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More information about helping people who have had asevere allergic reaction

Here are some questions people often ask. If you have a question that isn’t answered here, please feel free to email us at firstaid@redcross.org.uk or use this form.

Q

What kind of food can cause allergic reactions?

Answer
Answer

The most common foods that can cause allergic reactions are things like nuts, shellfish, dairy products and eggs. Other things such as latex, bee and wasp stings and certain medications can also cause allergic reactions.

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Q

How will I know if it is a severe allergic reaction?

Answer
Answer

Someone may have mild allergies, resulting in itchy skin and eyes. However, a severe allergic reaction can cause symptoms such as swelling of their tongue or neck and difficulty breathing.

If you observe these symptoms, call 999.

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Q

What is anaphylactic shock?

Answer
Answer

Anaphylactic shock is a severe allergic reaction which makes it difficult for a person to breathe. Once a person is identified as being at risk of anaphylactic shock, the doctor may give them an auto-injector, which helps to ease the symptoms in an emergency.

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Q

Can I give them an auto-injection?

Answer
Answer

If the person has their own auto-injector, you can help them use it, or do it yourself following the guidance on the injector.

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Q

What should I do if the person becomes unresponsive and stops breathing?

Answer

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