fruits and veggies can help. I do work with nutrition and many clients have had great results with focusing on a whole food approach as opposed to medication.
Happy mothers day!!
N. - Nutrition Naturally
www.jp4ahealthieryou.com

If you do try zyrtec please give it to him at night or it will cause drowsiness during the day.

Dear E.,

I know my response will be a little diffrent than the rest. I am not a believer in giving children daily meds, presciption or over the counter. I think this daily taxes the liver, which can lead to other problems down the road. The meds just act as a "cover up"- not actually treating the problem.

I think the allergy testing is very helpful, in that, it helps to identify what is specifically causing flare-ups.

In the meantime, I wouuld be happy to share some natural alternatives which have been very helpful for my family and many others. Natural remedies have NO side effects- only side benefits.

Happy Spring!

T.

My 5 year old son has allergies as well and Claritin does not work for him either. Try over the counter Zyrtec. It comes in liquid or chewable, no reditabs like Claritin has, but my son has had pretty good results with Zyrtec.

As someone who suffered (and I do mean suffered) as a child with seasonal allergies, I'd say, whatever you do, don't do nothing. We are so fortunate to have a whole new generation of allergy medications that allow normal functioning. When I was a teenager, the entire spring season was a miserable blur. The only medication that was available to give relief was benedryl, and you will notice that many OTC "sleep aids" are just benedryl. Most people will just sleep when they take it. It's fine at night, but not practical for many people during the day.

Anyway, there are wonderful, safe alternatives these days. My son's been taking Zyrtec with pretty good results. I noticed other people mentioned Nasonex, which I take and find to be amazing, and Singulair, which I also take during the worst part of the allergy season (although not sure it's safe for kids). Today I spent the whole day outside gardening and at my son's Tball game. If it wasn't for the meds on the market now, I would have literally been in bed the entire weekend with the windows all closed!

Anyway, whatever you try, give the dose at night only, for the first couple of days, and see if that brings some relief. A lot of the coughing and post-nasal sinus stuff will happen at night anyway, so even treating at night can bring relief during the day. If you suspect seasonal spring allergies, if she spends the whole day outside make sure she takes a bath to wash all pollen off (hair too) before bed. Keep her bedroom windows closed at night.

Also, check out her classroom. I was in my son's class last week and one of the kids is just red-eyed and tearing with horrible allergies, and the teacher had a fan in the window with a flowering tree outside. Of course since the teacher doesn't have allergies, she didn't realize what a bad set up it was. (Avoid fans in your daughter's room too - they just stir up any dust in the air and move pollen around.)

Ask the pharmacist. They are so experienced with the different Sudafeds for the symptoms your child is displaying. My pharmacist saved me quite a few trips to the dr. when the children were little. Happy Mothers Day.

My son is 4 too - his allergies to spring has progressively worsen each springtime over the past three years. This year it started a whole month early. The only thing that worked for him is Singulair - which is a prescription. That was the only thing he took last year.

This year he takes Singulair at night, Clairitin in the AM with drops for eyes and Nasonex nasel spray at night and the AM - his eyes are swollen shut and he is very congested each AM. He is still miserable.

He has to have a shower everynight to wash off all the particles and every morning to get his swelling down. I keep his windows closed in his room, and probably should keep his door to his room shut all day to keep down the allergins. Also make sure your son washes his hands after being outside.

We tried Zyrtec last year - no help - Claritin didn't work alone either. We haven't tried anything else - my goal is to keep him comfortable - it does seem to taper off in June or so - whenever things stop growing and pollenating.

If you need a good ENT - Dr. Christopher Hampson at Midwest ENT in Geneva - also an office in Wheaton - is very good. Your regular pediatrician should be able to recommend an allergy medicine too.

Granted my case may be a bit extreme - or it is just a REALLY bad year.

Good luck

are you sure that it is hayfever? my fiance spent about 10 years of his life treating "hayfever" and it turned out that he was allergic to casein (the protein in dairy products). the symptoms are often identical -- itchy eyes, runny nose, congestion, headaches. the difficult pinpointing for us was that casein is in just about ALL processed foods (in addition to having to cut out all dairy - cottage cheese, yogurt, milk, cheese - we also have to watch for whey, milk proteins, etc on packaging). just a thought.

E., for the past 4 years or so I have been involved with a nutrition products company called Reliv International. I'm not a sales person, just keep up my own distributorship because I don't like all the hipe; however, it occurred to me the other day that i have not had seasonal allergies in 5 years and in general have been healthier than ever. The products balance out the body and seem to make a lot of things better, but I would not be prepared to make medical claims. If you would like more info, I'll connect you with someone who could provide it to you or I could tell you some myself. Good luck to you and the baby!

My son uses Zyrtec- started as an Rx, now it's OTC. I also take Zyrtec and it helps me.

Children's Zrtec has worked great for us. It comes in liquid or grape chewables.

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