Millions of people are affected by seasonal allergies every year, and severe allergies can make life miserable. Symptoms of an allergy can include congestion, runny nose, sneezing, itchy and watery eyes, itchy throat and more. If you suffer from seasonal allergies, limiting your exposure to allergens and taking over-the-counter medications might not be enough to significantly reduce your symptoms. First, you should know if the nature of you’re allergy symptoms are common or severe.
Signs of Severe Seasonal Allergy Symptoms
While ear congestion and postnatal drainage can seem like severe allergy symptoms, they are actually quite common. Severe allergy symptoms include:
- Chest tightness and shortness of breath.
- Wheezing and shortness of breath.
- Itchy and red rashes, also known as hives.
- Tiredness and fatigue.
- Insomnia due to lingering symptoms.
When you start experiencing severe symptoms such as these, we recommend you seek medical help. Sometimes, allergic reactions can be caused by things you might not be aware of being allergic to. We have a variety of allergy tests that can pinpoint just what is causing your allergies.
How Allergy Testing Works
You will need to come in for a consultation as the first step in conducting an allergy test. One of our physicians will ask you about your medical history, lifestyle and more. This is to get an idea of what kind of allergens might be causing your allergic reactions.
We use skin or blood samples to conduct allergy tests. One way of conduction a skin test is by placing a known allergin in liquid and puncturing a tiny hole in the skin. Then the allergin is placed within the puncture wound. The patient is then monitored for signs or symptoms of an allergic reaction. However, this is just one kind of skin test out of several that we choose from, depending on the particular needs of our patients.
Blood tests are conducted instead of skin tests when there is a chance that our patients might have a severe allergic reaction to a skin test. With blood tests, we will be looking for antibodies that are associated with any of a large number of known allergies.
Once our physicians pinpoint exactly what substance is causing your allergic reactions, we can begin putting together a treatment plan.
While avoiding the allergens that cause your allergies makes the most sense, it isn’t always realistic or practical. One way of treating allergies is to increase the immune system’s tolerance to the allergin or get it to respond differently without causing an allergic reaction. Allergy immunotherapy, also known as allergy shots, is a treatment option. It involves injecting minuscule amounts of the allergen into the bloodstream to strengthen the immune system, very much the way a vaccine works.
If this form of treatment doesn’t suit your individual needs, there are others to choose from. Let us help you live as allergy-free as possible. Schedule a consultation with a physician at Alabama Ear, Nose and Throat Specialists today.