Few important things to know about allergies

Posted by george whittington on December 12th, 2019

The role of the immune system is to protect you from harmful pathogens. Depending on the type of allergen, you may experience allergy symptoms such as sneezing, inflammation, etc. Allergies are common and several medicines are available for treating allergy symptoms.

Allergy symptoms may vary depending on several factors. These mainly include the type of allergy and its severity. If you are suffering from food allergies, you can experience symptoms such as fatigue, hives, swelling, and nausea, etc. If you experience a severe allergic reaction after a meal, consult your physician at once. Your physician can tell you the exact cause of your reaction.

Seasonal allergies can produce symptoms similar to that of a cold. These include a runny nose, swollen eyes, and congestion. These symptoms subside on their own. Normally, they do not require any allergy medicine. However, if your symptoms continue for a long period of time, consult your physician.

Severe allergies can lead to anaphylaxis. It is a life-threatening condition that can produce lightheadedness, difficulty in breathing, and unconsciousness. If you observe these symptoms after exposure to a possible allergen, seek medical assistance at once.

An allergen is usually a harmless foreign substance that enters the body and produces allergy reactions.

Various common types of allergens include

  • Plant pollens
  • Animal products such as pet dander
  • Medicines such as penicillin and sulfa drugs
  • Certain foods like wheat, nuts, milk, shellfish, and eggs
  • Insect stings from wasps, bees, and mosquitoes.

Treatment 

The best way of preventing allergies is to avoid contact with the particular allergen. However, if that is not feasible various treatment options are available. Allergy medicines are commonly used for managing allergy symptoms. Some of them are available on prescription, while few are sold over the counter. Your physician will prescribe you the right allergy medication depending on the severity of the allergy.

Antihistamines are the class of allergy medicines that are widely prescribed for treating allergy symptoms. These medicines come in two forms- first-generation and second-generation antihistamines.

First-generation antihistamines are sedating and thus they are likely to make you drowsy. These allergy medicines do not stay for a long time in your system and thus repeated dosing is required as compared to the newer generations. Benadryl and Chlor-Trimeton are examples of first-generation antihistamines. The commonly observed side effects with this type of antihistamines include dizziness, dry mouth, and headache. First-generation antihistamines are contraindicated for use in individuals suffering from hypertension, glaucoma, heart disease, thyroid issuers, and seizures, etc.

Second-generation antihistamines are non-sedating and thus they are less likely to produce drowsiness. They also remain in the system for a long period of time, so you require lesser doses. Zyrtec, Allegra are examples of second-generation antihistamines. The common side effects include headache, rash and stomach pain.

These medications work by blocking the action of histamine. Histamine is the endogenous substance that produces an allergic response.

Corticosteroids are the class of allergy meds that are prescribed for treating allergy symptoms such as inflammation and swelling. Decongestants help to relieve allergy symptoms such as clogged sinuses, stuffy nose, etc.

Knowing certain important things will result in the effective usage of allergy medicines.


george whittington

About the Author

george whittington
Joined: September 22nd, 2018
Articles Posted: 15

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