Thursday, 11 April 2013

Are Allergies In The Genes?

Both my parents suffer from either allergic rhinitis and or sinusitis, which is why I ended up inheriting their allergies. I'm not blaming them. As a parent myself, I know no parent in this world would wish for their child to have any allergies. Its a life-long suffering and it gets depressing when doctors tell you that allergies can't be cured, it can only be managed. Even in traditional chinese medicine (TCM), the physicians I have seen said the only way is to improve the immune system and minimize exposure to allergens. There is no permanent cure.

I believe my dad has either "outgrown" or his allergy is very much in control as I hardly see him having sneezing fits. I heard from my aunt that my dad used to run to the toilet at home every morning to blow his mucus-filled nose. He never had an allergy test done. My mum's allergy is also pretty much in control. And out of my 3 siblings, one has hives when she was young; another has mild allergic rhinitis, though she never got it tested as it was not as severe as mine; and another sibling is allergic to a specific type of shellfish which he only discovered recently upon eating it. Oh and did I mention that on top of allergic rhinitis, I also have drug allergy like my mum?

Probabilities of Inheriting an Allergy

Here's some statistics on the probability a child may inherit an allegy from their parents. These statistics are based on what doctors have told me. In general, if both parents suffer from allergies, their child is likely to have 70% chance of inheriting an allergy. If only 1 parent has allergy, then chances are 50%. And even if both parents are allergy-free, there is still a small chance of 10% that the child may get an allergy. Doctors have also said that a child may not inherit the same specific allergy as their parents. This is so true. Just look at my family history of allergies...