Allergy Season Is Upon Us: What Do I Need To Know?
It is spring, and that means it is allergy season! Spring is a joyful time for many people. Spring means it is the end of winter and we can finally enjoy birds chirping, bees buzzing, trees and flowers blossoming, and the brisk, balmy breeze of 60-degree weather.
Did you shudder at the mention of bees, trees, and flowers? Then you may be one of 50 million people in the United States who suffers from allergies each year.1 Yes, you read that right: 50 MILLION! Additionally, about 25 million of those allergy-sufferers have allergic asthma.2
What causes an allergy?
Our immune system produces antibodies, which are generally good things. Antibodies stop potentially harmful foreign bodies in their tracks, such as bacteria and viruses. However, when we experience an allergy, our antibodies are reacting to foreign bodies that aren't harmful, such as pollen, mold, or certain foods. This reaction causes allergy symptoms, such as inflamed airways, irritated skin, or sinus troubles.3
What are the different types of allergies?
Unfortunately, we can be allergic to lots of different things. Some types of allergies include:
- Food, such as peanuts, soy, or dairy
- Respiratory, such as mold, dander, and pollen
How do I know if I'm allergic to something?
You may have a sense that you are allergic to something after experiencing some classic allergy symptoms. However, it is hard to know exactly what you are allergic to, especially since potential allergy triggers are everywhere. If you want a more in-depth look at your allergies, consider talking to your doctor about having an allergy test done.
There are a variety of different allergy tests, the most common being skin prick tests. Other types include intradermal skin tests, blood tests, physician-supervised challenge tests, and patch tests.4
Resources on various types of allergies
Interested in reading more about specific types of allergies? Check out these resources:
How do allergies affect asthma?
Allergic asthma is the most common type of asthma, affecting around 60% of asthmatics.2 This means that if you currently have asthma, you are likely to experience some sort of allergy in your lifetime. The severity of our allergies varies greatly from person to person; some people may be allergic to many things, while others may only be allergic to one or two things.
To learn more about allergic asthma, check out some of the following articles and sections:
- Finding Relief for Allergic Asthma
- Gaining Control of Allergic Asthma
- I’ve Got Allergic Asthma – Now What?!?!
Tell us about your allergies
We want to continue to contribute to the growing body of information about allergies. If you experience allergies of any kind, please consider sharing your experience with us.
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