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Elgin residents get to know food allergy symptoms

Food Allergy Symptoms Elgin
Visit Food Allergies Page to learn more | Contact Us

Even though food allergies are commonly confused with food intolerance, allergies to food are relatively common. The Centers for Disease Control estimate 4 to 6 percent of kids and 4 percent of adults have this immune system reaction to food triggers.

Symptoms can vary widely from person to person. Even the same person can have a mild allergic reaction and then have a more severe reaction later.

In addition, your food allergy symptoms may vary from the symptoms experienced by a friend or family member who is allergic to other substances such as pet dander, mold, pollen, and dust.

If your trigger is something you breathe in chances are your eyes, nose, and lungs will be affected. If food is your problem, your symptoms will typically affect the mouth and gastrointestinal tract.

Some of the most frequently cited food allergy symptoms include:

  • A burning, tingling, or itchy mouth
  • Skin inflammation, rashes
  • Wheezing
  • Congestion
  • Nausea, abdominal pain
  • Vomiting, diarrhea

Children may describe some of these symptoms as “my mouth feels funny,” or they may mention that it feels like something fuzzy is on their tongue or stuck in their throat.

Food allergies are the No. 1 cause of a potentially deadly condition known as anaphylaxis.

Think of how any allergic reaction works. If you have an allergy, your immune system mistakes a specific substance or food as harmful. The system’s way of protecting you is to deploy abnormally large numbers of antibodies to identify and neutralize these perceived dangerous substances. During this process, chemicals such as histamine are released. These chemicals are responsible for a range of symptoms.

With anaphylaxis, the body’s over-reaction to a specific trigger food sends the body into shock. Often this reaction comes on suddenly. It may start with the typical signs such as a rash or a runny nose and then progress to serious symptoms including:

  • Airway constriction
  • Tongue, throat swelling
  • Weak, rapid pulse
  • Fainting
  • Lightheadedness
  • Pale complexion

The vast majority of these reactions can be blamed on a handful of foods: milk, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, wheat, soy, fish, and shellfish.

Even very small amounts of the food can cause a reaction. Problems frequently arise when an allergic person consumes a food they thought was safe due to mislabeling or cross-contamination when meals are prepared.

Since there are so many potentially adverse food allergy symptoms and these effects can evolve with time, it’s important to be properly diagnosed. Drs. Noga Askenazi and Eugenia Hahn can then develop a treatment plan so you can start enjoying foods again without the fear of consequences.

 

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Dr. Noga Askenazi, Advanced Allergy & Asthma Associates

Advanced Allergy & Asthma Associates

Dr. Noga Askenazi | Dr. Eugenia Hahn | Meredith Cirrincione

Dr. Noga Askenazi is a nationally recognized asthma and allergy specialist who is board certified in pediatric and adult allergy. Her areas of special interest are innovative treatment of rashes, sinusitis, food allergies, asthma and immune disorders. She was past President of the ISAAI (Illinois Society of Allergy, Asthma, & Immunology), works on state and national committees for advancement of the allergy field and is a consultant for Advocate, AMITA, Northwestern amongst other health care systems. Her joy is helping patients reach their goals after together determining best treatments. Her staff and patients are a chosen family, and she invests in their happiness. She enjoys gardening, biking and cooking to good music.


Dr. Eugenia Hahn is a highly recognized board certified allergist and immunologist who treats patients of all ages. Her areas of special interest are food allergy, eczema, and asthma. She is president of the Illinois Society of Allergy & Asthma, a National Committee leader of the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology, a member of the American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology working on new treatment options for patients. She is a consultant for Advocate, Northwestern, AMITA, Northwest Community healthcare systems amongst many others. Her patients mean everything to her as she takes pride in finding the why behind the problem. She enjoys reading and spending time with her family.


Meredith Cirrincione is a board certified Physician Assistant and specializes in treating allergies, with a focus on asthma, rashes, environmental allergies, chemical and food allergies. She holds a Masters in Physician Assistant Studies from The Chicago Medical School - Rosalind Franklin University of Health Sciences. She is a Fellow member of the American Academy of Physician Assistants, the Illinois Academy of Physician Assistants, and the Association of PAs in Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. She likes to approach things holistically. She is a strong patient advocate and adored by her patients. She enjoys singing, reading, cooking, and the great outdoors.