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Help I Am Allergic To Latex

Aug 17, 2007
If you are allergic to latex then you suffer from allergies Type 1 or contact allergy. Latex is made from a natural milky liquid found in topical rubber trees. The protein found in latex causes the immune system in some individuals to overreact and treat the protein as a harmful to your body. Whey your body responds to the invasion, your body releases histamine from the irritated area such as the skin, nasal and bronchial areas.

Reactions usually begin within a couple of minutes to several hours after exposure to latex. Mild symptoms involve skin redness, hives, or itching. In more sever cases the respiratory system is involved. Wheezing, coughing or difficulty in breathing may be noted. If any of the breathing symptoms occur or if the other symptoms are pronounced then prompt emergency treatment is needed.

Latex is used in making condoms, diapers, rubber bands, rubber toys, sanitary pads, adhesive tape, balloons, urinary catheters, and exam gloves. Individuals that are allergic to latex can also be allergic to banana, avocado, kiwi fruit, chestnut, and tomato.

Sensitivity can develop over time and may not appear when you are expose to the irritant the first several times. A good example of this is the growing number of healthcare workers that are becoming allergic to latex after regular and prolonged exposure to latex examination gloves. The amount of exposure needed to cause someone to become allergic to latex is unknown. Exposure at very low levels can start and allergic reaction to some hypersensitive individuals.

Since the outbreak of AIDS a growing number of other industries are also showing an increased number of individuals developing an allergy to latex do the increased use of latex gloves. Such workers include law enforcement personnel, funeral-home workers, fire fighters, painters, gardeners, food handlers, and housekeeping personnel.

Some hospital examination latex gloves are coated with cornstarch powder. The latex proteins stick to the cornstarch and become airborne when the gloves are removed. Hospitals air contains many latex particles due to the frequent removal of the latex gloves. Other causes for healthcare workers allergic reactions are frequent washing of the hands, incomplete drying, hand sanitizers and zinc oxide.

Using latex gloves that are powder-free will reduce the number of airborne proteins. There are several type of synthetic rubber also referred to as latex, but these do not release the proteins that cause the allergic reaction.

Always consult your doctor before using this information.

This Article is nutritional in nature and is not to be construed as medical advice.
About the Author
David Cowley has created over 50 articles about the relationship between diseases and vitamins. For other articles on Allergies click on Articles on Allergies and for other articles click onOther Articles
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