Peanut allergy is considered as the most common form of nut allergies and can be quite worrisome since the reactions can be severe. Aside from the life-threatening reactions, peanuts are hidden ingredients in different food products. Even though prevention is the best treatment, accidental ingestion of peanuts or eating nuts when the individual is not aware that he/she has an allergy can lead to a reaction which would require timely treatment. There are steps to take into consideration if an individual is suffering a nut allergy.
What are the types of nuts?
Nuts are available in different varieties including cashews, walnuts, Brazil nuts and almonds. Always remember that peanuts are legumes that grow under the ground. Even though peanuts are not tree nuts, individuals who are prone to peanut allergy can experience similar reactions to a tree nut allergy.
If an individual has one tree nut allergy, there is likelihood that he/she is allergic to other tree nuts as well. Nevertheless, a small percentage of individuals are allergic to both peanuts and tree nuts.
Measures to perform for nut allergy
- You have to bring the individual to the emergency department at the nearest hospital right away as the allergic reaction is developing. The doctor will immediately administer an injection of epinephrine which quickly eliminates the signs and symptoms of a reaction to nut allergy.
- The individual must consult a doctor regarding injectable epinephrine if he/she suffers from a severe nut allergy. An injectable epinephrine or commonly known as EpiPen can be carried by the individual wherever he/she goes. This is administered during a severe allergic reaction to nuts in order to counteract the symptoms until medical care can be provided. If you will enroll in a course on first aid, you will learn how to handle allergies.
- You can provide antihistamine medications to the individual or he/she can receive an injection at the nearest hospital in case he/she continues to suffer from some of the symptoms such as severe itchiness and hives. The antihistamine will not deal with the severe symptoms during a nut allergy but it can help relieve some of the uncomfortable reactions.
- With the help of oral steroids that can be prescribed by a doctor, it can help prevent the symptoms of a severe allergic reaction from occurring again. Always remember that oral steroids are prescribed by a doctor if required and must be taken as ordered.
Important considerations to bear in mind
Always remember that prevention is still the best way to avoid getting a nut allergy reaction. A severe reaction to nuts can be potentially fatal especially if it triggers an anaphylactic shock. You have to make sure that you will carefully read the labels of food products in order to avoid any possible triggers.
Peanuts might be present in peanut butter, beer nuts, peanut oil, baked products, chili, chocolate and sweets, salad dressings, marinades and glazes. Tree nuts are also present in nut extract, pesto, cereals, nut oils, cookies, crackers, energy bars, frozen desserts and marinades.
In addition, once you will eat outside, you have to inform the server of your allergy so that the food can be prepared from other items that might contain nuts.