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PostPosted: Wed Apr 29, 2009 2:22 pm 

Joined: Mon Apr 27, 2009 10:30 pm
Posts: 1
I haven't had a reaction in 3 or 4 years, which was to fresh snow peas. but every time i even see things that i've reacted to in the past, almonds, peanuts, peaches pears apples, etc, (i'm allergic to birch and react to almost everything on the list of oral allergy syndrome things) i still fear anaphylaxis (i've never had an anaphylactic reaction to anything in my life. only mild tingling, itching, discomfort, for maybe 20 or 30 minutes at most.) When i explained my OAS reactions to my GP, he told me it "could get worse."

I'm absolutely sick of not being able to eat without fear of something i'm allergic to being in it. can anyone give me some advice on how to deal with this?

example : i was cleaning up my mom's breakfast this morning, and i noticed she had peanut butter toast. normally i can't even touch the same knife to put it in the dishwasher without panicking. today i took a big step and picked up the knife, put it in the dishwasher, and then wiped the counter where she accidentally smeared some peanut butter. it's causing me severe anxiety, even after having washed my hands, and ate a completely different lunch, out of clean dishes, and away from the peanut butter.

can anyone advise me on how to relax or to reassure me that OAS isn't as bad as i make it out to be? my doctor told me it could get worse, which plays on my mind, far too much if you ask me. from what i understand, anaphylaxis in oral allergy syndrome is rare, and also i don't think i can even react to peanut butter since it's roasted/processed. i'm not keen to try eating it though. i feel like i'm allergic to EVERYTHING and it's affecting my quality of life. i'm sick of this!!! i suppose at least it's not something i was born with, and has never been too severe, so i can be grateful for that.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 29, 2009 10:33 pm 

Joined: Sun May 25, 2008 4:27 pm
Posts: 300
Location: Montreal
First of all, take a deep breath...everyone here will tell you they probably have had some sort of anxiety or nervousness at one time or another because of their allergies (or their children's). It's a pretty normal reaction to have when food-something we need to survive- can make us sick, whether it's to a small or big degree.

Ok, now OAS is extremely uncomfortable sometimes but most people don't develop anaphylaxis to the things they experience OAS to. While doctors will tell us it's possible, the reality is, they say this because any individual can develop an allergy to anything at any time in their life. But this can make someone worry that they WILL develop allergies to something.

If you have OAS to certain things and the reaction is too uncomfortable, just don't eat it. When I was a kid, I couldn't eat raw melon at all...really itchy mouth and lips. Around Christmas time, when we would have antipasto dishes with melon, prociutto, cheese, etc. I would get mine without melon and I wouldn't eat the things that had melon juice on it in case it had already been put on my plate. Would it have sent me into shock? No. Did it give me an uncomfortable reaction? Yes.

I touch things that give me OAS and nothing at all happens. The only thing you need to do is, as a rule of thumb, just wash your hands before you eat. But I have touched certain triggers like raw apple before and then eaten something else and nothing has happened but if it makes you feel more at ease, just wash your hands.

Have you gone to see an allergist lately? Perhaps it would put your mind at ease if you got tested for these foods and to discuss OAS with an allergist. As long as the foods don't come up as high numbers, you don't need to worry about them causing a severe reaction (of course, always discuss results with the allergist).

I know it's hard though. When my brother had an anaphylactic reaction I was the one who became overly anxious and paranoid about everything, trying to protect him from ever going through the same thing again. I washed things three times, washed my hands until they were dried out and was so nervous for him. It's scary, it's food after all and we're not supposed to have to worry about food.

But with a bit of time, you will get into your own routine. I really suggest you go to the allergist to pan things out and see if those foods are just triggers of OAS and then you'll know that you don't have to worry about having a terrible reaction to everything...maybe just an itchy mouth but nothing serious.

You'll be ok, don't worry! :D

PostPosted: Mon May 11, 2009 11:33 am 

Joined: Mon May 11, 2009 10:37 am
Posts: 2
My best frind's son has been successfully living with severe allergies for 18 years. However, he has had three anaphalxis episodes in the past 9 months. He is now debilitated with panic attacks which are compounding as with the chest tightening etc. he thinks he is having an allergic reaction. He had actually stopped eating after his last attack (wouldn't even eat "safe" food at home) and is just working his way back slowly to eating food at school (he has been attending a private school which is VERY sensitive to his special dietary needs.
He is allergic to ALL dairy (no milk egges butter, etc), seafood and soy.

My friend has tried to get him into behavioral therapy, but so far he has not connected with the right person/program. They are trying to avoid medication but his anxiety levels are mounting.

Also, I think this is coming to a head now because he is leaving for college in the Fall. Columbia is bending over backwards to accomodate him (they actually have an allergy program and he will have a personal chef to help him plan meals). Up until now he has dealt with his allergies admirably. I think on some level he knows he needs to deal with this and is trying to do so while he is still in a SAFE environment.

I myself have dealt with severe PTSD, living in NYC during September 11, so I really feel his pain in trying to cope with these overwhelming feelings of anxiety and loss of control.

Does anyone have any thoughts/suggestions/advice on how to deal with this?


 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon May 11, 2009 1:47 pm 
Site Admin

Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 11:17 pm
Posts: 6616
Location: Ottawa

This website has a lot of good information. Let him know that it is normal to feel anxious after such events but if this anxiety is preventing him from living his life, there are treatments available to him. Encourage him to seek themout and then, all youcan do is sit back and wait. The person has to seek treatment for themselves.

Make sure he has the information for assistance at Columbia. Make sure your son understands that it is not his job to fix his friend.

Daughter: asthma, allergies to egg, milk, peanuts, tree nuts, most legumes (not soy and green beans) & penicillin. Developing hayfever type allergies.
Husband: no allergies
Me: Oral Allergy Syndrome, Allergic to Birch trees

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