Allergy Testing

Allergies are among the most common chronic conditions worldwide. Allergy symptoms range from making you miserable to putting you at risk for life-threatening reactions.

Our immune system protects us from invading organisms that can cause illness. If you have an allergy, your immune system mistakes an otherwise harmless substance as an invader. This substance is called an allergen. The immune system overreacts to the allergen by producing Immunoglobulin E (IgE) antibodies. These antibodies travel to cells that release histamine and other chemicals, causing an allergic reaction.

Allergies are among the most common chronic conditions worldwide. Allergy symptoms range from making you miserable to putting you at risk for life-threatening reactions.

Our immune system protects us from invading organisms that can cause illness. If you have an allergy, your immune system mistakes an otherwise harmless substance as an invader. This substance is called an allergen. The immune system overreacts to the allergen by producing Immunoglobulin E (IgE) antibodies. These antibodies travel to cells that release histamine and other chemicals, causing an allergic reaction.

Allergy Symptoms

An allergic reaction typically triggers symptoms in the nose, lungs, throat, sinuses, ears, lining of the stomach or on the skin. For some people, allergies can also trigger symptoms of asthma. In the most serious cases, a life-threatening reaction called anaphylaxis can occur.

A number of different allergens are responsible for allergic reactions. The most common include:
• Pollen
• Dust
• Food
• Insect stings
• Animal dander
• Mold
• Medications
• Latex

When is Allergy Testing Appropriate?

Testing is generally safe and effective for adults and children of all ages. The allergen extracts or vaccines used in allergy tests performed by allergists meet U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requirements.

Symptoms which usually prompt an allergy test include:
• Respiratory: itchy eyes, nose or throat; nasal congestion, runny nose, watery eyes, chest congestion, cough or wheezing
• Skin: itchiness or eczema
• Abdominal: vomiting or cramping and diarrhea consistently after eating certain foods
• Severe reactions to stinging insect stings (other than swelling at the site of the sting)
• Anaphylaxis: a serious allergic reaction that affects many parts of the body at the same time

Allergy Skin Test (IgE)

This type of testing is the most common and is relatively painless. A very small amount of certain allergens is put into your skin by making a small indentation or “prick” on the surface of your skin.

If you have allergies, just a little swelling that looks and feels like a mosquito bite will occur where the allergen to which you are allergic was introduced. If you are allergic to ragweed pollen but not to cats, only the ragweed allergen will cause a little swelling or itching. The spot where the cat allergen was applied will remain normal.

You don’t have to wait long to find out what is triggering your allergies. Reactions occur within about 20 minutes. And you generally won’t have any other symptoms besides the small hives where the tests were done, which go away within 30 minutes.

Once you know exactly what you are allergic to, you and your doctor will be able to develop a treatment plan to reduce or eliminate your allergy symptoms

Allergies are among the most common chronic conditions worldwide. Allergy symptoms range from making you miserable to putting you at risk for life-threatening reactions.

Our immune system protects us from invading organisms that can cause illness. If you have an allergy, your immune system mistakes an otherwise harmless substance as an invader. This substance is called an allergen. The immune system overreacts to the allergen by producing Immunoglobulin E (IgE) antibodies. These antibodies travel to cells that release histamine and other chemicals, causing an allergic reaction.


Allergy Drops (SLIT)s

Allergy Drops have been popular throughout the world for over 60 years. In the comfort of your home, you simply place a few drops of serum (the same serum used in allergy shots) under your tongue every day. You only need to visit your healthcare provider every 12 weeks for a refill and a quick follow-up. By your first follow-up, you’ll likely notice a marked improvement. Within a few months you should realize a significant reduction in the need for allergy medications. And, in four years, if you are like most patients you will experience complete remission of your environmental allergies for over 15 years.

Benefits of Allergy Drops

  • Natural and extremely safe with rare, mild side effects
  • Noticeable relief within just two months of starting treatment; many patients improve in as little as a few weeks
  • Painless — no shots or needles
  • Eliminate the need for excess trips to the doctor’s office, thus saving lots of time and money
  • Effective for everyone from young children to seniors
  • Long-lasting results — possibly for your entire life

Avoidance

This is always the first course of action avoid things that make you allergic. This approach is not always practical or desirable. For instance, you may be able to remove offending plants from your home but pollen can travel up to 50 miles, so you are always vulnerable to trees, flowers and weeds from your neighborhood and city. Animals that cause allergies may be taken away but their dander can remain in a home for up to six months; if you visit a home with pets, their hair stays when they’re not present.

Additionally, even thorough efforts to clear your home of allergens can fall short against relentless household dust, cockroaches or hidden mold. Therefore, avoidance is a major challenge and it can significantly impact your quality of life (especially if you like the animals, trees and flowers that cause your allergies.)

Medication

The goal of virtually all prescription and over-the-counter allergy medications is to stop allergy symptoms temporarily. They do nothing to relieve the CAUSE of your allergies, which is why your misery returns every time you encounter allergens your body doesn’t like.

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