Our IG Live with UWS Allergist, Dr. Loewy
MVP talked Seasonal Allergies with a local allergist, Dr. Elizabeth Loewy.
We at MVP were lucky enough to have some time for a one on one conversation with Dr. Elizabeth Loewy, a beloved Upper West Side pediatric Allergist.
Here is a quick re-cap of our conversation from our Instagram Live:
- Symptoms of seasonal allergies in NYC start in late March- Early April and go through May.
- Fall allergies are usually to ragweed and runs August through the first frost.
- Symptoms may include: Mostly we are reacting to tree pollen. Main symptoms in younger children are rash- red spotted rash, which can go from head to toe that is itchy or eczema, and swollen eyes. Older kids usually develop the more typical allergy symptoms- runny nose, itchiness, sneezing, Asthma.
- Usually starts around age 5-6, but as young as 1 year old. Often starts during teen years.
- Preventative measures: Separate the child from the allergen. Great tips: Masks, hats, sunglasses. When you get inside, take off clothes and put the kid in the shower. Turn on the A/C which acts as a filter. Do not open the windows. Do not wear shoes in the apartment. Wipe down pets before they come into the house. Morning has higher pollen levels, so play outside later in the day if your child has bad allergies.
- Air filter are helpful, but you have to keep windows closed & clothing clean!
- Fun fact: Most of the time there is some family history.
- Treatment recommendations: Zyrtec or Allegra– dosing on bottle often is not sufficient- need to give a full dose for age. Protip: Zyrtec can be sedating, can give at night. Cannot overdose, is safe. Claritin is not recommended, doesn’t work as well.
- If nasal congestion is a big issue, you should use Nasocort or Flonase. Safe to use all daily.
- Eye drops over the counter- Pataday Extra Strength is a great option.
- Most kids do well with consistent use before the symptoms begin, keep going through the whole season. If we know there is a history of allergies start in mid-March.
- Saline and netty pots are harmless. Must be pure saline, clean out the nose and can make them more comfortable.
- Local honey is a mild form of oral desensitization, you are exposing yourself to the allergens in the environment. Check out the local farmer’s market for NY State honey.
- Kids who are not getting better sometimes need a short course of oral steroids. If just the eyes may need a steroid eye drop. Patanase for nose spray can help. Do not use Afrin.
- Allergy shots can be given as young as five years old. Really for kids with very severe allergies. Often for kids with bad seasonal and pet allergies.
- Blood testing for environmental allergies is only necessary if we aren’t sure if the diagnosis is allergies or not. Dr. Loewy does skin testing which is much better at picking up specific allergens.
If you are having a tough time managing your child’s allergies please reach out to us at MVP and we can help you manage.