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To wonder where the allergies go?

(150 Posts)
Defnotsupergirl Thu 06-Mar-14 08:26:30

To start off I'm not saying there are not some very serious, life threatening allergies out there.

My wondering is why you don't come across more adults with these allergies. I work directly with 40 odd adults i.e. We share a fridge and working space etc. none of them have any allergies that I know of apart from one lady who has coeliac disease - and I'm assuming I would know if others did due to having to be careful about birthday cakes, only using certain parts of the fridge etc. no one refused cake or didn't use the fridge.

Up till four years ago I work with another group of people except about 80 of them and none had any known allergy.
None of my friends or acquaintances have ever said they have allergy problems despite me cooking for them and checking in many cases

If you compare with friends DCs school, five of the reception children in a class of 22 have some form of supposed food allergy. Apparently this is a reoccurring theme throughout the school.

Is it that people grow out of these allergies or is it the imagination of over careful parents who see an allergy every time their child vomits after a meal.

AIBU to suggest that there are not as many allergies around as is thought and that it is parents who are quick to blame simple bugs on allergies?

Please note - I again realise there are some life threatening allergies that exist and are a huge problem. This is for the other ones.

mrsjay Thu 06-Mar-14 09:13:44

I read somewhere that we are too clean these days we bleach and spray everywhere children are not allowed to get dirty so the body fights against something IYSWIM, not sure if that is true or not as i have a latex allergy and was rolling about making mud pies as a kid grin

mrsjay Thu 06-Mar-14 09:14:38

TBH most children with allergies rarely vomitand most parents i have worked with do know the difference between allergies and intolerance

Pagwatch Thu 06-Mar-14 09:19:04

Why would sharing a fridge space indicte to you that no one has allergies?

If I was working with you and had a dairy allergy how would you know by the contents of the fridge? How would you know that my flapjack is dairy free or my cupcakes are gluten free?

And given the 'allergies are just made up/a bug/attention seeking' guff, why would anyone talk about it?

Pobblewhohasnotoes Thu 06-Mar-14 09:20:40

I don't think I'm being neurotic or imagining my DS's eczema every time he eats a bit of cheese or drinks a bottle of milk. That and his reflux made his babyhood very stressful.

Vomiting has nothing to do with it, I think you're quite ignorant of how allergies can present itself.

Children grow out if it (not all). It also follows in families. My DH and my bil both had dairy allergies as children. I can assure you they played with mud pies.

It's probably picked up on more these days and treatment is available. I imagine years ago there wasn't much you could do about it.

Bodicea Thu 06-Mar-14 09:22:25

I am atopic as is my husband and my baby. My baby has terrible eczema which I struggle to control. That is inherited. The differece is there are now more allergens in our society all around us. Detergents, preservatives. People used to use simple soap bath less, not have central heating. I am depleting most of that out of home but cant control the outside world. So we are always going to have more breakouts than we would have had if we were born 100 years ago short of never leaving the house.
As for all the so called food allergies most are a load of rubbish - although i reckon the increased sugar in everones diet isnt good. If it is something that we were all eating a 100 years ago and there were no allergies to it then then it is quite clearly something else.

mrsjay Thu 06-Mar-14 09:23:11

you are right pobble years back people would be allergic to things with rashes and what not nobody would know what it was and put it down to *something else^ it is a bit like well Aspergers wasn't around in my day ( i have heard this) well it was just nobody knew what it was

Bodicea Thu 06-Mar-14 09:30:49

supergirl - the best thing you can do ig get rid off detergents in the house (that includes non bio) and just wash clothes in something like ecoballs or soap nuts. Look at the back of a non bio detergent it has a big x on it with the word irritant. Use a steam cleaner instead of floor cleaner. drop thermostat in house. Hand washes/ body washes also full of irritants - use traditional soap.
These things are the culprits of most sensitivities not major food groups.

arethereanyleftatall Thu 06-Mar-14 09:33:36

Adults do have allergies, but they control it themselves so you don't hear of it. Eg dh is allergic to kiwis so he doesn't eat them. No one need to know this. if dd, 3, was allergic to kiwis, I would need to tell her nursery, plus play dates without me.

Elfhame Thu 06-Mar-14 09:37:33

Bodicea, what do you mean most food allergies are a load of rubbish?

Daykin Thu 06-Mar-14 09:37:39

There is a shit load of research going on into allergies. You are not the only person to have clocked that there is a rise in the number of allergies and wondered why that is.

Allergies and intolerances are different things. One is not a more severe version of the other. An intolerance can provoke a much more severe reaction than an allergy.

Tbh, I really don't understand your post. You say you know allergies exist but 'this is for the other one'. What does that mean? The ones that don't exist? Which allergies don't exist?

The crux of it is, there is a rise in allergies, some allergies are outgrown so naturally more children are allergic than adults (although some allergies spring up in adulthood too). Children just learning to take responsibility for their allergy are more conspicuous than adults who simply don't order the prawn salad or take their tea without milk or turn down the snicker bar tray bake.

StressheadMcGee Thu 06-Mar-14 09:38:23

I have allergies to a range of food, and was discussing this issue with my consultant last month. He has a theory (which is just a theory, he stressed) that a disease in birch trees 30 odd years ago has caused an increase in food allergies - so there actually are more allergies around. Some of my colleagues know, especially those that bring in homemade cake to share, but the vast majority of people who I share the fridge with don't have a clue.

Daykin Thu 06-Mar-14 09:46:06

There is a European north/south divide in terms of prevalent allergies which corresponds to the birch line.

CinnabarRed Thu 06-Mar-14 09:53:06

A true allergy causes an immune system reaction that affects numerous organs in the body.

Intolerance symptoms often come on gradually and don't involve an immune system reaction. If you have a food intolerance, for example, you may be able to eat small amounts of the offending food without trouble.

Pagwatch Thu 06-Mar-14 09:54:33

That's interesting. Dd has just been diagnosed and birch was the first thing on the list.

Interestingly, two and a half weeks into excluding her multiple allergens her terribe excema has literally gone - vanished. And her morning and night time coughing too so I am hopeful about her asthma

Bodicea Thu 06-Mar-14 09:58:22

Food intolerances then - as in to dairy, wheat etc obviously there are some but a lots of people self diagnose so a big percentage are misdiagnosed. I knew one person that said he had a dairy intolerance but still ate yoghurts. Another who said she had been allergic to eggs since a child yet still cakes and other things containing eggs quite happily.
If one more person suggests to me my little boys eczema is down to a dairy allergy I will flip out. Do they think I might not have looked into that, spoke to specialists about it?

Elfhame Thu 06-Mar-14 09:59:23

I don't think intolerances are anything to be sniffed at, who would eat something if they knew it would make them sick?

And I say that as someone who does have kids who carry an epi-pen for life threatening allergies.

Elfhame Thu 06-Mar-14 10:01:05

people can react raw eggs but not cakes. That's because the protein that causes the reaction is broken down by cooking.

Elfhame Thu 06-Mar-14 10:01:41

Although some can react to traces in cakes.

DrDre Thu 06-Mar-14 10:02:54

You can be allergic to raw egg but not cooked egg. Perhaps she could tolerate it in cakes but not in a fried egg for example.

DrDre Thu 06-Mar-14 10:03:22

Cross post sorry.

monkeynuts123 Thu 06-Mar-14 10:04:27

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

Pagwatch Thu 06-Mar-14 10:04:45

Yep - DD can't have raw egg but can eat cake.

nennypops Thu 06-Mar-14 10:06:47

Your workplace is very unusual if there really are no other adults with allergies. It may well be that some have them but are able to manage them without making a song and dance about it - for instance, maybe they just don't use the work fridge - would you really know if one person out of 40 wasn't using it?

I have gone through the experience of developing an allergy for the first time within the last 10 years (sesame). No idea why, and it seems to be getting slightly worse in terms of the reaction I get if I eat some accidentally. It is absolutely not a bug or my imagination! Some of my workmates know about it just because if we go out to a restaurant together I've sometimes had to check with the waiter whether sesame or sesame oil have been used as ingredients, but if I keep anything in the office fridge it is wrapped and I don't need to ask anyone to leave a separate space for me.

Daykin Thu 06-Mar-14 10:07:55

If you have a food intolerance, for example, you may be able to eat small amounts of the offending food without trouble.

Same with an allergy. DS can eat almost half a teaspoon of peanut butter before a reaction (tested in hospital - I wasn't trying to kill him). Dbro can eat more that that but his seafood allergy is very sensitive. SIL is lactose intolerant and gets the shits if she has a drop of milk. Won't kill her but it's awful for her all the same.

Bodicea It's not unusual for people with lactose intolerance to be able to eat yoghurt as the lactose is converted. Some lactose intolerant people can also tolerate some kinds of cheese. You can be allergic to raw egg but be able to eat baked egg. Children outgrowing egg allergy go from being allergic to all egg, then being able to eat baked egg, then lightly cooked egg and then raw egg. The protein is changed by the cooking.

zoemaguire Thu 06-Mar-14 10:10:53

Problem is allergies are complicated. Dd is very allergic to dairy, carries an epipen. But she has got to the point where she can now cope with some low-casein very processed dairy - small amount of butter in cakes, and even cheese and onion hoolahoops (found that last one out by accident after a Halloween picnic in the dark blush.) Doesn't mean that a glass of milk couldn't kill her though. Likewise what causes minor reaction one month might not be ok at all if she has a chest infection and eczema flare up at that point. Anaphylaxis is much more likely if you are already ill. But I can imagine that some friends of ours think 'pft, she can eat butter fine, so they must be making it all up.'

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