Seasonal Allergies in Kids

Young kid with a season allergy in Austin, Texas.

Kids can suffer from seasonal allergies just like the rest of us—although, they usually will only affect your little one once they have reached 2 years of age.

If you need expert advice in dealing with your child’s allergies, call us at Pediatric Associates of Austin today! Our board-certified pediatricians in Austin, Texas will find the best solution to relieve your child of their symptoms.

What Are Seasonal Allergies?

Seasonal allergies are caused by allergens or substances that are more prominent during certain seasons. These types of allergies are often called hay fever, but the technical and more accurate name to describe them is allergic rhinitis.

Allergic reactions occur when the body’s immune system reacts to these harmless seasonal allergens as if they were attacking the body.

Seasonal Allergy Symptoms in Kids

Your child may have the following symptoms with a seasonal allergy:

  • A stuffy or runny nose
  • Sniffling
  • Sneezing
  • Nose rubbing
  • Throat clearing
  • Snorting
  • Itchy, runny eyes

Common Cause of Seasonal Allergies In Kids

There could be many allergens that cause an allergy in your child. Some of the most common seasonal allergy triggers are as follows:

  • Pollen from trees, grass, plants or weeds
  • Mold
  • Dust mites
  • Animal dander
  • Cockroach waste

The Difference Between a Cold and Allergies

Seasonal allergies and colds have very similar symptoms. However, it is still possible to distinguish between the two. Some of the differences between a cold and an allergy are as follows:

  • You will notice allergy symptoms during pollen season and reoccur around the same time of year
  • Colds usually last for 1-3 weeks
  • Allergies, on the other hand, can last for 6-8 weeks or more
  • While both can cause a runny nose, allergies can cause itchiness in the eyes and nose
  • A cold could cause a sore throat or fever, whereas an allergy won’t

Minimizing Exposure To Allergens

There are several things you can do to control allergy symptoms. This includes the following:

  • Stay indoors: Try to keep your child indoors when pollen counts are high.
  • Use air conditioners: Using your AC in your home and car can reduce the exposure to pollen.
  • Keep away from rotting leaves: Decaying leaves have high amounts of mold, especially in spring and late summer.
  • Dust out furniture: Dust can accumulate in upholstered furniture, rugs, and bedding. This can attract dust mites and their waste can cause allergies.
  • Wash linens frequently: Washing linen in hot water at least every 2 to 3 weeks will kill the dust mite.
  • Replace your pillows: You should buy new pillows every 2 to 3 years.
  • Wash their clothes when coming in from outside: This gets rid of any pollen that might have attached itself to your child’s clothing.

Seasonal Allergy Treatment

Treating your child’s seasonal allergy will depend on their symptoms, age, and general health. The severity of the allergies will also play a part in deciding what treatment to use. The following medications may be used to treat seasonal allergies:

  • Oral antihistamines. Antihistamines can help relieve hay fever symptoms such as a stuffy or runny nose, sneezing, and watery eyes. Examples of oral antihistamines include fexofenadine (Allegra Allergy), cetirizine (Zyrtec Allergy), and loratadine (Claritin, Alavert).
  • Oral decongestants. Oral decongestants like pseudoephedrine (Sudafed) can temporarily relieve nasal congestion. Some allergy medications contain both antihistamines and decongestants. These include cetirizine-pseudoephedrine (Zyrtec-D 12 Hour), loratadine-pseudoephedrine (Claritin-D), and fexofenadine-pseudoephedrine (Allegra-D 12 Hour Allergy and Congestion).
  • Corticosteroid nasal sprays. These nasal sprays can help improve some symptoms. Some examples are budesonide (Rhinocort Allergy), fluticasone propionate (Flonase Allergy Relief), and triamcinolone (Nasacort Allergy 24 Hour). Your healthcare provider can advise you about the long-term use of corticosteroid nasal sprays.
  • Cromolyn sodium nasal spray. This treatment works by blocking the release of immune system agents that cause symptoms. You should aim to start the treatment before your child is exposed to the allergens.
  • Allergy Shots: Some may benefit from allergy immunotherapy. Injections containing small amounts of the allergen are given over time. This helps reduce the immune response to these allergens.

Schedule an Appointment Today

If your child’s symptoms do not improve after taking allergy medicine, book an appointment with Pediatric Associates of Austin today! Our allergists in Austin, TX can perform allergy testing to determine the specific allergen-causing symptoms in your child. This can help you know which allergens to avoid and which treatment to use. Contact us now!


PAA Advance Practice Providers

Our PAA APP’s include: Amber Mercer, Annie Croft, Bridget Shen, Brooke Gonzalez, Caitlin Whiteman, Courtney Dudley, Emily Woodard, Emma McCarty, Erin Moore, Keena Chung, Lauren Karnesky, and Pam Dietrich