Like the dreaded peanut allergy, this type of allergy stays with you for life. Seafood allergies tend to get severe or worst as time goes by. Getting yourself thoroughly informed regarding this type of allergy, what food or food by products to avoid, and by knowing the appropriate treatment to address your symptoms is still the best arsenal to manage your seafood allergies.
First, determine the whole overview of seafood allergy. You generally tend to have a seafood allergy when there is an introduction of any kind or type of seafood that can spark or initiate a sudden reaction in your immune system. Seafood allergy is thought to be the highest risk kind of allergy for the afflicted to experience anaphylactic shock.
Diagnosing seafood allergy is done by submitting yourself to a thorough medical examination. A complete family and medical history is also done followed by several skin tests and a number of blood tests. Knowing the following symptoms that may happen once a reaction settles in is also vital in managing your seafood allergies. The following are the different symptoms present when a reaction occurs:
- Breathing difficulties
- Allergic rhinitis
- Light headedness
- Sore eyes
- Fluctuating blood pressure
- Presence of hives or rash
Knowing the different reactions to your seafood allergy can in turn help you in addressing such individually. Having a thorough knowledge of the above mentioned symptoms can also, in turn prepare you on the appropriate treatment for each.
There are several treatments available on how to address and manage your seafood allergy. The following are some of these measures:
Desensitization or the gradual introduction of the allergen, in this case a certain type of seafood can help in managing your seafood allergy. This is according to some studies. Since it is not yet a full blown discovery it is still best not to take risks and chances.
The best immediate treatment so far is to fully avoid eating seafood or any food items with seafood. Altogether avoid cephalopods, gastropods, crustaceans, shellfish, and vertebrates.
- Cephalopods – avoid octopus, squid, cuttlefish and calamari
- Gastropods – avoid snails, sea slugs and slugs
- Crustaceans – avoid the following : crayfish (crawfish and crawdads), lobster, prawns, langoustine, shrimp and sea urchin
- Shellfish – to restrain from eating the following: abalone, mussels, cockles, calamari (squid), clams, escargot ( snails), octopus, limpets, quahogs, oysters, scallops, and whelks
- Vertebrates ( fishes with backbone) – avoid the following: herring cod, tuna and salmon
Always carry self injecting epinephrine at all times. It is also best to be equipped with a stack of over-the-counter antihistamine or even natural antihistamine. The following are sources of natural antihistamine:
- Vitamin C which is a natural antihistamine and has an effect in the body by lessening and managing the presence of unpleasant symptoms of hay fever. It is then recommended to take 500 mg per day while symptoms do occur.
- Eyebright astringent herb aids in strengthening the mucous membranes which in turn may relieve inflammation and irritability. It has a substance called plantain which has mucilage that can soothe dry and sore eyes, and also relieves sneezing. This herb can be consumed in the form of tea or as a tincture.
- Quercetin which gives the grapes its purple color and tea its green tinge can inhibit histamine release.
- An effective arsenal against allergies is ginkgo biloba. Ginkgo biloba has a platelet activating factor or PAF which stops the activity of certain allergy triggering chemicals.
- Nettle which has a substance that works as an antihistamine.
It is also very vital to have a medical alert bracelet. Be cautious when dining out. Do try to avoid the following cuisines:
- Caesar salad
- Fruits de mer
- Frito misto
Be aware as much as possible. Read labels found on medicines, skin care products or other cosmetics, and other food products. Fortunately, seafood ingredients and by products are clearly spotted on labels. Be thoroughly cautious. Ask questions rather than risk taking chances that can be fatal to your health. Be vigilant about cross contamination that can happen through cooking and also be aware of airborne contamination that can happen.