Pathophysiology: Wheat allergy, the most prevalent food allergy, is most common in young children, usually developing in the infancy and toddler years. Some infants and young children will appear to lose their wheat allergies between the ages of three and five, however some will merely be in remission until their 20s or 30s. Some children will continue to experience wheat allergies throughout their lives. While wheat allergies that develop in adolescence or adulthood are rare.
Symptoms: Many wheat allergy symptoms are similar to those reactions a person has to airborne allergens like pollen and dust. You may notice your infant or young child experiencing an itching and swelling of the mouth, throat, or skin when products containing wheat have been ingested. Itchy or watery eyes and congestion may also be present. Because of this, it may be easy to mistake a wheat allergy for regular airborne allergies.
Diagnosis: Some indications of an allergy to wheat are stomach cramps, diarrhea and other gastrointestinal symptoms — overlap with those produced by a sensitivity to gluten or by celiac disease, an autoimmune disorder, so it’s crucial to get an accurate diagnosis. An allergist can determine whether an allergy is present.
Treatment: Allergic reactions are generally treated one of two ways: with antihistamines or with epinephrine. For mild reactions, taking an antihistamine at the first sign of a reaction will reduce your symptoms and relieve pain or discomfort. For anaphylaxis, an epinephrine shot will need to be administered through an auto-injector or by a medical professional.