Some individuals suffer from pet allergies and cats are more likely to cause allergies than dogs. If the infant is suffering from cat allergy, it is likely that it runs in the family. In case one or both parents are allergic to pets, the child is at risk for developing the condition. Once you suspect that the child is allergic to cats, it is important to learn the symptoms so that you can take the appropriate action. When it comes to allergies, you have to be prepared to handle one by enrolling in a first aid course today.
Cat allergy or common cold
If you suspect that a child has cat allergy, it can be similar to a common cold. The symptoms of cat allergy include frequent sneezing, itchy eyes, coughing and a stuffed or runny nose. As for colds, they usually last for 3 days up to a week, although some symptoms can last for weeks.
In case the symptoms start to lessen, he/she is most likely to have a cold. The symptoms of cat allergy can last for as long as the infant is living with a cat. Since cat dander can easily travel around the house, the infant can develop symptoms even if the cat is in another room. Always remember that cat dander can circulate around the heating and ventilation systems and stay airborne for a long time. It can also accumulate in carpeting, curtains, stuffed animals, toys, clothing and furniture.
Hyperactive immune system
If the cat fur is responsible for causing cat allergy, the proteins that are present in the urine, saliva, sweat and dead flakes of skin are also responsible. Even a short-haired cat can shed dander and other allergens just like with the long-haired breeds.
The immune system among sensitive individuals erroneously interprets dander and other harmless substances as harmful. As a consequence, the immune system protects the body from this threat by producing antibodies, resulting to inflammation in the eyes, lungs, nasal passages or the skin. Once in contact with the cat allergens, the immune system can release chemicals along with histamine.
One of the most common types of asthma is allergic asthma. Once a child inhales cat allergens, the airways can become inflamed and produce thick mucus. The symptoms include chest tightness, difficulty breathing, cough as well as wheezing.
Asthma can become worse at nighttime and the child might have difficulty sleeping due to difficulty in breathing. During an attack, it is harder to breathe while lying down. If the child experiences the asthmatic symptoms, he/she should be taken to the doctor or hospital right away.
Contact with cats
Once the cat allergens came in direct contact with the skin of the child, he/she can develop redness, hives or eczema. Take note that eczema is a skin issue that causes elevated patches of swollen skin often accompanied by severe itchiness.