If you’re in the 30% of American adults with some form of allergies, you want to identify them so you can avoid your allergens and manage your symptoms if they arise. At International Medical Clinics (IMC) in Atlanta, the expert team of providers can help diagnose your allergies and create a strategy to manage them. If you suspect that you have allergies to something, call IMC, or schedule an appointment online for more information today.
Allergies are a long-term condition that causes your immune system to overreact when you come into contact with certain foods or substances.
The things to which you’re allergic, called allergens, typically aren’t inherently dangerous.
However, your immune system treats them like invaders and triggers a protective response that comes in the form of irritating symptoms.
You can be allergic to nearly anything: Particles in the air, certain foods, and product ingredients are all common allergens that can cause reactions when you ingest, inhale, or touch them.
Some of the most common allergens are:
If you aren’t sure what caused an allergic reaction, your provider at IMC can perform tests to identify your allergen.
Allergic reactions can vary greatly in their type and severity depending on what you’re allergic to and how you came into contact with it.
Common symptoms of allergic reactions are:
In extreme cases of allergic reactions, you may experience a life-threatening reaction called anaphylaxis. If you notice that your tongue and throat are swelling, you can’t breathe, or that you feel dizzy, you need to get medical help immediately.
Allergy management varies on a case-by-case basis, but the best way to manage your allergies is to avoid your allergens altogether.
In some cases, avoiding the allergen is impossible or unreasonable. Your doctor might prescribe or suggest:
Histamines are a compound that your cells release to trigger your immune system’s response. Antihistamine drugs block histamines from taking action.
Steroid sprays reduce nasal congestion and inflammation from an allergic reaction when you spray them up your nose. This opens your airways for easier breathing.
Decongestants are medications for short-term use only. They unblock your air passages to help you breathe after you become congested from an allergic reaction.
Your doctor may suggest immunotherapy to gradually expose your body to your allergen and increase your tolerance of it. This method of treatment is reserved for only severe allergies.
Having allergic reactions and consciously avoiding your allergens can disrupt your life. To explore treatments and management strategies, call IMC, or book a visit online today.