Allergy and Asthma Specialist Questions and Answers
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Hay fever, also known as allergic rhinitis, is the most common seasonal allergy in the United States. In fact, it is estimated that over 60 million Americans have symptoms of allergic rhinitis, which equates to between 10 and 30 percent of adults, and as much 40 percent of children suffer from hay fever. And those numbers continue to increase. Allergic reactions occur when your immune system reacts to protect you from a foreign substance, by making antibodies that identify a particular allergen as harmful to you, even if it isn’t. When an allergen enters your body, by either eating something or breathing it in, your immune system reacts by inflaming your skin, sinuses, airways or digestive system. Severity of allergic reactions vary from person to person, and the range of symptoms can range from minor irritations, like sneezing and itchy eyes, to a potentially life-threatening anaphylactic reaction. Most allergies can’t be cured, but can been relieved with oral and topical medications. Ranging from mild to severe, symptoms of allergies depend on the substance causing the allergic reaction. Some affect the sinuses and nasal passages, the skin, digestive system or the airways. Hay fever, and most seasonal allergy symptoms include sneezing, itching in the nose, eyes and roof of the mouth, and stuffy and runny nose. Food allergies can display different symptoms than seasonal allergies, and can include a tingling feeling in the mouth, swelling in the face or throat or on the tongue, hives on the skin, and anaphylaxis. Stings from insects also commonly cause allergic reactions, and can also be fatal to some people. Symptoms include swelling, hives and itching, chest tightness and cough, difficulty breathing, and anaphylaxis. Some people can also have allergies to medications, and symptoms can range for mild to life-threatening and include hives, itchy skin, rash (anywhere on the body), swelling of the face, chest congestion, and anaphylaxis.
Children and adults who suffer from asthma will occasionally have difficulty breathing, however, severe asthma can result in chronic breathing problems.
Some of the symptoms most commonly experienced by those with asthma are:
• Whistling sound while breathing and wheezing
• Feeling of breathlessness
• Tightening feeling around the chest
The above symptoms are not always associated with asthma, as many things can cause these same symptoms, however, they are more indicative of asthma if they are triggered by an allergy (asthma trigger), or physical exertion, are persistent and recurring, and seem to worse in the early morning or evening.
Asthma and allergies, quite commonly occur at the same time, and some common allergies that can trigger an asthmatic reaction include tobacco smoke, air pollution, medications, molds, cleaning, and disinfecting products, pollen, and dust mites, pet dander, and feathers. A food allergy is very concerning for those with asthma, as it can trigger a life-threatening reaction called anaphylaxis. Those with asthma, as well as those with food allergies, are advised to always carry with them an epinephrine auto-injector in case of ingestion and symptoms begin from peanuts, cow’s milk, tree nuts, eggs, soy, wheat, and various shellfish and shrimp. A wide range of things can affect, or cause an asthmatic reaction, and allergies like eczema, food allergies, and seasonal allergies are triggers for an asthmatic reaction that can increase a person’s chances of becoming asthmatic.
Our highly trained team of physicians, urgent care nurses, and our knowledgeable and friendly staff at Eastside Urgent Care in Cincinnati, take great pride in the level of professional and compassionate care every patient receives and deserves. For more information, please call us or schedule an appointment online. Visit us at 872 Ohio Pike Cincinnati, OH 45245. We serve patients from Cincinnati OH, Covedale OH, Delhi OH, St Bernard OH, Bridgetown North OH, and Elmwood Place OH.