If you have been diagnosed with celiac disease, a biological relative has a higher risk of getting it as well. Celiac disease happens to be genetic. Many people don’t discuss celiac awareness and how one person in a family can be an eye opener for the remaining family members. One big question is if family members should get tested for celiac disease if someone else in the family has been diagnosed with it. Knowing that celiac disease is genetic, the simple answer to that question is yes. Family members should be made aware and undergo testing as well.
Celiac Awareness for Family Members
Family members should know that you can have celiac disease without having any symptoms of it… so if you’re thinking you didn’t have issues like your family member did and that you don’t have it, you could be very wrong. All people are different in every way; this is no different for having celiac disease. Symptoms that show up in one person may not show up in others. Also, there are various symptoms for celiac disease… what one person may experience a family member may not experience, but they may very well have a completely different symptom that lets doctors know you have celiac disease. Some of the symptoms of celiac disease include: constipation, diarrhea, joint pain, migraine headaches, skin disorders and many others.
Read more: Common Celiac Disease Symptoms
If there is one person in a family that has celiac disease there is a 1 in 22 chance that someone of the immediate family has celiac disease as well. Those relatives that are what most consider second-degree relatives have a 1 in 39 chance of being someone with celiac disease.
Read more: Testing for Celiac Disease – What to Know
Tips for encouraging to your family member to get tested:
- Initiate the conversation
- Keep the conversation personal based on your relationship with the family member
- Keep them engaged in the topic
- Talk about symptoms and the seriousness of the disease
- Decide on an action plan
- Be as supportive as possible through the process
Celiac awareness is important… you want to know if you’re someone that has celiac disease. It is surely a possibility if you have a family member that has it. If your family member has it, you should go to a doctor and get a celiac blood test. This is a panel of tests that is taken by a doctor, and the test consists of 5 tests total, but you don’t have to undergo all 5 tests to see if you have celiac disease. Celiac awareness is very important, and should be done more than once if you have a family member with the disease. You don’t want to be sorry for not having the test done, family members are more susceptible to it than others.