An Emerging Epidemic: Food Allergies in America
The Discovery Channel recently released a documentary narrated by Steve Carrell about the food allergy epidemic in America. Click the following link to watch the documentary.
The September Asthma Epidemic…not just our imagination!
Ah, September…back to school. The return to school brings many new exciting things….new shoes, new backpacks, new classroom, new friends. But every year, all over the world, one problem recurs…worsening asthma.
Many people know that asthma often seems worse in the fall. Some families can almost predict when their next trip to the doctor might be. They are not alone. Recent research has helped us predict when hospitals can expect an increase in doctor and emergency room visits because of asthma and what age the children are likely to be.
Two Canadian researchers have looked at the trends in emergency room visits and hospital admissions for asthma in several countries over 14 years. They found that in every country studied, asthma admissions were most frequent for school age children 18 days after the first day of school. Asthma admissions peaked 2 days later for pre-school children, and 6 days later for adults. School age children, particularly those 6 to 7 years old, seemed to get sick the earliest and be the most seriously ill.
The most important and most common cause of worsening asthma in both groups was getting a “cold”. Children with asthma who did not need a hospital visit were more likely to use their controller medicine on a regular basis, even during the summer.
The return to school occurs with an increase in allergens in the air, such as mold or weed pollen. However, it is being with other children and catching a cold that puts children with asthma most at risk. School age children get sick first, especially those starting school full-time for the first year. Those children then pass their colds along to their younger brothers and sisters, and a few days later to their parents.
Children often have better asthma control in the summer and often stop using their controller medicine. This leaves them more likely to have their asthma worsen when they catch the viruses that are common by the third week of school. Children who use their controller medicine throughout the summer are less likely to have a severe asthma attack in September.
So what can you do to protect your child from a serious asthma attack in September?
The best thing you can do is to be sure your child’s asthma is very well controlled throughout the summer and especially once school starts. To help prevent colds, teach your children to wash their hands frequently and to cover up a cough. Use the controller medicine as prescribed and look out for early warning signs of worsening asthma. Follow your Asthma Action Plan and respond quickly to early signs of worsening asthma. If you do not have an Asthma Action Plan, see your doctor to discuss what to do if asthma worsens.
SIGNS OF WORSENING ASTHMA:
· Runny Nose, Sneezing
· Feeling Short of Breath with usual activity
· Decreased ability to exercise and play with friends
· Cough at night or early morning
Anaphylaxis Canada have released a new resourse handbook titled "Living Confidently with Food Allergy" The handbook provides need-to-know information on managing food allergies for families of recently diagnosed children.
Anaphylaxis Canada has also set up a new website - Newly Diagnosed Support Centre (NDSC), where you can:
These resources were created based on the results of a study - “Experiencing a first food allergic reaction: a survey of parents and caregivers perspectives” - which highlight the need for food allergy education and resources for families. Click here to see the press release about this study.
Can Eating Healthy Cause A Severe Allergic Reaction?
CBC's Marcy Markusa recently interviewed Dr. Allan Becker about fruits and vegetables potentially causing serious reactions in individuals with seasonal allergies, find out more by clicking the link!
World Asthma Day
May 7, 2013
World Asthma Day is an annual celebration organized by the Global Initiative for Asthma (GINA) to promote asthma awareness around the world. This year's theme is "You Can Control Your Asthma" and GINA is introducing a sub-theme "It's Time To Control Asthma". To find out more about World Asthma Day and GINA, please visit their website http://www.ginasthma.org
Study Links C-sections to Disease Susceptibility
New research shows that being born by C-section and being breastfed affects the bacteria fond in the baby’s gut. Some of these bacteria play an important role in the development of the immune system and possibly in the development of some diseases as children get older. Follow the links below to read more about these interesting findings.