Allergies are something that many people experience. To better understand allergies, it helps to know the meaning of the word. An allergy is a reaction by the immune system, against a substance that is normally harmless to most people. The substance that triggers the reaction is called an allergen. Allergens can be pollen, mold, food, or a host of other things. Without becoming to technical, the person who is affected by allergens will have a chemical response. This may appear in a wide variety of forms.
The symptoms of allergies are many. Some people may get a rash, or skin irritation. Others may develop trouble breathing. Runny nose and throat irritations could all be signs of allergies. It can trigger asthma, especially in young children. Allergic reactions can cause tons of problems, all to varying degrees of severity. Anaphylaxis is widely regarded as the most severe affect . This may cause a dramatic loss in blood pressure, and a rapid heartbeat. This affliction is usually caused by an allergic reaction to a specific food.
Allergens can be airborne, such as pollen, mold, or anything else one may breathe in. You can also digest allergens. Many people are allergic to things like milk, peanuts, or seafood. Even others are allergic to things that they come in touch with. My daughter breaks out with hives every time she touches white caterpillars. Knowing what one is allergic to is key in the fight against allergies.
There are many different tests that can be done to find what allergens ttrigger your attacks. The most common are skin tests. There are three common types of skin tests. The first skin test is the scratch test. The doctor will clean an area of your body. It will be marked with spots, where drops of extract will be put. After a few minutes, they will check to see if any reactions occured. By process of elimination, allergens that trigger reactions will be found. Another skin test is called an intra dermal test. This requires the allergen extract to be injected under the skin. It really is a simple, and painless procedure. The last type of skin test is a patch test. The allergen is placed on a patch, then put on your body. The doc will then have you come back in a couple days, to see if there was a delayed reaction. Blood tests may also be used in finding allergens. The advantage of the blood test is that it will find allergens without triggering a reaction. The minus side to this test is the price, and the time involved waiting for results. I would always advise people to take a skin test, unless the reaction to allergens is extreme.
Allergy medicine is a big market. Nothing cures allergies, but some products work better than others. Many allergy attacks release histamine's. This is why we take antihistamines. The best advise on allergy products will come from your physician. They will know to what extent the allergy affects you, and will suggest proper treatment. If allergies are mild, over the counter remedies may be suggested. Over medicating is sometimes the worst thing you can do. As usual, some foods will be said to help ease symptoms of allergies. Home remedies can be found everywhere. With no cure for allergies, common sense should always be consulted. Stay away from all foods that you are allergic to. When eating at a restaurant, always consult the wait staff to see what oils they use while preparing the food. Tell them of your allergy, and the staff will usually answer your questions, or direct you to who can. If the allergens that affect you are airborne, remember many will be seasonal. No need to take medicine to control hay fever when it's snowing. Common sense is usually the best answer.