What is an allergy?
- An allergy is an adverse reaction to a substance that others find harmless. For example, the dust that makes you sneeze isn’t actually dangerous for your body. In someone with a dust allergy, for example, their body has mistakenly identified it as a threat and therefore launches a full-out attack against it.
- If the substance in question actually was dangerous, then this attack would be helpful to the body–symptoms such as watery eyes, sneezing, and diarrhea are all healthy ways our bodies have to clear unwanted substances out of our body. But when the offending substance is just a speck of dust or pollen, this response is overly exaggerated and leaves you feeling miserable!
What are the common symptoms of allergies?
- Many people who have allergies know they have allergies–especially those of us who deal with seasonal allergies know the misery of these symptoms: Sniffling, sneezing, runny nose, nasal congestion, sinus pressure, itchy, red, or watery eyes, scratchy throat, post nasal drip, ear aches, coughing.
- However, many people who have allergies don’t even realize they are allergic to anything because their symptoms are slightly different. For example, did you know that allergies can cause or contribute to:
- Fatigue and insomnia
- Childhood and Adult Asthma
- Mental focus and concentration problems
- Emotional concerns like anxiety or depression
- Weight Gain
- Digestive Disturbance
- This is why allergies are important to eliminate because they can affect so many aspects of our overall health!
What are the most common allergies?
- Although many, many things can cause an allergic response in the body, most allergens fall into one of three main categories:
- Environmental- i.e. Dust mites, Dust, Pollen, Ragweed, Grasses, Trees, Molds
- Chemical- i.e. Fumes, Exhaust, Herbicides, Pesticides, Plastics
- Food allergens- i.e. Wheat, Dairy, Corn, Soy, Egg, Food additives and preservatives
What types of allergies are you able to test?
- Suspected allergens are grouped into the following categories. Typically one category is addressed per visit.
- Food Allergens
- Wheat, Gluten, Grains
- Dairy, Eggs
- Soy, Corn, Oils, Fish/Shellfish
- Food additives, preservatives, and colorings
- Environmental Allergens
- Dust, Dust Mites, Pollen, Ragweed
- Grasses, Trees, Smuts/Rusts, Molds
- Chemical Allergens
- Inhalants, Fumes, Exhaust, Solvents
- Herbicides, Pesticides, Plastics, Carcinogens
- Home allergens
- Patients can bring items from their own homes to test! Bring in samples of the plants that bloom in your yard and gather up the cleaning products that you use in your home. Many people bring in the fur from their pets, allowing them to be tested not for generic “cat” or “dog” allergies, but to be tested for allergies to their own pets!
- Food Allergens