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Understanding Allergies: Know the Causes, Types, Symptoms and Treatment

Understanding Allergies:  Know the Causes, Types, Symptoms and Treatment

 

Every year millions of people get affected by allergies making it one of the most prevalent health issues worldwide. The body's response to external chemicals that are often innocuous causes allergies. All the different symptoms of various allergies that a person undergoes can be quite mild to life-threatening. Some of the many viable alternatives for managing allergy symptoms include Asthma medications, decongestants, antihistamines, nasal steroids, and immunotherapy. In this blog, we will help you to understand the causes, types, symptoms, and treatment options for allergies in order to provide you with valuable insight into how to manage them.

 

What is an allergy?

When a person's immune system reacts to an alien protein, that is known as an allergy. In most cases, these proteins are also known as allergens that don't do any harm to your body. On the other hand, if someone is allergic to a certain protein, then their immune system will overreact to its presence.

 

Causes of Allergy

Although the precise cause of allergies is not entirely understood, research suggests that a combination of inherited and environmental factors likely plays a significant role. Some people may be genetically predisposed to allergies, while others may develop sensitivities as a result of continuous exposure to allergens.

 

Common Allergy Symptoms

While signs and symptoms of allergy vary based on the kind and severity of the allergy, there are certain common warning signals to look out for:

  • Clogged or runny nose
  • Symptoms of skin response to allergy might include hives, itching, and rashes.
  • Problems with the gastrointestinal tract leading to problems like vomiting, nausea, or stomach discomfort
  • Red and watery eyes
  • Sneezing and itchiness, especially in the eyes, nose, or throat area

Suggested Read: ALLERGY DURING FESTIVE AND WINTERS

Symptoms of Insect Sting Allergies

  • Noticeable amount of swelling on the sting area.
  • Chest constriction
  • Abrupt lowering of blood pressure
  • Breathing difficulty
  • Itchiness of the skin
  • Wheezing
  • Hives, or a rash that covers the body and is red and extremely itchy
  • Cough
  • Restlessness

Symptoms of Pollen and Dander Allergies

  • Wet and swollen eyes
  • Itching nose and eyes
  • A congested and stuffy nose
  • Running nose
  • Cough

Signs and Symptoms of Hay fever or Allergic Rhinitis

  • Sneezing
  • Itching in the eyes, the roof of the mouth or the nose.
  • Runny, congested nose
  • Eyes that are puffy, red, or watery (conjunctivitis)

Symptoms of Food Allergies

  • In-mouth tingling
  • Lips, tongue, face, or throat swelling
  • Hives
  • Anaphylaxis

 

Types of allergies

Hay Fever (Seasonal Allergies)

Sneezing, watery, itchy eyes, nasal congestion, and a runny nose are common symptoms of this type of allergy. These allergies develop as a result of the immune system's response to airborne allergens, including pollen and mold spores. Typically, seasonal allergies are more common at various periods of the year when certain plants release pollen.

Food Allergies

Specific foods or ingredients can cause food allergies. Nuts, shellfish, eggs, milk, soy, and wheat are examples of common allergic foods. The symptoms might range from minor stomach discomfort to severe reactions, including breathing problems, swelling, and occasionally anaphylaxis. In order to avoid reactions that are adverse, it is essential to recognise and stay away from specific allergens.

Drug Allergies 

Some people may develop allergies to specific medicines, including non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and antibiotics (like penicillin). Symptoms can vary and include skin rashes, hives, swelling, and, in extreme cases, anaphylaxis. To avoid difficulties during any medical treatment, it is critical to alert healthcare personnel about any known drug sensitivities.

Severe Allergies

When an allergic reaction is severe, it can cause anaphylaxis, a life-threatening emergency in which breathing difficulties, dizziness, and consciousness occur. If you experience these signs and symptoms after encountering a possible allergen, then seek immediate medical help. Each person experiences an allergic reaction differently.

Skin Allergies

When an allergen or irritant contacts the skin, the immune system overreacts, causing skin allergies, sometimes referred to as allergic skin responses. This can include factors like particular fabrics, scents, soaps, and plants, among other things. Skin allergies can cause a wide range of symptoms, but most frequently include redness, itching, rash, hives, or blisters. Some people could have more serious effects, such as swelling or breathing problems.

 

Medical Treatment of Allergy

Drugs can help a person control the symptoms of an allergic response, but they can't cure an allergy.

There are several over-the-counter treatments available for treating an allergy. However, a person should consult a physician or a pharmacist before using a drug. Various Options consist of:

Antihistamines: These prevent the immune system's production of histamine during an allergic response.

Decongestants: These medicines can help open up a stuffy nose.

Corticosteroids: These are available as pills, creams, nasal sprays, and inhalers. They aid in lowering inflammation.

Immunotherapy: This can assist in a person's long-term tolerance development. The allergen will be administered orally or intravenously in steadily increasing amounts.

Leukotriene Receptor Antagonists (antileukotrienes): These can assist with certain allergies when the other therapies have failed. Some of the substances that induce swelling are blocked by the medicines.

 

Various Tests for Allergy

Listed below are the different tests for allergies: -

Blood Tests 

These measure the levels of IgE antibodies to some specific allergens in the immune system.

Recommended allergy test: Allergy Screening Package 

Using Skin Prick Testing 

A doctor will prick the skin with a little quantity of a potential allergy. The person may have an allergy if their skin reacts by becoming itchy, red, or swollen.

Patch Test 

A doctor could apply a metal disc to a patient's back that contains a little bit of a potential allergen to test for contact eczema. After 48 hours, they'll check for a skin response and then again after two days.

 

It is critical to comprehend the causes, types, symptoms, and possible therapies for allergies in order to manage this frequent condition. By identifying their allergens, adopting preventive precautions, and employing the appropriate therapies, people with allergies can successfully minimise their symptoms and improve their overall quality of life.

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