Shrimp Allergy Symptoms
Shellfish allergies can cause severe reactions in individuals that are intolerant to the proteins in fish products. A reaction is usually due to an immune system response and can include many symptoms. People who are allergic to shellfish may also be allergic to crab, lobster, crayfish, oysters, clams, mussels, abalone, and shrimp. Shrimp allergy symptoms include hives, nausea, diarrhea, labored breathing, itching eyes, swelling of the throat, tongue, and airway, and in some instances can lead to anaphylactic shock. Other symptoms may include eczema, wheezing, abdominal pain, dizziness, and vomiting. Treatment will include epinephrine, antihistamines, and seeing a physician for further medical care. The only way to prevent a reaction is to avoid the allergen.
Fried foods at restaurants may be fried in the same oil as fish; so the chicken and the French fries may be fried in the same oil as the shrimp. A person who suffers with shrimp allergy symptoms may be allergic to some shrimp but not to other kinds of shellfish. A person who eats out frequently and has intolerance to some foods should find out how food is prepared especially if eating at a place that serves fish. To protect a person from unforeseen circumstances an auto-injector of epinephrine should be kept close at hand. This can help anyone that is susceptible to having an allergic reaction. Having food allergies can be very disconcerting and can make a person afraid to eat especially when eating away from home. The Lord can give a person joy in the midst of troubling circumstances. "The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusted in Him, and I am helped: therefore my heart greatly rejoiceth; and with my song will I praise Him" (Psalm 28:7).
Skin tests can help a person to find out exactly what he or she is allergic to including those who suffer with shellfish allergies. An allergist will expose the skin to different substances to measure the reaction. A reaction that is red and inflamed indicates positive for sensitivity. For food sensitivities the only treatment is to try and avoid the substance. Other types of allergens can usually be treated with immunotherapy. Immunotherapy is usually done by injection and consists of a small amount of the substance given through injection and then gradually increased until the person develops a tolerance to the substance.
Unpleasant reactions after eating can make a person fearful that they are allergic. In most cases it is best to get an examination and a skin test to confirm suspicions before assuming that there is a food allergy. A food that causes an immune response does so because of proteins that are resistant to cooking and digestion, that enter the bloodstream and cause reactions throughout the body. Typical sites in the body that are usually affected are the nose, throat, lungs, skin, and digestive system. This can be seen with shellfish allergies as the symptoms usually involve these systems.
Another way to tell if a food is causing a reaction is if the symptoms occur within an hour of eating. However, sometimes a response to a substance does not have to include ingesting it. For those who are highly susceptible just touching the food can cause a reaction. Some people who have shrimp allergy symptoms may not have to actually eat a piece of shrimp. Instead they may eat a hush puppy that was fried in the same oil with the shrimp or they might touch a piece of shrimp and then rub their eye. If this happens then the eye will immediately become inflamed and should be washed thoroughly with cool water. The person infected should also wash his or her hands as soon as possible to avoid further contamination.
Food allergies seem to be inherited and a child that has two parents that are allergic will usually develop them as well. Children do outgrow some allergies and can do so by the time they start to school. In children symptoms often manifest with eczema and asthma. Some sources believe that starting an infant on baby food too soon can cause sensitivities to some foods. Due to the possible occurrence of shellfish allergies some doctors recommend waiting until a child is three years old before introducing fish into the diet. Parents should make it a point to watch a child after introducing any new foods to determine if there may be sensitivity to that food. Some of the more common foods that can cause symptoms include but are not limited to milk and other dairy products, peanut butter, peanuts, walnuts, pecans, fish, soy, and wheat. A child that has developed eczema and or has asthma should be watched very carefully for reactions to foods. Pinpointing a substance that is causing a reaction can help a parent to avoid future problems.
Sometimes food sensitivities can start a reaction in a person within a few minutes of eating. The initial signs may include itching in the roof of the mouth and an increase in heart rate. After digestion begins nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain may follow. Once the substance enters the blood stream hives may start and then eventually the lungs will be affected where a person may have difficulty breathing or develop asthma. When this reaction escalates to the skin and the lungs being affected than a person should seek medical care as quickly as possible because the next thing to happen could very likely be a drop in blood pressure and anaphylaxis. People who are allergic to peanuts and those who suffer with shrimp allergy symptoms should never go anywhere without an auto-injector of epinephrine because the reaction can be life threatening.