Poinsettia plants don't make you as sick upon ingestion as the myth claims, but some who have an allergic reaction to latex get sick just being around poinsettia plants. Do you experience this allergic reaction to poinsettia plants (or know somebody who does)? Symptoms include itchy throat and trouble breathing.
It's bad enough to learn you suffer from an allergic reaction to poinsettia plants upon receiving one as a gift. It's worse to discover that you have this health problem through exposure to displays of poinsettia plants at work or in apartment hallways -- where you may not have control over the matter.Report Allergic Reactions
Poinsettia Plants -- Shortness of Breath
- Yes, poinsettia plants contain a latex protein. People who have a latex allergy can get very sick even being in the room with them. I have a latex allergy and found this out the hard way. A member of the family brought a poinsettia plant into the house. I noticed that my throat started to itch and then, by the next day, I was really having trouble breathing. It just so happened that, that night, on our local news they were warning about it. We took the poinsettia plant outside and I started to get better. If you notice, well, around my hometown anyway, public places no longer put them on display. It's really too bad because they are really beautiful and so much a part of our holidays.
- —Guest Rebecca
Poinsettia Plants and Latex Allergy
- I am very glad to see that you have posted the info that Rebecca provided to you about natural rubber latex allergy. I don’t believe I know Rebecca, but I too have natural rubber latex allergy. This is a disabling & life threatening allergy. The poinsettia is only one of 40,000 items in everyday life that contains one or more of the 53 identified latex proteins at this time. Many gardening tools and gloves have rubber. Many gardening shoes do as well. Insecticides contain the chemicals used in latex glove production which make them lethal to any of us with natural rubber latex allergy. There are many plants whose DNA makeup is so close to latex that we have severe & life threatening reactions. I appreciate all that I have learned through About, & I’m thankful to give this comment.
- —Guest connie
Even ACLU Offers No Help to Sufferer!
- I never knew that others were allergic. Although I have never had any trouble with latex (as far as I know), poinsettia plants (or poison-ettas as my son used to call them) make me dangerously ill. I have to carry an epipen because if I walk into a building with one anywhere in it, I will have an anaphylactic reaction. Unfortunately, if I run into one and have to take my epipen, then I am supposed to go to the hospital which is full of them, making it the WORST place I can go. Further, when I tried to contact my congressman about it and its relation to the ADA and my employment, he snubbed me saying it was so rare, that it wasn’t a big enough problem for him to make an issue. The ACLU turned me down too and we know how litigious they are. What kind of help is there?
- —Guest Donna
Poinsettia Sickness: It's Real
- This is insane. I've got migraines, severe runny nose, itchy and watery eyes, a bloody nose, light-headedness. At first I thought, What the heck? My allergies have always been crazy . I have always had dust and pollen allergies. Nothing new. Except it's snowy and my allergies should be on the Fritz. So I'm thinking something is wrong. I just came up from my basement, went over to my kitchen sink, took one look at that poinsettia and thought, I wonder if there is such a thing as being allergic to poinsettias? And boom, I find this website talking about it. I'm letting my husband know in a few minutes when he gets home: the poinsettia plant has to go . My chest is heavy; it could be the death of me.
- —Guest courtney
Allergy to Poinsettias
- I am very sensitive to poinsettias as well. My eyes, nose, throat burn, feel very dry, I start to cough, wheeze. I try to avoid all contact with them. No grocery or mall shopping, can't go to church, Christmas concerts, visiting etc. The first contact of the year is minimal, but it escalates with every exposure. By the third one in a week, my sinuses, throat and lungs are fully involved, sore and full of mucous. I have coughing and wheezing spells. I sympathize with others who have the same thing. Other people are rude and question how you can be allergic to something that doesn't have a scent. They can make it difficult for you.
Sore Throat and Chest Hurts
- Glad I Googled! I am definitely allergic to poinsettias. I just start to feel awful around the plants. Very itchy burning throat and super tight chest. Also makes me feel itchy on face and neck. Removing from my office now.
- —Guest Helen
The Silent Sulfur Night
- I discovered in my Google investigation that poinsettias have a sulfur deficiency. They require a higher sulfur content in the fertilizer. Due to my extremely bad sulfur allergy, being even near them sets my skin to itching. I can be several hundred feet away and still get hives. My hives aren't just hives. They can be huge welts if I touch them. I have asthma attacks, swelling of the face, fever, swelling of the throat, etc.
- —Guest jennifer
Thanks for This Info
- 3 days ago I purchased a poinsettia plant and that evening I did not feel right. I felt very bloated and never took much notice. The next day my mom bought me a mini one for my room. That night I woke up pouring with sweat. When I woke up I was freezing, so lightheaded and dizzy that I thought I was going to be sick. I got up and went off to work and I was fine. When I came home I felt dizzy and very sleepy so went to bed early hoping that would ease it. I wondered if I was lacking fluids so made sure I was drinking. I woke up the next morning (today) with same symptoms and was shocked as to why. Then I got a glimpse of my pretty poinsettia on the TV stand and decided to Google and found this site. So both plants have been returned and I hope my symptoms will now leave. I know I do have allergies to plants, as this summer I decided I grow my own plants and I got so ill I lost a stone in weight and was on meds. So no more plants ever. I hope this dizziness will soon go.
- —Guest kelly
- I "pinched" dozens of plants that my husband is growing and got the Poinsettia Milk on my hands. My index finger got very sore which I did not understand because the plant was easy to pinch (not tough). Since then (several days ago) my finger has been swollen and throbbing. Very uncomfortable. I got some Benadryl cream but it does not seem to help. Does anyone have any suggestions?
- —Guest Bella
Christmas killer - Poinsettias
- YES! I definitely have reactions to poinsettias. I refer to them as the unknown Christmas Killer (jokingly, but with tongue in cheek). AND...inevitably my office will get several plants to give away at Christmas events in addition to them being in every store that you see! My eyes water/itch, I get a scratchy throat, and usually end up with a sinus infection just after Christmas that I attribute to the exposure to the plant. I take Singulair daily anyway, and will take an over the counter medication in addition to that (usually Claritin) to help with the symptoms. I also have to use eye drops (pataday) to help with the eye issues caused by them.
- —Guest Guest KKlioness
More Reasons Poinsettias Can Sicken You
- With poinsettia allergies, it is especially tough to pinpoint the culprit. Poinsettias grown closely together in greenhouses can be a breeding ground for fungus and/or mold and their spores on both the plant leaves and in the soil. Being allergic to one mold doesn't mean being allergic to all molds. Secondly, all flowering plants produce pollen which can cause problems for some. Then there is the sap that has a chemical in it found in latex -- another source of a possible allergen for some people. It's a tough plant to avoid during the holiday season!
Allergy to Poinsettia - Thank You!
- I have been short of breath, my lungs itch, and now my throat and chest feel tight. I thought I had a cross-contamination of a food allergy, but this felt completely different from my normal reactions. I was standing at my sink doing dishes and noticed the poinsettia that my dad decided to buy me for Christmas. The petals are falling and it's dropping pollen, so I thought maybe this is my issue. You all have describe my symptoms! Thank you for sharing. I'm going to throw it out now!
- —Guest Shannan
I Had No Idea
- I had poinsettias in the house for Christmas and couldn't figure out why I was feeling dizzy and nauseous with migraines. I thought I was just stressed from Christmas, but realized I had only felt sick since bringing poinsettias into the house. I threw them in the garbage and the next day I felt way better -- no more migraines or dizziness! I didn't think just being near something could cause such severe symptoms!
- —Guest Brandy
Poinsettias and Sleeping Problems?
- After reading several items on poinsettia plants I now think they might cause my sleeping problems each December and January. Every Christmastime my husband, daughters and I have several sleeping problems. Till now we never connected them to poinsettia plants. Does anybody know if these plants can be connected to sleeping problems?
- —Guest joanna1961
Allergic to Poinsettias
- I have 6 poinsettias around for the holidays and my allergies are bad. Runny nose and cold symptoms but clear drainage.
- —Guest Sandra