« »

Food Allergies: How to Recognize Anaphylactic Shock

young family shares a healthy lunch at the kitchen tableIf your food allergy is severe, it’s possible that consuming the allergen may cause your body to initiate an anaphylactic episode. Your body is trying to protect itself by creating histamine, but the overabundance of this natural chemical can be life-threatening! Here’s how you can recognize anaphylactic shock:

Bodily Responses Related to Anaphylactic Shock

Your body may produce an anaphylactic shock response within minutes or hours after consuming the allergen. It is especially important NOT to ignore any of the following signs, even if it occurs several hours after eating:

Drop in Blood Pressure – When your body releases histamine to ward off the invading allergen, your blood cells begin to widen. The widening of your blood cells can cause your blood pressure to drop suddenly. Low blood pressure is linked to fainting or weakness.

2+ Symptoms – Right before someone experiences anaphylactic shock, their body will likely produce symptoms forewarning what is about to happen. If you notice two or more of these symptoms, it’s likely you’re about to experience anaphylactic shock and you need to use your epinephrine injector:

  • Hives
  • Itchy skin
  • Swollen lips or tongue
  • Stomach cramps
  • Vomiting
  • Wheezing

Change in Skin or Breathing Patterns – Your skin may very well be the first to report the allergen in your body by producing hives. Hives often appear as pale, red and white bumps and will likely itch. If the allergen triggers a response in your lungs such as wheezing or trouble breathing, your life can be in danger.

Food Allergies & Anaphylactic Shock: Steps to Take to Ensure Safety

If you experience any of the above bodily responses after consuming a food you’re allergic to, don’t delay calling for medical help and using your epinephrine injector. Your epinephrine injector can buy you precious minutes while waiting for help to arrive. If you are unsure what food allergies you have or need to know more about managing them, please call our team today: 478-787-4728.