Around 50 million Americans live with a food allergy, including up to 6% of children and 4% of adults. Food allergies can range from mild to severe and can be caused by any food. The top 8 foods that cause an allergy are:
- Tree nuts
Common Symptoms of A Food Allergy
If you develop symptoms within minutes or hours after eating or touching a food, you may have a food allergy. These symptoms can include:
- Vomiting or stomach cramps
- Wheezing, cough, or shortness of breath
- Swelling in your tongue or mouth
- Tight, hoarse throat
- Weak pulse
- Anaphylaxis (typically at least 2 symptoms from 2 different body systems)
Food Allergy Testing and Treatment
The Columbia Allergy team provides a variety of food allergy tests, including skin prick and laboratory testing. Supervised oral food challenges are also offered to confirm a food allergy. Historically, the only option for patients with this type of allergy was to avoid the food and carry an injectable epinephrine. Now, there are a variety of testing and treatment options available.
In addition to prescribing an epinephrine auto-injector, the Columbia Allergy team can provide treatment for even the most severe food allergies. Columbia Allergy offers long term treatments such as oral immunotherapy (OIT) and sublingual immunotherapy (SLIT) to desensitize the immune system for the allergen to no longer appear as a threat.
If you are suffering from a food allergy, call your nearest location or schedule an appointment online today!