Allergy to hamsters: symptoms, treatment, prevention
A hamster is one of the popular kinds of pets. This demand is explained by the unpretentiousness of the rodent. Most often these animals are found in families with children, they will easily raise the mood of both the child and an adult. Whether there is an allergy on hamsters? This question is relevant if the rodent is going to acquire a family with a child. Sellers often try to convince the buyer that hamsters are absolutely harmless and do not cause allergies.
Many argue that the cause of an allergy is the animal's fur. Some say that the severe form of the allergy is caused by the Dzhungar small hamster. In fact, the main cause is the saliva and dandruff of the animal. Sometimes the allergy develops after a rodent bite. Allergens are present in the subcutaneous fat, while all hamsters can be dangerous, and it does not matter how magnificent their hair is.
Currently, the allergy to hamsters is not the most common. If a person has it, the quality of life deteriorates noticeably. It is important to establish in time the exact causes of the disease, and only then to choose methods of therapy.
Symptoms of allergy
The first signs of the disease can be divided into several groups. As a rule, allergy to rodents manifests itself within several hours, and in some cases 2-3 days in the form of skin symptoms, immunological reactions from the respiratory system, anaphylaxis, enteropathy.
The skin type of allergic reactions includes rash and hives. The second of these features is expressed in the form of itchy redness on the skin. The formation of pale pink blisters occurs if the rash is formed on the mucous membranes. In acute form, the symptom lasts up to two weeks.
Systemic allergy( Quincke's edema) is very dangerous and can lead to serious consequences. There is an immunological reaction very quickly. Because of the accumulation of fluid, swollen tissues of the lips, cheeks, eyelids.
The catarrhal group of symptoms include bronchitis, rhinitis, conjunctivitis. In the course of development, inflammation of the mucosa occurs. The acute form of rhinitis is known as a runny nose. Conjunctivitis is an irritation of the outer shell of the eyes, as a result of which photophobia, lacrimation and itching occur. With allergic bronchitis there are signs such as swelling, coughing and pain in the chest.
Allergy to hamsters is very often accompanied by sneezing and shortness of breath. One of the reasons for sneezing - the inhalation of particles of the hamster epidermis, arises in connection with the cleansing of the respiratory tract from irritants. The first symptoms of shortness of breath are a breathing disorder( frequency and depth) with a sense of lack of oxygen and heaviness in the chest.
Enteropathy is a violation of the formation of enzymes that participate in digestive processes, there is abdominal pain, as well as indigestion. With the progression of the inflammatory process, the development of chronic diseases is possible.
What else can provoke a small hamster?
Anaphylaxis is the most dangerous immunological response, as out of ten cases - two result in a fatal outcome. It develops rapidly, there is a violation of blood circulation, a decrease in the shock volume of the heart and a decrease in blood pressure.
The first symptoms in a child are usually observed runny nose, sneezing, dry cough, hoarse voice, red eyes. Children often complain that they have itchy eyes, they do not want to eat, the condition is usually weakened. It is very important if you suspect allergies in the child immediately exclude his contact with the rodent, and seek medical help from a doctor.
Parents should refuse to buy a rodent if:
- the child has a predisposition to allergy;
- he often suffers from colds;
- allergies occurred earlier in other animals.
Symptoms of other diseases are very similar in appearance to allergy to hamsters. For example, rhinitis, which occurs as a result of the presence of rodents at home, is sometimes mistakenly compared to a common cold. To avoid such situations, it is recommended to undergo diagnostics in special treatment centers.
There are several diagnostic methods:
- Skin tests. A small amount of allergen is applied to the hands or back. If the patient has this kind of allergic reactions like itching or redness within 15-25 minutes, the result is positive. This method has a low price, it is easy to carry out, but there is a drawback, which is that the results are not perfectly accurate, they have inaccuracies.
- Blood test. Skin tests do not always give an absolutely accurate result, therefore it is recommended to perform an additional blood test. For this method, there are practically no contraindications for its use.
- Provocative tests. There are situations when neither a blood test nor skin tests can give a clear result, in such cases resort to provocative tests. In this method, the allergen is injected nasally, directly into the bronchi and sublingually. Provocations are carried out under strict medical supervision, since the stimulus can be quite pronounced. Still how to define an allergy to a hamster?
- Elimination tests. This method is useful in cases where the patient does not have the opportunity to come to a medical institution. Elimination is the exclusion of the alleged causative agent of the immunological reaction, therefore it is not recommended to clean it independently in the cage, to take the animal in hand. If the pathogen is established correctly, but after a while the symptoms will disappear.
To eliminate the immunological response to saliva and dandruff hamster, use elimination and antihistamine therapy, and as an additional method to combat allergy to hamsters, methods of alternative treatment are considered.
Elimination therapy - failure to contact with the allergen. Exclusion of the pathogen increases the quality of life of the patient. In order to protect yourself from the protein secreted by the rodent's body, it is necessary to entrust another member of the family with caring for the animal, not to contact the hamster, and regularly change the filler. Allergy to hamsters in children can be very dangerous.
Three generations of drugs
With antihistamine therapy, drugs block the histamine receptors. There are three generations of drugs.
- The first generation includes "Diphenhydramine", "Clemastin", "Hifenadine".They are used to stop the edema of Quincke and anaphylaxis. The main drawback of drugs - the oppression of the central nervous system, so these drugs are contraindicated in children and pregnant women.
- The second generation includes "Astemizol", "Loratadin", "Terfenadin".Drugs do not disrupt the operation of the central nervous system and are prescribed for prolonged use, but toxic effects on the liver and damage to the digestive tract are possible.
- The third generation - the most modern medicines. These include: "Xizal", "Telfast", "Erius".They are considered safe, but still have side effects in the form of insomnia, nausea, headache. They are usually prescribed to relieve itching and swelling. A pediatric allergist will help you choose a drug for your child.
In case of severe allergy, hormonal preparations are prescribed: "Prednisolone", "Cetirizine", "Hydrocortisone" and others. Such drugs quickly and effectively remove symptoms.
To achieve effective removal of toxins from the body, it is recommended to take enterosorbents( "Polysorb", "Lignin").
For the strengthening of the immune system, the administration of immunomodulators is advised, for example, "Timolina", "Likopida", "Imunofana", "Derinata".All these drugs can be administered in any form, for example, drops in the nose, eyes.
Alternative methods are folk remedies. It is very important to be aware of the specifics of these methods. Some types of grasses may not only be useless, but also exacerbate the situation, the effectiveness of alternative methods has not been scientifically proven.
With the permission of a pediatric allergist, the use of folk treatment is permissible. So, to eliminate the symptoms of the respiratory system, use olive oil, chamomile, peppermint.
The best prevention of allergies is the strengthening of immunity. You need to monitor your health and nutrition. Do not allow the occurrence of allergies by 100% can only be if you do not have a hamster in the house. People predisposed to allergies should refuse to purchase an animal. If this does happen, contact with the pet should be minimized, and the premises should be ventilated regularly. To release a hamster stands on the floor in a room where there is no carpet. Do not let the animal bite your hands or face. After contact, you should carefully wash your skin with soap.
Is there a allergy to hamsters? The answer is unequivocal - yes, it happens.