Allergy is a hypersensitivity reaction mediated by IgE antibodies. Normal harmless substances like pollen and food can cause the immune system to defend the body against it. In an allergic reaction, the antibodies can release a chemical called histamine, which is the primary cause of allergic symptoms. The severity of allergy differs from person to person and can range from mild irritation to anaphylaxis.
The substances that cause allergic reactions are allergens. Following are few of the allergens:
Following are a few of the treatment options of allergy:
Initially, the doctor asks the patient about his food habits, medication, and medical history. Following tests may be suggested by the doctor:
The severity of symptoms can vary depending on the allergen. Some of the symptoms include:
When the body comes in contact with an allergen it releases a natural chemical called histamine that defends allergen. This chemical can cause allergic rhinitis that leads to inflammation of the nose. Symptoms include sneezing, a runny nose, itchy nose or throat, and watery eyes. Treatment includes taking antihistamines that block the production of histamines. Eye drops, and nasal sprays are used to relieve symptoms.
A severe life-threatening allergic reaction leads to anaphylaxis. It can occur within seconds to minutes when exposed to an allergen. Certain foods, medications, insect venom, and latex are common triggers for anaphylaxis. It can cause a series of symptoms such as rash, low pulse, and shock, which is anaphylactic shock. Seek an immediate consultation with the doctor as it requires treatment of epinephrine. If anaphylaxis isn’t treated immediately it can lead to fatal and may cause death.