Allergic reaction in people to different, even completely harmless substances, from year to year becomes more ambitious. Allergy occurs on the pollen of any particular plants, common foods, drugs and other substances. Every fourth inhabitant of our planet suffers from an allergy to this or that substance. At the same time, every tenth person is allergic to cats, that is, to substances that are produced in the body of these animals.
This is a very common problem that affects people of different ages. She does not shy away from children. When an adult already knows that he has an allergy to cats, he will never start such a pet. But, if there is a small child in the house, and his parents decide to have a cat, then no one knows if the baby is allergic to these pets. Sometimes, after purchasing a cat, parents find that it was impossible to do this, as their child suffers from allergies. If the cat was in the apartment before the baby was born, after the child was brought home from the maternity hospital, he might also have a strong reaction. After all, the particles in the room still remained, no matter how carefully cleaned up.
What are the causes of such an allergy? How to properly recognize it? And is it possible to somehow overcome this problem?
Very often there are cases of hereditary allergies. But this does not mean that the parent and the baby have an allergic reaction to the same thing. It often happens that allergens are different.
It is important to understand that scientists have long been disproved the opinion about wool allergy. In fact, the body of a person suffering from allergies, does not react to the cat's coat, but to certain proteins, which are part of the urine, skin and saliva of pets. These proteins are called Felis Domesticus Allergen. The opinion that it was wool that caused allergies is due to the fact that most of this substance is located on the pet's coat. But the protein also settles on the floor, on all objects and surfaces that are in the apartment, including children's furniture and toys.
Allergies can be caused not only by this substance, but also by others, which the cat usually brings from the street on its paws. This may be plant pollen, and various fungal spores. As an allergen, pet food or filler that you put in its tray can also act.
An organism can react to an allergen immediately, as soon as it has come into contact with the animal, or the child was in the same room with it. But sometimes the reaction manifests itself only within a few hours. Signs of allergies in this case are very similar to the symptoms of various colds. Therefore, they can be easily confused.
Here are the main signs that speak of an allergic reaction of the body to cats:
- When contact with an allergen occurs, eye redness is observed. They start watering.
- If contact with an allergen occurs within a few minutes, a child may begin symptoms such as sneezing. In addition, the allergen causes discharge from the nose of the baby, which is very reminiscent of a runny nose with a cold.
- Symptom is also a dry cough. Sometimes it becomes difficult for a child to breathe.
- If the baby has played with the cat, and after that he has scratches left, itchy in these places. The areas of skin that are around the meta scratches turn red.
- The baby is experiencing a breakdown and lethargy, which is why parents can also suspect the onset of the development of the flu or the common cold.
- The skin in the nose and around the eyes begins to itch.
- There may be various rashes.
Allergies to these furry pets in children can manifest themselves absolutely at any age, but most often this occurs in children aged 3 to 7 years. Sometimes it is very difficult for parents to determine that it is an allergy. A baby can communicate and play with his beloved pets for several years, and the first signs of allergy may occur after three years of age.
Scientists have conducted studies that as a result revealed that if a child contacts a cat almost from birth, then over time he has less chance of developing an allergy to a pet. Researchers attribute this to the fact that the baby's body simply gets used to the proteins that the cat's body secretes.
Since a cat allergy has the same symptoms as a reaction to many other substances, it is impossible to determine it visually. To understand that the child’s body reacts to a cat in this way, it is necessary to contact an allergist who will diagnose it. At the same time, this technique is used, which will be almost painless for the baby. On the skin make a scratch, which is smeared with a special solution. There are several types of such solutions. They contain one or another possible allergen. If a substance that causes allergies to a child is present in one of the solutions, the reaction will appear within 20 minutes after contact with the skin. Around the scratch, the skin will begin to turn red.
If you are almost sure that an allergy in a child manifests itself precisely on a cat, then it can certainly be determined by experiment. Give your pet to relatives or friends. During this period, it is necessary to observe how the body reacts to it. If after you have removed the cat from the house, the allergic reaction does not go away to "no", it means that any other substance is an allergen. A cat can be safely returned.
If you have a child in the house, and you have decided to have a cat, buy an animal with your child. This will greatly please the baby, as he will be able to choose a pet for himself. In addition, you can understand whether the child has a future favorite acute allergy. It is important to remember that allergies do not necessarily manifest immediately. Therefore, just in case, agree with the owners of the animal that in case of problems the animal can be returned.
How to fight
Unfortunately, scientists have not invented a tool that could beat an allergy. To combat its unpleasant manifestations used special drugs - antihistamines. They act on the body so that symptoms such as rashes, redness, itching, and others, pass away.
If you find out that your child has an allergic reaction to the cat, then the child will have to completely stop communicating and contact with these animals. If the child really wants a pet, but you are afraid of allergies, it is better to give preference to the puppy. Indeed, in this case, the chances of allergies are reduced several times. But sometimes the cat is so beloved animal that it is simply impossible to give it to someone. In this case, you need to take certain measures that will help minimize the number of allergens in the house.
- Remove from the house the elements of the situation in which most particles of various substances accumulate. These are carpets on the floor, various rugs, etc. If there is such an opportunity, instead of upholstered furniture with fabric upholstery, get leather.
- It is very important to maintain perfect cleanliness in the house. In all corners and on all surfaces you need to wipe the dust. Wet cleaning in the house should be done daily.
- All textile items such as curtains, bedspreads and bedding should be washed as often as possible. The same goes for clothes.
- Pet at least every week will need to be bathed.
- When the child is not at home, comb the cat's hair every day. If possible, this should be done on the street.
- Change the filler in the tray more often.
- Ventilate the room several times a day; purchase an air purifier.
- Limit the contact of the baby with the pet. Do not give the child tasks to care for him.
- Make sure that the cat is not in the room where the child is sleeping and playing.
- Always keep an antihistamine in your home.
Sometimes allergies manifest very dangerous symptoms. For example, laryngeal edema, asthma, etc. In this case, the pet from the house is better to remove. His presence in the house is too risky. If you really love your cat, give it to a good friend or family. So you can sometimes visit him, and be sure that he is in safe hands.
Are there any hypoallergenic rocks?
For those who suffer from allergies, but really want to buy a cat, it will be a disappointment that there are no cats that do not cause an allergic reaction. But there are animals in which the concentration of the allergen is slightly lower.
Less dangerous for allergy sufferers are these animals:
- Those individuals of both sexes who had undergone sterilization or castration procedures before puberty.
- A little kitten will not produce many allergens. But when he grows up, their number will increase.
- Cats produce less of these substances than cats.
- Pets with light wool are also safer.
There is a perception that hypoallergenic cats are those who have no hair at all, or those whose hair is curly and very short. But these pets will still produce an allergen, only in smaller quantities, plus it is somewhat easier to monitor the cleanliness of such animals.