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How do I know if my 19 month old has a peanut allergy

Over the weekend, my 8 year old daughter was eating peanuts from a restaurant and she gave a few to my 19 month old daughter which I didn't have a problem with because she can eat candy with peanut butter in it and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. My 19 month old ate a few peanuts that her sister shelled for her and I didn't notice anything out of the ordinary. About 20 minutes pass and my 19 month old walks over with whole peanuts unshelled in her mouth so I took them away from her. She kept trying to eat them in the shell. A few minutes after I took them away so she wouldn't choke on pieces of the shell my mother and I noticed what looked like a hive/rash on her face right beside her mouth and her finger tips and palms of her hands were red and irritated looking. We got rid of all the peanuts and shells and stopped letting her eat them because she doesn't eat peanuts too often and I was worried. My 8 year old daughter had a similar issue with pickles when she was about her age and it wasn't the pickles, but come to find out the vinegar in the pickles that she was having a contact reaction to. This rash and redness looked VERY similar. Is it possible to have a reaction to the shells but not the actual peanut or is it possible that it took 30+ mins for us to notice a reaction? I'm so scared to give them to her again. I have a cousin who is deathly allergic to peanuts and it makes me a little nervous. Any ideas/suggestions?

By juanita1173 on Tue, 07-08-14, 11:33

You are wise to proceed with caution! I agree on avoiding peanuts (and tree nuts due to icross-contamination) until you can have her tested by an allergist. I would even ask your primary care to prescribe an epi-pen to carry with you in the meantime.

At your daughter's age my dd was allergic but I didn't realize it. I only realized she was having reaction in retrospect as her primary symptom was vomiting. Her first reaction happened two hours after she ate peanuts (age 2 or so). The next one about an hour. And the one after that happened about five minutes (age 3).

I hope your dd is not allergic, but if she is know that you have a lot of support. This website is great as well as "No Nuts Moms Group" on Facebook-- I've learned soooo much as to how to keep my daughter safe. The moms in that group are wonderful and sometimes know more than my allergist, I think! :)


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By thekilij on Sun, 07-06-14, 16:29

Hi edetmer! I'm sorry to hear about the peanut scare at the restaurant. I would suggest bringing your child to her pediatrician so he/she can do a blood panel and refer you to an allergy specialist. Best of luck to you!

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By mb1554 on Sun, 07-06-14, 16:07

I agree with the recommendation to see an allergist for testing and to avoid all peanuts and peanut products until allergy testing is complete. While caring for my goddaughter's 2 y/o, with a diagnosed egg allergy, I gave her cut up apples with peanut butter. She had eaten peanut butter candy/cookies in the past without a problem. She told me she didn't want the peanut butter so began to eat the apples only leaving the peanut butter behind. She may have gotten a small amount on her hands and mouth. Within 30-40 minutes, she developed a red rash around her mouth which continued to spread, eventually causing her eyes to swell, even after I administered Benadryl. There was no respiratory symptoms. Her mother had her tested and she does have a moderate allergy to peanuts and tree nuts. The allergist explained that the amount of peanut butter in candy is very small and any previous ingestion may have just sensitized her.

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By Nutsnonuts on Sun, 07-06-14, 16:01

2nd reaction is stronger than 1st one. My son got 1st reaction when he was 11 month old. I gave him about tooth pick size to toast. 18 years ago, peanuts allergy was not speak strongly. He had tomato cheek after 5-10 min. Later. I took ER and waited 1 1/2 hour. Doctor said " unknown " hive. I did not know peanuts was cause so I gave again a week later and itchy hive all over face this time. Pediatrician said, no more peanuts never! She say he is too young to test so wait till he is almost 2. Sure enough son is allergic to peanuts and tree nuts. I would recommend not give again till tested with doctor. Every time reaction get stronger like bee allergy.

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By PeanutAllergy.com on Thu, 07-03-14, 18:26

Question of the Week: Answered!

Every week, PeanutAllergy.com is answering one of the questions posted in our community.

Our Answer:

Thank you for sharing your experience with our community. We’re glad your 19-month-old did not suffer a more serious reaction and that you’re proceeding cautiously.

It is possible for individuals with peanut allergy to experience varying reactions to different types of peanut products. We have an article about how food allergies may apply to just part of the food for different individuals, which you can read here. This phenomenon may possibly be the explanation as to why your child has not reacted to other peanut products but had a scare with the shells.

However, it is important that you see an allergist and have some tests done in a controlled environment to learn for sure whether your daughter has a peanut allergy. It’s possible that there may have been an outside, unrelated factor that caused the reaction. You won’t know for sure until you see a physician and have the necessary tests done.

Since you’ll be avoiding peanut shells for the time being, check out this thread about different experiences with peanut shells.

Additionally, this video provides tips for parenting children with food allergies.

We asked our Facebook fans for their input, and you can read their responses here.

Best of luck and please let us know what you find out.

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By carolyn larocca on Wed, 07-02-14, 03:00

Just an FYI I have read that peanuts pose a serious choking risk for children under 9 years old, for the reason being that they tend to put handfuls of them in their month at one time. If I were you I would be careful of that in addition to the allergic reaction .

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