How do allergy tests work?

Allergy testing

It often happens that people have an allergic reaction to something that they can’t explain. Whether an allergy is newly discovered or new altogether, it’s important to figure out exactly what is bothering you and the severity of the allergy. That’s why there are comprehensive allergy tests available to people of all ages. Rather than continuing to have attacks or not know how to manage symptoms, it’s best to get tested to identify allergies and plan how best to treat them.

Allergy symptoms 

Each allergy causes different reactions depending on the person who is allergic and how severely allergic they are to the specific allergen. Most often, symptoms of allergies will include:

  • Itchy, watery eyes
  • Headaches, dizziness, lightheadedness  
  • Skin rash, hives, blisters, swelling
  • Nasal congestion, runny nose, or sneezing 
  • Coughing, weezing, shortness of breath
  • Nausea, upset stomach, vomiting, diarrhea 

Allergy symptoms can be and are often a combination of any reactions listed above. If symptoms are seriously impacting someone’s health and safety, it’s important to go to the emergency room. If it is not urgent, Breathe Clear Institute allergy tests will find the source of the allergens and come up with the best plan for management and treatment. 

Types of allergy tests

Just as there are many different types of allergens, there are different types of ways to test for allergies. Types of allergy tests include:

  • Skin or scratch tests
  • Intradermal skin tests 
  • Patch tests
  • Blood tests
  • Challenge tests

While there are at-home tests available these days, it’s best to meet with a doctor to go over results rather than descifiering them yourself. For best testing results, patients must clean their systems of any antihistamines before testing, up to five days prior to a scheduled appointment. This is because the doctor needs to see the body’s natural reaction to various allergens without anything blocking it. 

At our clinic, we perform the allergy skin test where 40 allergens are tested on a patient’s skin. These are not invasive and minimally painful, but patients can expect some irritation on the skin (much like a bug bite). Our allergy test appointments usually take about an hour, showing results within the first half-hour and going over those results with the doctor during the second half-hour. 

Together, the doctor and patient will go over what allergens to avoid, how best to steer clear of them, preventative care, and tertiary care for when an allergic reaction happens. Again depending on the severity of a reaction and how it impacts the person, different medication will be prescribed. 

Allergies can greatly affect everyday life and cause great discomfort, some even being life-threatening. However, they are easily tested for and there are plenty of treatment methods available to doctors and patients in order to help make everyday better for people with all types of allergies. 

Get relief today – Schedule an appointment with Breathe Clear Institute

Allergies are very common and usually easy to diagnose, manage, and treat. If there are any abnormal reactions to environmental factors, certain foods, things touched throughout the day, or poor reactions to any everyday surroundings, it’s best to come see us.

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What treatment plans do you offer for allergies?

What are allergies?

Allergies are an abnormal bodily reaction to everyday substances that are otherwise harmless but are invasive to people with allergies. The things that cause allergies are called allergens. Examples of allergens include mold, dust, pollen, certain foods, latex, animal dander, and insect stings. Symptoms and their severity vary between patients, but often cause skin reactions, difficulty breathing or swallowing, and a variety of other irritations. Take the Breathe Clear Institute allergy quiz to learn more.

There are many ways to manage and treat allergies symptoms at home or with help from the pharmacy, but a step beyond would be to come visit us for allergy testing and possible drops or shots to relieve you from your pain. 

Allergy testing

In order to identify which allergens are bothering you, there is a comprehensive testing process. This includes using different samples from common environmental and food allergens placed in a small device that enters the skin. Typically, this allergy testing panel is placed on the forearm for easy examination of any bodily reactions. There is always an included control insertion to use as a comparison to the other 40 injections. Not to worry, it’s not painful but may cause some irritation if any allergies are shown. 

Allergy drops

Before turning to allergy shots, we often recommended oral allergy drops as a form of treatment from allergens. This version of immunotherapy is called sublingual immunotherapy (SLIT) and is meant to decrease  reactions to allergies, giving reprieve from intense symptoms. However, it not only calms reactions to allergens but works to treat the condition itself, which is why these are prescription and not over-the-counter. 

Allergy shots 

If allergy drops aren’t the right form of treatment, the next viable option is often allergy shots. This form of treatment is a series of shots over a period of time meant to stop and or reduce allergic reactions in patients. Usually, a person would receive three to five shots within a year, individual cases depending. A doctor will increase dosage over time in hopes of creating a desensitization and hopefully reduce or eliminate  the body’s reaction to certain allergens.

People with seasonal allergies, indoor allergies, and/or severe reactions to insect stings are the most common recipients of allergy shots. There are, however, risks associated with these shots like local or systemic reactions and anaphylaxis. Allergy shots are a long form of treatment with both a build-up and a maintenance phase. Your doctor will be monitoring throughout the durations, but be sure to be in touch with them if any unusual reactions arise. 

While patients might want to jump quickly into allergy drops and shots, it’s important to try holistic and over-the-counter medications first to see if either garner results. If allergic reactions are severe and worrisome, call your doctor immediately and bypass any at-home remedies. 

Got allergies? Schedule an appointment with Breathe Clear Institute 

Allergies are very common in children and adults. While you may feel like you have them under control, it’s always best to know what you’re allergic to and how best to manage reactions. Allergy testing is quick and easy, and we follow up with various ways to treat symptoms.

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What are the differences between spring and summer allergies?

What are the differences between spring and summer allergies?

Allergies come and go with the seasons, and the symptoms experienced by people with allergies also change with those seasons. While spring is well known for its bloom and subsequent allergies, summer isn’t simply an extension of those allergies but springs from different plants and pollen altogether. 

Plant and tree pollen different greatly from each region of the country. One might experience allergies in the Midwest that they don’t normally feel when living in California. While someone may not have daily allergies, one might experience them while on trips elsewhere, so it’s best to be prepared. Let’s learn the differences between spring and summer allergies and ways to treat them. Take the Breathe Clear Institute allergy quiz to learn more.

Common spring and summer allergy symptoms

Depending on where someone is in the world and the surrounding terrain, allergy seasons occur in different monthly time frames. In the U.S., our spring allergy season is typically from February to May, and summer is from May to June. Common symptoms in both seasons include sneezing, nasal congestion, runny nose, coughing, red itchy eyes, and even asthma flare-ups for certain people. 

What causes spring and summer allergies? How do the two seasons differ?

While the symptoms of spring and summer allergies are similar, the allergens differ between the two. Spring allergies mainly come with trees pollinating and flowering plants, spreading pollen and increasing our exposure to it. 

On the contrary, summer allergies are mainly due to grass allergens that transport in the wind. While July might be considered summer on our calendars, it’s actually the one month of the year that allergens take a break and go on vacation, much like we do.

Regardless of what pollen may be in the air, the wind is what spreads the allergens and can increase with the strength and direction of it.

Best practices to treat these season allergies

Depending on the severity of allergies and the amount of time exposed to the pollens that cause allergic reactions, there are different ways to treat these allergies whether at-home or under the supervision of a doctor at the Breathe Clear Institute. 

At-home/Over-the-counter remedies

Just like checking the weather before you leave the house, you can also check the pollen report to know how light or severe the numbers are when exiting the house. But, allergies also occur indoors, so there are both at-home and over-the-counter treatments to help any and all allergy irritations.

For a more holistic approach, saline solutions and neti pots are a great way to clean your nasal passages, or sitting in a steamy room. Taking showers and changing clothes after a day outside can also help subside any symptoms you might be experiencing. 

Over-the-counter medicines are safe and effective in treating a variety of allergy symptoms. From nasal sprays to 24-hour antihistamines, there are products for temporary and daily relief. If these aren’t enough, it’s time to see a doctor. Click on the link below to make an appointment with us.

Need further help with your allergies? Schedule an appointment with Breathe Clear Institute 

We have dedicated allergists on staff ready to tackle your seasonal allergies, no matter what season it is. Read more about treatment options and book and appointment today to start feeling better tomorrow.

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Tips for Coping with Summer Allergies

Tips for Coping with Summer Allergies

As spring comes to a close, you may be planning beach days, camping trips, and cookouts. Summer has a way of getting us outside. And though fresh air and warm sun are good for the soul, they can be terrible for summertime allergy victims. You might think that summer ushers in at the end of seasonal allergies, but these sultry months actually bring their own set of troublesome allergens. Summer livin’ can quickly become summer suffering. But don’t worry — you can conquer your seasonal allergy woes with these simple tips:

Identify Your Triggers

Summertime allergy triggers can often be different from spring allergies. Eating fresh, in-season fruits can sometimes produce “food pollen syndrome” which will look a lot like typical seasonal allergy symptoms. Additionally, grass pollen reaches high levels during the summer months, followed by ragweed pollen which begins at the end of July. Summer can also bring higher humidity levels, creating the perfect environment for mold spores and dust mites.

Another irritating allergy trigger that emerges in hot weather is insects. Mosquito bites and bee stings can produce particularly troubling allergic reactions, from painful, itchy welts, swelling, or even life-threatening anaphylaxis. Always visit a medical professional if you experience any insect-related allergies. If you don’t know what you’re allergic to, schedule an appointment with an allergist to have an allergy test done. Once you identify your triggers, you can make plans to avoid them.

Use an Antihistamine

Antihistamines aren’t just for springtime allergies. Since they block your body’s response to allergens, they can be used for almost any type of allergy. OTC oral antihistamines are ideal for sneezing, runny noses, watery eyes, and itchiness while prescription intranasal antihistamines can target congestion. However, if you’re plagued by itchy, watery eyes, you may want to give allergy eye drops a try. 

Buy a Nasal Spray

A nasal spray may be the best option for targeting congestion and sinus drip. intranasal corticosteroids, such as fluticasone, are some of the most effective OTC treatments for allergic rhinitis. They can take a couple of days or weeks to work, but you can use them long-term with little to no side effects. If you need short-term relief, try a nasal decongestant spray, such as oxymetazoline. A decongestant spray is a powerful congestion fighter that can work for up to 12 hours. However, using it for more than a few days can cause a rebound effect, resulting in worse or prolonged congestion.

Make Saline Part of Your Routine

Saline is a cheap and safe way to manage summer allergies. Many find relief by regularly irrigating their sinuses with saline sprays or neti pots. As salinated water travels through your nasal passages, it pushes allergens out, clears away mucus, and keeps your sinuses moisturized. If you suffer from dry, irritated eyes, you can opt for pH-balanced saline eye drops. These whisk away allergens while also gently hydrating your eyes.

Keep Your Environment Clean

Pollen, dust, dander, and mold spores all have a pesky habit of clinging to fabric and air particles. And even if you’re good about keeping your windows closed, they can still hitch a ride on your clothing. Make sure to regularly clean your shoes, clothes, and bedding. If possible, remove carpet and drapes from your home or vacuum them daily. You can also help minimize allergen exposure by using filters. Replace your HVAC filters monthly using HEPA filters and use an external air purifier to “scrub” the air. 

Use Insect Repellent

If your insect allergies are severe, consider setting insect traps and spraying your yard with an insect repellent. If you’re out and about, wear long sleeves and pants and use bug spray. Citronella candles may provide additional protection. If you do experience a bite or sting, you can purchase devices that extract the irritating venom from your skin. Topical antihistamines and hydrocortisone can treat itching and minor allergic reactions.

Try Immunotherapy

It could be time to give immunotherapy a “shot.” Immunotherapy (aka allergy shots) works by exposing you to your allergy trigger in small doses over time until your immune system learns to fight it on its own. An allergy doctor will need to administer these injections regularly until you see full results. For those with needle phobias, mouth drops are available, as well.

Breathe Clear Institute Will Help You Cope with Summer Allergies 

Summer should be a time for making memories. If allergies are keeping you from enjoying life, it’s time to get help from the allergists at Breathe Clear Institute. Our medical professionals will treat you with a holistic approach, determined to get to the bottom of your allergy symptoms and present the right treatment plan. Our clinic is equipped with tools for allergy testing, immunotherapy, and other ENT services. Schedule your appointment today and start experiencing the joys of summer once again.

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Tips for Coping with Spring Allergies

Tips for Coping with Spring Allergies

For many, spring provides sweet relief from the cold, dark, germ-infested winter. But for seasonal allergy sufferers, spring unleashes a miserable spiral of sneezing, coughing, itching, and sniffing. As plants become green and bright again, they release pollen into the air, triggering allergies for about 50 million Americans. The immune system mistakes the pollen for a dangerous foreign object, attacks it with antibodies, and releases histamines into the blood. It’s that chemical release that launches those bothersome allergy symptoms.

Researchers aren’t exactly sure why some of us experience allergies but they suspect it’s a combination of genetic and environmental factors. We are hopeful for a cure in the future, but in the meantime, here are some helpful tips on how to manage seasonal allergies.

Use an Antihistamine

Antihistamines work by blocking your body’s response to allergens. They’re ideal for sneezing, runny noses, watery eyes, and itchiness. There are a variety of OTC oral antihistamines and it could take some trial and error before you find the right one. Some are known to cause drowsiness and aren’t suitable for daytime use. Intranasal antihistamines are also available by prescription.

Try a Nasal Spray

A nasal spray may be the best option for targeting congestion and sinus drip. The following options are available OTC:

Corticosteroids

Intranasal corticosteroids, such as fluticasone, are some of the most effective OTC treatments for allergic rhinitis. They can take a couple of days or weeks to work, but you can use them long-term with little to no side effects. Many choose to use corticosteroids in conjunction with antihistamines for a broad-spectrum treatment.

Saline Sprays

Saline sprays and nose drops are a safe, natural alternative to allergy medications. Sodium chloride and purified water clear the sinuses of pollen and moisturize your nasal passages if they feel dry, raw, or itchy. Higher concentrations of sodium chloride can also temporarily help with congestion.

Nasal Decongestants

Nasal decongestant sprays, such as oxymetazoline, can immediately relieve nasal congestion for up to 12 hours. Sound like a dream? Not so fast. A decongestant spray is a powerful congestion fighter with one caveat: it can only be used short term. Using it for more than a few days can cause a rebound effect, resulting in worse or prolonged congestion. So save that spray for those extra bad days.

Irrigate Your Sinuses

Many find relief from regularly irrigating their sinuses. You can find pressurized cans of saline, traditional neti pots, and even machines designed to force salinated water through your nasal passages. The saline will typically go in through one nostril and then out the other, pushing pollen, dust, and mold spores out. It also clears away mucus and keeps your sinuses moisturized.

Nasal irrigation is generally considered safe, as long as you’re using purified water with an appropriate amount of sodium chloride. Tap water could contain harmful amoebas and not using the correct amount of sodium chloride will result in burning and discomfort.

Take a Decongestant

Oral decongestants are another OTC option for victims of congestion. Pseudoephedrine is the most widely available option and does alleviate congestion for many people. Some oral antihistamines even include pseudoephedrine to broaden the symptom relief in a single pill. 

Oral decongestants, however, aren’t for everyone and can have serious side effects. Since they are stimulants and work by narrowing blood vessels in your nose, they can potentially narrow blood vessels in other parts of your body, as well. Long-term use can increase your risk for high blood pressure, elevated heart rates, nervousness, and sleeplessness. 

Use Eye Drops

Dry, itchy eyes? Try eye drops. Gentle, hydrating eye drops can provide relief from dryness and redness. But if your eyes are distractingly itchy, you can give allergy eye drops a whirl. Equipped with antihistamines and redness relievers, these drops target eye allergies at their source. 

Filter the Air

When spring has sprung, pollen is in the air. Aside from keeping your windows shut, you can help minimize allergen exposure by using filters. Replace your regular HVAC filters with HEPA ones, specially designed to filter out allergens. You can also use an external air purifier to “scrub” the air. And when you’re out and about, wear a NIOSH-rated 95 filter pollen mask.

Regularly Clean Fabrics 

Pollen, dust, and mold spores love to cling to fabric. Make sure to regularly clean your shoes, clothes, and bedding. If possible, remove carpet and drapes from your home or vacuum them daily. Though these tasks are time-consuming, the benefits will pay off.

Avoid Your Triggers

Do you know what you’re allergic to? If not, you need to find out. Schedule an appointment with an allergist to have an allergy test done. Once you identify your triggers, you can make plans to avoid them. Maybe you’ll need to remove those lilies from your garden. Or perhaps you’ll know to stay inside when the grass is cut.

Try Immunotherapy

When you’ve exhausted all other options, immunotherapy may be worth a “shot.” Also called allergy shots, immunotherapy works by exposing you to your allergy trigger in small doses over time until your immune system learns to fight it on its own. You’ll typically see an allergy doctor regularly for these injections until you see full results. For those with needle phobias, mouth drops are available, as well.

Breathe Clear Institute Will Help You Cope with Spring Allergies

Managing your allergy symptoms can be overwhelming. We’re blessed with so many treatment options these days but all those choices can cause confusion. The medical professionals at Breathe Clear Institute will treat you with a holistic approach, determined to get to the bottom of your allergy symptoms and present the right treatment plan. Our clinic is equipped with tools for allergy testing, immunotherapy, and other ENT services. Schedule your appointment today.

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Spring Allergy Symptoms

Spring Allergy Symptoms

The winter is over. Cold and flu season is coming to a close. You make the mistake of tossing out your tissues and rejoice under the canopy of budding trees and colorful flowers. And then — achoo! It hits you: springtime allergies.

Though seasonal allergies aren’t contagious, they are a growing problem for the United States. Collecting data from allergists and ENT doctors, the ACAAI estimates that 50 million Americans suffer from allergies each year. Seasonal allergens are the most common cause, plaguing allergy sufferers from March through June. When plants disperse pollen, your immune system can mistake it as a danger and attack it with antibodies. This triggers a histamine release in the blood, causing one or more of the following spring allergy symptoms:

Eye Allergy Symptoms

Histamines are known for causing swelling and inflammation. Often, this can happen in your eyes, resulting in one of these symptoms:

Watery Eyes

Sometimes it’s a glassy feeling and other times it’s a full-on waterworks.

Itchy Eyes

Itchiness usually occurs in the corners and lower eye region. You will likely also experience redness and inflamed blood vessels. 

Allergic Shiners

Congestion of small blood vessels will create a bruised-like appearance under the eyes. The skin will look bluish and puffy.

Sinus Allergy Symptoms

Sinus and upper respiratory allergy symptoms are often what people think of when they hear “spring allergies.” These seasonal allergy symptoms are also called allergic rhinitis or hay fever. They include: 

Sneezing

When you breathe pollen in through the nose, your body’s natural defense to this invader is to dispel it with force. Sneezing is your body’s way of eliminating the enemy.

Congestion

As mentioned before, histamines can cause inflammation. And when pollen enters the nose, the allergic response is often to swell up the vessels in your sinuses. This can make you feel stuffy and cause pressure in your face.

Itchy, Runny Nose

Remember, your body is trying to eliminate the enemy. One of the ways it does this is to trap it with mucus. Excess mucus production will cause your nose to itch and run. 

Sore Throat

As your body fights off pollen with mucus, it will probably start to drip into your throat. Postnasal drip will irritate your throat, making it sore or scratchy.

Lower Respiratory Allergy Symptoms

Your lower respiratory system involves your larynx, bronchial tubes, and lungs (to name a new). None of these parts are immune to the wrath of your seasonal allergies. Lower respiratory allergies can cause the following symptoms:

Coughing 

As mucus drips into your throat, it could make its way into your lower respiratory tract. Your body will produce coughing to keep the mucus out of your lungs. 

Asthma

If wheezing, shortness of breath, and chest tightness occupancy the coughing, you could have asthma. Allergic reactions can trigger asthma attacks, resulting in inflammation of the airways.

Head Allergy Symptoms

Sinus dripping from spring allergies can also impact your head:

Headaches

It may feel like a dull ache in your head or a tightness in your face. A backup of sinus fluid can cause pressure, leading to sinus headaches.

Clogged Ears

Everything in your face is connected. If you experience congestion in your sinuses and head, you can feel it in your ears, too.

Skin Allergy Symptoms

When you encounter allergy symptoms on your skin, it’s often referred to as eczema. Though there are many different kinds of eczema with unique causes, there are two common types of allergy-induced eczema:

Contact Dermatitis

When your skin comes in direct contact with an allergen, it can produce a localized rash. This rash may be red, itchy, or bumpy.

Atopic Dermatitis 

When the allergic skin reaction occurs on random parts throughout the body, it’s probably atopic dermatitis. This type of eczema is often more generalized and it’s harder to pinpoint the exact trigger. It’s common in babies and children but it also affects about 3% of adults.

Let Breathe Clear Manage Your Spring Allergy Symptoms

You can treat minor seasonal allergies with OTC antihistamines, nasals sprays, and nasal rinses. But it’s not uncommon for allergy sufferers to fail at managing their symptoms. At Breathe Clear Institute, we can help you identify your triggers and develop a plan to manage them. Though there’s no known cure for allergies, our doctors can help you tackle the symptoms. From allergy testing to allergy shots, Breathe Clear Institute will find an allergy treatment for you.

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Common Allergens in the Fall

Common Allergens in the Fall and How to Find Relief

Fall is synonymous with leaves changing colors, birds migrating, shorter days, and a drop in temperature. This season also triggers allergies in many people. Allergies are the immune system’s reaction to a foreign substance. Reactions can occur if a substance enters the body or if you come in contact with it. Seasonal allergies happen, well, during certain seasons and are typically the result of environmental allergens. Learn about the common allergens in the fall and how to find relief with the medical team at Breathe Clear Institute. 

Triggers of Allergies

With over 50 million Americans suffering from allergies each year, determining the triggers is critical. People often experience reactions due to the following allergens: pollen, mold, and dust mites. 

Pollen

One of the most common allergens in the fall is pollen, with ragweed being the main culprit. Pollen is a powder created by trees, grasses, and plants. Carried by wind, pollen fertilizes other plants, but when people breathe in pollen, they can experience various allergy symptoms. Ragweed grows all over the United States and blooms during the fall months. 

Mold  

Mold is a fungus that grows where moisture is present. Unfortunately, it can be found in both indoor and outdoor environments. Outside, mold spores can be found on damp leaves that can then be tracked into people’s homes. Areas that have high humidity allow mold to thrive. 

Dust Mites

Another common type of allergen in the fall is dust mites. What are dust mites? Dust mites are microscopic pests that live in house dust. They feed on dead skin and are most commonly found in bedding, carpet, curtains, furniture, and more. 

Symptoms  

Symptoms associated with the aforementioned allergens include sneezing, congestion, runny nose, postnasal drip, itchy and watery eyes, coughing, wheezing, and throat irritation. 

Ways to Prevent Allergens in the Fall  

Alleviating allergy symptoms can be done in a number of ways. To relieve allergies related to pollen, it is important to remove shoes before entering your home as well change into a new pair of clothing. Keeping an eye out on the pollen counts is also a good way to reduce symptoms. To prevent allergies from mold, we recommend purchasing a dehumidifier if the inside of your home is rather humid, invest in HEPA filters, and be mindful when outside. Dust mites can be reduced by regularly washing bedding, placing dust-proof covers over pillows and mattresses, and vacuuming frequently. 

Contact Breathe Clear to Schedule an Appointment for Relief

If you are suffering from allergies during the fall and can’t seem to get rid of your symptoms, contact the professional team at Breathe Clear Institute. During your appointment, we will diagnose your allergy symptoms after undergoing a detailed assessment. An allergy test may be ordered depending on our findings. At Breathe Clear, we perform allergy drops as well as allergy shots once we get to the root of the issue. Helping you get the relief you need and deserve is our priority. We will work with you to choose the treatment option that will best fit your needs. For questions or to book an appointment, please call us or fill out the contact form available at our website.

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How Does Allergy Testing Work?

How Does Allergy Testing Work? 

Over 50 million Americans suffer from allergies each year, with billions of dollars spent on over-the-counter treatments and medications. An allergy is a reaction to a foreign substance. Individuals can experience seasonal allergies as well as ones they have to manage every day. Symptoms of allergies may include sneezing, an itchy, runny, stuffy nose, watery or itchy eyes, a rash, wheezing, shortness of breath, swelling, and more. The most severe type of allergic reaction is anaphylaxis, which can be life-threatening. Learn about common allergens, the allergy testing process, and treatment plans with the knowledgeable team at Breathe Clear Institute. 

Common Allergens

People can experience many different types of allergies. Some common types of allergies are due to food, drugs, and the environment. Food-related allergies are often caused by eggs, wheat, shellfish, soy, milk, tree nuts, peanuts, and fish. Triggers of allergic reactions to drugs include antibiotics, including penicillin and sulfa drugs. Environmental factors can cause allergies and include pollen, mold, dust, grasses, and trees. Additional common allergy-triggering culprits include pet dander, dust mites, and cockroaches.

Allergy Testing Process 

While some may find it easy to identify their triggers, it may be more difficult to diagnose others. A person could be allergic to something without even knowing it. To get a better understanding of what a person is allergic to and to best treat their symptoms, a skin allergy test may be ordered. At Breathe Clear Institute, we begin with a detailed assessment, focusing on allergy triggers such as pollen, molds, animal dander, and foods. We test for 40 allergens at the same time. Bumps on the skin will determine whether or not a person is allergic. The process takes about 1 hour and a patient may experience itchiness. In order for the skin test to be accurate, a patient is asked to avoid taking antihistamines 3-7 days before testing occurs. Once the allergens are identified, we will discuss treatment options. 

Treatment Plans

First, it is important to try to avoid or eliminate the allergens that are triggering a reaction. For some, medications will be helpful, while others may undergo immunotherapy. Allergy drops are customized to the patient and work over time to reduce the immune system’s overreaction to allergens by desensitizing their system. Allergy shots are another option that slowly increases the resistance to allergens in order to reduce symptoms and improve quality of life. 

Schedule an Appointment With Breathe Clear to Determine if Allergy Testing Is Right for You

If you are experiencing uncomfortable symptoms that may be caused by an allergen, it is important to seek medical attention to get relief and live a healthy life. At Breathe Clear, our allergist will get to the root of the issue and recommend a treatment that is tailored specifically to you. If left untreated, allergies can continue to get worse and affect your long term health. 
The healthcare professionals at Breathe Clear are ready to provide you with the best care possible and make sure that all of your medical needs are met. To schedule an appointment, please contact us via phone or complete the contact form available on our website

What Are Symptoms of Allergies?

Looking At Symptoms of Allergies 

Before we explore the different symptoms of allergies, it is important to define what an allergy is. An allergy is a reaction to a foreign substance. It can affect people of all ages and can show up later in life. The type of allergy a person has will determine what symptoms they will experience. Once the allergen and associated symptoms are identified, you are then able to take control of your allergies and improve your quality of life. 

Common Allergy Symptoms 

The most common are related to food, environmental and drug allergies. 

Food Allergies 

Food allergies occur when the immune system reacts to a certain food that was consumed. There are IgE mediated and non-IgE mediated food allergies. IgE mediated food allergies occur when IgE antibodies created by the body’s immune system react to a certain food, while non-IgE mediated does not involve antibodies. The vast majority of food allergies are caused by shellfish, wheat, egg, soy, milk, peanuts, tree nuts, and fish. Depending on the severity of the reaction, symptoms may include itchy and watery eyes, congestion, runny nose, itchy ears, rash, inflammation, wheezing, vomiting, and swelling of the throat. 

Environmental Allergies 

Environmental allergies are a response to allergens in the environment. Common allergens include weeds, trees, dust mites, dander, mold, and grasses. Symptoms associated with environmental allergies include runny nose, sneezing, difficulty breathing, and itching. 

Drug Allergies 

Lastly, many people find that they are allergic to certain medications. Some medications that are common triggers are antibiotics, primarily penicillin based medications and sulfa drugs.  Additional triggers are  drugs used for chemotherapy, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, and anticonvulsants. Symptoms include but are not limited to itching, rash, difficulty breathing, swelling, and anaphylaxis. 

Yes, Allergies Can Cause Skin Symptoms

Is your skin irritated or itchy? There is a possibility that it is the result of an allergy.  All the major classes of allergies – food, environmental and drug – can cause problems with the skin.  Common allergic skin conditions include eczema, hives, angioedema (swelling), and contact dermatitis. Skin allergy symptoms include itching, redness, swelling, bumps, blisters, and dry, scaly skin. 

Get Your Allergies Diagnosed By An Allergist at Breathe Clear 

If you are wondering what you may be allergic to, we recommend undergoing allergy testing. At Breathe Clear, we test for environmental and food allergens at the same time. After refraining from antihistamines and certain other medications, we will conduct a skin test to identify any sensitivities. If you are sensitive to an allergen, a bump will appear on your skin, similar to that of a mosquito bite. In some cases, a blood allergy test may be necessary as well.  From there we will create a treatment plan designed specifically for you. You can receive immunotherapy through allergy drops or allergy shots. Allergy drops are placed under your tongue on a daily basis wherever you are.  Allergy shots are first performed in the office and in most cases can be taken home after about 6 months.  Both types of immunotherapy – sublingual and injectable – are intended to work over time to desensitize your body to the allergens that provoke your symptoms and significantly improve your quality of life.    Get relief from your allergy symptoms today by contacting the leading allergist at Breathe Clear Institute in Torrance.

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Why Won’t My Allergies Go Away?

Reasons Why Your Allergies Are Persisting 

Allergies affect more than 50 million Americans. Common symptoms include sneezing, runny nose, nasal congestion, itchy, watery eyes, rashes, shortness of breath, and more. These occur as a result of your immune system responding to a foreign substance, better known as an allergen. Taking control of your allergies can sometimes prove to be difficult, especially without a proper diagnosis. If you are suffering from the uncomfortable symptoms associated with allergies, it’s time to look into the various reasons why your symptoms are persisting and how to improve them with the professionals at Breathe Clear Institute. 

Poor Indoor Air Quality 

Many do not realize that the air quality in your home can greatly affect your health. Some indoor allergens include dust mites, pet dander, and mold. To reduce indoor allergens, it is important to clean your home often. If you have an HVAC system, don’t forget to clean your air ducts to avoid allergens from circulating throughout your home. Avoid humidity in your home as it attracts insects and mold thrives in this type of environment. For those households with someone allergic to dust mites, we recommend investing in special mattress and pillow protectors to act as a shield against dust mites.  We also recommend washing bedding frequently. 

Unknown Triggers 

It is possible that you are not entirely sure what is triggering your allergy symptoms, which is why they are not going away. Allergy triggers include pollen, molds, animal dander, and food. If you are unable to identify the trigger on your own, it is best to see an allergist who will complete a detailed assessment in order to determine what is causing your allergies. From there, a skin test or blood test may be recommended to be able to create a treatment plan. At Breathe Clear, we test for 40 different allergens at the same time, which include environmental and food allergens. 

Poor Response to Medication 

People often try to treat allergy symptoms on their own by taking antihistamines or using nasal sprays. Unfortunately, these do not always work for everyone, which is why making an appointment with an allergist is crucial to determine the best treatment option for you. 

Lifestyle 

The things we love the most can very well be the reason we suffer from allergy symptoms. Your pet who you love and adore can be the cause of your sneezing and nasal congestion. Playing an outdoor sport that you enjoy can result in a rash due to the grass. Your lifestyle could be the reason you can’t get rid of your allergies for good. Luckily, there are ways to treat your allergies so that you can continue to live your life fully.  At Breathe Clear, we offer immunotherapy through allergy shots and allergy drops. 

Make an Appointment to Treat Your Allergies

Do not let your allergy symptoms control you. If you would like to get relief from your allergies and receive the most effective treatment option for long-term health and wellness, contact Breathe Clear today to schedule an appointment. Our team seeks to alleviate suffering from the conditions that affect your quality of life and is dedicated to providing you with the best experience possible.

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