Common Childhood Allergies and How to Treat Them

02 July 2019

Chronic coughs, late-night sneezing fits and skin conditions like eczema and hives are common examples of childhood allergies. Here’s how Traditional Chinese Medicine can help relieve them.

Mild allergies are a common problem for young children.  According to Zhou Yan, TCM physician at Eu Yan Sang Premier TCM Centre @ Camden, allergic reactions occur when the body’s immune system reacts to allergens.

Allergies depend on internal (genetic) as well as external factors. “Each individual’s body constitution is different,” Zhou Yan points out. “Some people are more sensitive to certain allergens. Sometimes, this sensitivity is passed down from the parents. If one parent has a sensitive constitution, then the child has a 30 per cent likelihood of having the same constitution. If both parents have a sensitive constitution, this likelihood rises to above 50 per cent.”

However, TCM practitioners like Zhou Yan believe that children are more susceptible to external allergens as “they are still growing and their internal organs and immune systems are still developing”.  These allergens can take the form of food or household products. In Singapore, the most common allergens are house dust mites. Dust and pollen can also trigger allergic reactions when the fine particles are inhaled, adds Zhou Yan.

Unlike Western medicine, TCM treatments don’t just address the symptoms but get to the root of the condition. Based on the belief that allergic problems are due to a dysfunction of the lungs, spleen and kidney, and body fluid imbalance, the treatments therefore target these areas accordingly, with the aim of reconciling the internal organs, body fluids and yin-yang balance, explains Xiao Li Ming, TCM practitioner at Si En TCM Medical Clinic. “Generally, herbal medication would be prescribed – to alleviate discomfort and nourish the internal organs, particularly the liver and spleen – to help reduce the allergic reaction over time,” she says.

Scroll through the gallery to find out what the typical TCM treatments are for these common allergies!

OUR EXPERTS:

Xiao Li Ming, TCM practitioner at Si En TCM Medical Clinic

Zhou Yan, TCM physician at Eu Yan Sang Premier TCM Centre @ Camden

By Sasha Gonzales, Simply Her, May 2015 / Updated by Melodi Ghui, July 2019 

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