But You Can’t Have Allergies Year-round!
When my kids were little, we took a lot of trips to explore this beautiful country. One of our journeys led us to Bryce Canyon in Utah. It's a beautiful red rock canyon full of hoodoos (spiral-shaped rock formations).
Even though we were at Bryce Canyon in late fall, the entire family took allergy medications - every day. We were miserable year-round, not just in the spring. And Middle Son's allergies were bad enough that he had just started allergy shots (immunotherapy).
Always eager to learn more about allergies
As we were gazing at the beauty of nature, we met some fellow tourists. We met a woman who was a pediatrician from the East Coast. So, of course, we had to start chatting about allergies and asthma. Since my kids had been recently diagnosed, I was always anxious to learn more. I thought this would be a great time to hear another viewpoint about allergies and asthma.
So, our family Allergy Doc was brilliant. He would patiently explain the "why" behind something. I wanted to know the mechanism behind allergies and asthma and how different medications work. I also wanted to make sure the kids and I were taking the proper medication at the right time.
Receiving unexpected judgment
I was surprised when the pediatrician I had met at Bryce Canyon said that my Allergy Doc was wrong - that it wasn't possible to have allergies year-round. And that our family shouldn't be using allergy medicines throughout the year...
I didn't know enough at the time to doubt her claims. And it put a damper on our beautiful trip. She made it sound like I wasn't a good mother for "giving my kids so much medication."
Allergy specialists versus pediatricians
Back home, at a follow-up with Allergy Doc, I relayed the experience to him. He sort of laughed and ran his fingers through his hair. He would always do that when he was thinking and figuring out what to do or say.
He said that allergy specialists and pediatricians treat allergies and asthma VERY differently. He said pediatricians had to know how to treat various problems like asthma, diabetes, strep throat, seizure disorders, car accidents, etc.
Allergy specialists can get personal
Pediatricians may know the basics about allergies and asthma, but there can be some complexities in allergies and asthma that they may not be experts in. And that's why he likes being an allergist to figure out each of his patient's individual needs. He said our family was an example of that because all 5 of us needed different allergy and asthma treatments! He said it could be hard to figure out the proper medication for each person.
Experiencing severe allergies
He said our allergies were so severe, and we were allergic to so many different things that we needed to stay on allergy medicine year-round. He said that controlling our allergies would help control our asthma. That was so reassuring to hear!
Eventually, all 3 of my kids would need YEARS of allergy shots. Those didn't "cure" their allergies but made them more manageable. We all still take allergy medicine every day and it's been working for us.
How are your environmental allergies? Are you someone who also needs allergy medicine year-round?
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