Latex allergy may not be as common as many other allergies we are familiar with but it can cause life-threatening consequences. Thus, if you ever find out you have a latex allergy, you should be extremely careful with the precaution and treatments. One of the best ways to prevent latex allergy is complete abstinence from anything that contains natural rubber latex or NRL. It’s to note here a lot of things from our everyday lives contain latex such as the buttons of TV remote or balloons and so on. So, if you are allergic to latex, you should never touch them directly.
There are two main kinds of latex allergies- Type 1 & Type 4.
In regards to Type 1, you mostly experience –
- Itching & swelling of skin
If the condition is serious, you will experience:
- problems in breathing
- swelling of throat
In regards to Type 4, you may experience rashes and skin itching much later after you come in contact with latex. It’s not exactly a life-threatening situation, unlike the Type 1. If you have Type 4 allergy, doctors will mostly suggest you steroid creams and anti-histamine medicines.
The post below offers some tips that will help you to manage latex allergy effectively.
Avoid direct touch with things that contain latex:
- Household goods– rubber balloons, rubber gloves, nappies, dummies, rubber toys, bottle teats, elastic waistbands, condoms, plasters, bandages, remote control buttons, mattresses, calculator buttons, car tyres, pillows, mattresses, shoe soles, rubber clothing and wellington boots.
- Sports equipment– hands grips of racquets, swimming goggles & caps, rubber mats, exercise bands, rubber balls and beach toys.
- Stationery items: paints, art supplies, sticky tape, adhesive, rubber bands and erasers.
- Clinical & dental equipment: syringes, gloves, catheters & tubing, cuffs for measuring blood pressure, adhesive tape, stethoscopes, tourniquets as well as dental dams.
Avoid certain foods to avoid latex allergy
Latex allergy may also trigger a food allergy. Thus, doctors advise staying away from certain foods if you are prone to latex allergy. These are tomato, raw potato, melons, kiwi, chestnut, celery, carrot, banana, avocado and apple.
Avoid areas with high latex concentration
There are some areas where the use of latex is higher than general. If you frequent these places, you will end up inhaling a large volume of latex which will worsen the situation further. For safety reasons, try to avoid these areas as much as possible.
You must inform your boss and colleagues about the fact that you are prone to latex allergy. This way, your employer will know that you can’t be assigned for tasks that contain latex. Similarly, your colleagues will also be able to keep you alerted in case you accidentally come in contact with anything which contains latex.
Medical tips to follow
- Count on a medical alarm bracelet
- Be particular about all the precautions and recommendations suggested by your doctor regarding the latex allergic reactions
- Make sure to inform your surgeon about your condition before undergoing any sort of surgery, vaccinations, injections and other medical procedures
Keep emergency kit
This point is especially important for people prone to Type 1 allergy. Your emergency kit must contain:
- 2 Adrenaline auto-injectors and you should also train yourself on their application
- Documented action plan prescribed by a doctor that could be used to manage an allergy emergency
- inhaler if the person has asthma
- non-latex gloves
Risks are higher for those with asthmatic conditions. So, if you have asthma and you also suffer from a latex allergy, you should be very careful to manage your latex allergy and keep asthma under control.