Allergies, like us, come in all shapes and sizes. They happen when your immune system reacts to a foreign substance that’s harmless to most people…but your body doesn’t see it that way. When you encounter the offending substance, your immune system kicks into overdrive, trying to protect you from something it perceives to be a threat. This reaction can cause swelling and inflammation where you really don’t want it, like your skin, sinuses, and digestive system. Everyone’s heard of seasonal allergies, but—fun fact—there are more than 10 different categories of allergies that can affect different parts of your body, and an estimated 50 million people in the U.S. suffer from one or more of them. The most commonly diagnosed allergic conditions include those to pets, insect stings, foods (especially nuts, shellfish, soy, milk, eggs, and wheat—including gluten!), and mold, though you can potentially be allergic to anything, including medications you might need to control a condition. (Allergies—they really know how to be inconvenient, don’t they?) Sometimes allergy symptoms are pretty obvious, like when you break out in hives after using a new moisturizer. Other times—say, when your eyes and throat are scratchy—it can be difficult to determine what’s triggering your symptoms. That’s when a visit to a practitioner who specializes in allergies can help. Unfortunately, there’s no single test or procedure that can provide a comprehensive diagnosis. Instead, your practitioner will rely on a combination of factors, including your medical and personal history, a detailed symptom diary, and one or more allergy tests. Allergy tests include the skin prick test, patch test, blood test (Specific IgE), and challenge test. It’s important to know that allergy tests don’t always indicate the severity of an allergy, but that information is critical for your life. An allergic reaction can be mild, or it can be severe—as in full-blown anaphylaxis, a life-threatening reaction. People with severe allergies should carry a rescue medication (like an EpiPen) at all times. And if you are having an allergic reaction and are having trouble breathing or feel like your lips, tongue, or throat is swelling, seek emergency care ASAP. To treat allergies, you need to come at them from all sides. You can start by avoiding the allergen as much as possible. But let’s be real, giving up your rescue kitten is a lot harder than giving up, say, your morning bagel or eggs (though if that’s your fave breakfast, that might be hard too!). If avoidance isn’t a realistic option, then there are other steps you can take. Unfortunately, there’s no cure for allergies, but if you need to relieve the symptoms it may help to turn to a combination of over-the-counter and prescription meds, such as eye drops and antihistamines. If you want to take on allergies proactively (versus avoiding allergens and dealing with reactions as needed), you may also want to try allergy shots, a type of immunotherapy that works by exposing you to low doses of the offending allergen. If you’re interested in immunotherapy or just want to swap allergy war stories, talk to your WanaFam about their experiences. That’s what we’re here for!
Recent posts about Allergies
hello all. I’m new to this app and have really been struggling. I have asthma, allergies, eczema, IBS, interstitial cystitis, and endometriosis. my current symptoms are completely affecting my quality of life and I have bouts of depression because I feel so terrible all the time. I feel like I’m a total mess. I feel like my personality is changing from a bubbly, happy, outgoing person to a fatigued, emotional, withdrawn person. I just want to be happy again.
clap your hands if you.. have anxiety Your a hypochondriac Have panic disorder Are deathly afraid of health conditions have odd scary symptoms And have seasonal allergies are not a fan of this corona thing
I just found out I have a latex allergy. Any advice on things to avoid? I already have no latex on my clothing. Thanks
Hi everyone! this is for my peeps with bad allergies and sinus issues: any tips on dealing with sinus caused inner ear problems? I’ve only had it a few times, but both times it’s been terribly painful and my eardrum feels the sinus draining and I can hear it (gross). all my normal sinus methods work sometimes, but not all the time. is this something I should have checked out?
I’ve been hearing a lot lately about the carnivore diet and how it can help heal many issues. It makes sense to me from a Keto perspective but I can’t imagine eating meat only. I’m willing to try it though! Who is on a carnivore diet and has it helped your symptoms of brain fog, gut issues, inflammation, allergies etc heal?
Videos about Allergies
Books about Allergies
The Food Allergy Fix: An Integrative and Evidence-Based Approach to Food Allergen Desensitization
Eating should be fun, not cause for fear. But for children with food allergies, the condition transforms even simple pleasures like parties and picnics into dangerous minefields. Instead of resigning themselves to a lifetime of avoidance and exclusion, food allergy sufferers can now take action and embrace the promise of desensitization therapy. In The Food Allergy Fix, board-certified allergist and immunologist Dr. Sakina Bajowala discusses how allergies can be managed through sublingual and oral immunotherapy, which retrains overactive immune systems through the precise administration of foods. Combining rich history and current scientific research, Dr. Bajowala arms parents and patients with the tools they need to begin working with a trained immunologist, while walking readers through her innovative and holistic treatment process. The incredible success of Dr. Bajowala’s integrative approach proves that it is possible to live in a world free from the chains of a food allergy diagnosis. This book is the first step toward reclaiming freedom.
An Epidemic of Absence: A New Way of Understanding Allergies and Autoimmune Diseases
A brilliant, groundbreaking report on the dramatic rise of allergic and autoimmune disease, and the controversial therapies scientists are developing to correct these disorders. From asthma to Crohn’s disease, everyone knows someone who suffers from an allergic or autoimmune disorder. And if it appears that the prevalence of these maladies has increased recently, that’s because it has—to levels never before seen in human history. These days no fewer than one in five—and likely more—Americans suffers from one of these ailments. We seem newly, and bafflingly, vulnerable to immune system malfunction. Why? One possibility is that we have systematically cleaned ourselves to illness; this belief challenges deeply entrenched notions about the value of societal hygiene and the harmful nature of microbes. Yet scientists investigating the rampant immune dysfunction in the developed world have inevitably arrived at this conclusion. To address this global “epidemic of absence,” they must restore the human ecosystem. This groundbreaking book explores the promising but controversial “worm therapy”—deliberate infection with parasitic worms—in development to treat autoimmune disease. It explains why farmers’ children so rarely get hay fever, why allergy is less prevalent in former Eastern Bloc countries, and how one cancer-causing bacterium may be good for us. It probes the link between autism and a dysfunctional immune system. It investigates the newly apparent fetal origins of allergic disease—that a mother’s inflammatory response imprints on her unborn child, tipping the scales toward allergy. An Epidemic of Absence is a brilliant, cutting-edge exploration of the dramatic rise of allergic and autoimmune diseases and the controversial, potentially groundbreaking therapies that scientists are developing to correct these disorders.
The 7-Day Allergy Makeover: A Simple Program to Eliminate Allergies and Restore Vibrant Health from the Inside Out
A top allergy specialist provides a simple holistic program that helps a broad range of allergy sufferers heal themselves naturally. THE 7 DAY ALLERGY MAKEOVER is written for people who want to take an active role in their own healing. The book lays out action-oriented, step-by-step instructions on uncovering the root cause of allergies, and makes simple but specific changes that can stop allergy symptoms from recurring. What began as a mother’s desperation to save her son has led to a comprehensive program that helps a broad range of allergy sufferers heal themselves naturally. As an allergy specialist, Dr. Susanne Bennett sees roughly 100 patients a week, from children to movie stars. They come to her after exhausting every resource: doctors, medicines, creams, shots, you name it. They suffer from hives, sneezing, headaches, asthma, muscle aches, swelling and digestive problems, and more. THE 7 DAY ALLERGY MAKEOVER, based on 23 years of Dr. Bennett’s clinical experience, is an easy-to-implement and transformational plan for eliminating allergies from your life forever. Each chapter in THE 7 DAY ALLERGY MAKEOVER focuses on a different aspect of health and environment for a person suffering from allergies--nutrition, air quality, living environment, water, body hygiene, and emotional and mental stresses.
Podcasts about Allergies
Sawbones: A Marital Tour of Misguided Medicine: Asthma and Allergies
Welcome to Sawbones, where Dr. Sydnee McElroy and her husband Justin McElroy take you on a whimsical tour of the dumb ways in which we've tried to fix people. This week: We cure your sniffles with fox blood.
The Brian Lehrer Show: Adult-Onset Food Allergies Become More Common
Ruchi Gupta, pediatrician and professor of pediatrics and medicine at Northwestern Medicine and director of the Science and Outcomes of Allergy and Asthma Research Team at Northwestern, talks about a recent study where she found more than 10 percent of American adults have a food allergy, and about half of that group developed a new food allergy as adults — numbers that surprised her.
Stuff You Should Know: Gesundheit! How Allergies Work
In this week's SYSK Select episode, about 30-40 percent of humans suffer from some sort of allergy. The big joke, though, is that every sufferer is the victim of mistaken identity. Allergies are the result of a hypersensitive immune system mistaking a harmless protein for a foreign invader.
House Call With Dr. Hyman: 4 Steps to Getting Rid of Seasonal Allergies
“Dr. Hyman, I’ve been suffering from seasonal allergies for years,” writes this week’s house call. “Is there anything that I can do to make these go away or am I doomed forever?” You are definitely not doomed; however, I do know how miserable seasonal allergies can be, especially in the spring and summer. Conventional medicine treats seasonal allergies with injections and pills, which unfortunately, create side effects and fail to address the root problem. If you don’t address the root cause, then the allergies will never go away.
- American Academy of Allergy Asthma & Immunology. Allergy Library. American Academy of Allergy Asthma & Immunology. Allergy Library.
- JAMA Network Open. Prevalence and Severity of Food Allergies Among US Adults. JAMA Network Open. Prevalence and Severity of Food Allergies Among US Adults.
- Mayo Clinic. Allergies. Mayo Clinic. Allergies.
- Mayo Clinic. Milk allergy. Mayo Clinic. Milk allergy.
- The Royal Children’s Hospital Melbourne. Allergy and Immunology. The Royal Children’s Hospital Melbourne. Allergy and Immunology.
- Current Perspectives. Non–IgE-mediated gastrointestinal food allergy. Current Perspectives. Non–IgE-mediated gastrointestinal food allergy.