Are you bothered with seasonal allergies?
The changing seasons are almost upon us once more, and with them come changes in vegetation and air quality that can contribute to allergies.
If you are one of the more than 36 million Americans who suffer from some sort of allergies, the changing seasons can be very uncomfortable and unwelcome. Symptoms like persistent runny nose, dry cough, watery eyes, and constant sneezing are indicators that something is rebelling in your body, causing a histamine response and making you absolutely miserable.
Rather than living with the discomfort of mild to debilitating allergies, why not do something about treatment and experience some welcome relief from them? With all of the recent advancements in over the counter medications, allergy treatments given by doctors, and even cleansing and nutritional protocols that can help alleviate them, it is now possible to reduce and, in some cases, even eliminate the symptoms of allergies altogether. Isn’t it time that you put your allergies to rest?
How do I know if I have allergies?
Most allergy sufferers know what their symptoms are, but they may not know what triggers these unwelcome histamine responses. If you have questions about whether or not you have an allergy to something, visit your doctor and ask about signs and symptoms. Your doctor may want to perform a series of tests using known allergens to see if they trigger a response. Once allergens are identified, your doctor will then be able to prescribe a protocol that reduces or eliminates symptoms. Common tests for allergies include:
Skin tests: Your doctor will stimulate your system with a series of small pricks containing proteins from known allergens. If itching or redness occurs, this is an indication that you have an allergy to that substance.
Blood tests: Specific types of blood tests measure the amount of allergy-causing antibodies present in your bloodstream. Your doctor will collect a sample of your blood and send it to a laboratory for testing on sensitivities to specific allergens.
What treatments are available for allergies?
There are several things you can do to reduce or eliminate allergy symptoms. They include:
- Allergen avoidance
Once identified, your doctor can give you strategies on how to avoid your specific allergy triggers. If outdoor pollen irritates you, consider the use of a mask when wearing yard work, or take frequent showers if outside for extended periods. Other known allergens, like pet dander or food allergies, require that you avoid exposure to them. While this may be unwelcome news, the possibility of lifelong histamine response by your body as a result of repeated exposure is far less exciting. Consider altering your lifestyle to accommodate this need to avoid certain substances or even animals.
- Taking medication
Depending on your specific allergies, your doctor will recommend or prescribe a medication protocol that you can use to alleviate your symptoms. They may be over-the-counter drugs or prescribed medications, and they can include a mixture of liquid, pill, and nasal spray forms for your convenience. Take only as directed, of course, and be sure to report any adverse effects to your doctor who can then alter your dose and type of medication to provide you with the best care.
For more severe and persistent allergies, your doctor may prescribe an immunotherapy protocol. This is a series of injections received over some time—injections are a blend of purified allergen extracts designed to build up the body’s own immune system response to the stimulant. You will be under close supervision while your doctor observes your response to this type of treatment; in many cases, people are completely successful in weaning themselves off of allergy medications and are allowed to live life to the fullest once more. According to Ran Y. Rubinstein, an allergy doctor from Hudson Valley, NY, states that immunotherapy is a short term therapy designed for long term results; many people experience life free from allergy symptoms within a few years of beginning treatment.
- Emergency epinephrine
For severe allergies that could result in an anaphylactic response, the use of an EpiPen is necessary. Food allergies to nuts, allergies to bee stings, and other stimulants that can produce a near-fatal histamine response in people require them to carry an emergency dose of epinephrine, a life-saving drug that can stop the allergic reaction. When using an EpiPen, it is important to note that upon administration, it is essential that EMT responders are called to continue to manage the situation and provide further observation of the allergic reaction to ensure that it remains under control.
You can be free!
It is possible to experience a life free from allergy symptoms; by following your doctor’s advice, committing to trying treatment protocols, and limiting your exposure to potentially triggering events, you too may experience the relief that you have been longing for. Talk to a doctor today about your allergy symptoms, and see how you can regain your quality of life once more. You deserve your healthiest and best life!
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