The number of children needing hospital treatment for allergies is rising

hospital treatment

The number of children needing hospital treatment for allergies is rising

Allergies aren’t a new phenomenon. However, their prevalence is on the rise. According to Benadryl, there are 21 million adults with allergies in the UK and the figure is rising by 5% each year. Around 7% of children have food allergies and this number is on the rise. 

The causes of allergies

Our understanding of what causes allergies is growing, but there are still many questions we need to answer. Scientists say it could be down to a combination of factors, including:

  • Genetics
  • Being too clean
  • Diet during pregnancy
  • Pollution

However, none of these theories can explain the prevalence of all allergies or the increase at present. 

Increasing hospital visits

The number of children who received hospital treatment for their allergies has increased by 65% across England. In 2013/14, 2,873 teenagers needed treatment. In 2017/18, this rose to 4,743. As well as this, the number of children being treated for anaphylactic shock has increased by 41% in the past five years. 

Is it more dangerous?

The large increase in hospital treatments largely affected teenagers. Allergy professionals speculated this is a time where parental control became increasingly relaxed as children grew up. They might not question their food in the same their way parents did. However, it’s hard to ignore the incidents where children with allergies are being endangered through no fault of their own. 

In 2017, a schoolboy died after having a severe reaction to cheese which was thrown at him in school. Children have reported being scared to go to school because of classmates and teachers who don’t take their allergies seriously. Some parents have taken their children out of school believing the schools aren’t doing enough to safeguard the children. 

This lack of understanding can be fatal and there needs to be a focus on allergy education in schools if we want to keep more children safe. This will be especially important if the number of allergy-related hospital visits keeps rising.

The London Allergy and Immunology Centre helps give children and parents peace of mind by diagnosing allergy symptoms and providing expert treatments and preventative methods. We want to help remove the burden of allergies, so book an appointment today.

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