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With or without insurance, you can get a quick, personalized allergy test when it’s convenient for you.Read More
This 4-year-old recently ate some ice cream without having a reaction—did she outgrow her milk allergy?Read More
Everyone has their own unique combination of allergic triggers and not all of them are obvious.Read More
Anaphylaxis, also called anaphylactic shock, is an acute, life-threatening allergic reaction.Read More
Digestive and gastrointestinal issues are closely tied to what you eat.Read More
Does this 4-year-old run the risk of having a severe reaction to peanuts?Read More
Food allergies are the body’s immune system reacting to something that is normally harmless to most people–like milk or eggs.Read More
If you suspect allergies are the cause of your symptoms, it is important to consult with your healthcare professional to get properly diagnosed.Read More
There are options when it comes to testing to identify allergic triggers.Read More
After eating a bowl of fruit and nut cereal, this 8-year-old was covered in large hives—what caused her reaction?Read More
Get answers to some of the most common questions about allergy.Read More
You probably have questions about allergies and that’s why we’ve answered some of the most common questions below.
An allergy is when your immune system reacts to something that is harmless to most people. Generally, your immune system protects you from substances that can make you sick. But if you come into contact with something that your immune system views as a threat, it releases a chemical called histamine. This release of histamine and other substances is what causes allergy symptoms.
Hundreds of ordinary substances can cause—or trigger—an allergic reaction. Among the most common things that can cause reactions are plant pollen, food, an insect sting, mold, dust mites, pet dander and medications.
Anyone can be affected by allergies, but some are more prone to them than others. Genetic and environmental factors play a role in a person’s susceptibility to developing allergies. While allergies are common in children, they can occur for the first time at any age.
Some children stop reacting to allergens, like milk and egg, as they grow, but allergies to foods like nuts and fish tend to remain. It’s also possible to develop allergies at any age, even as an adult.
Many people confuse food allergies with a food intolerance. They have many similar symptoms, but they’re not the same thing, and the differences between the two are important. Food intolerances usually involve the digestive tract, with uncomfortable symptoms like bloating and cramping, but with no risk of anaphylaxis. However, food allergic reaction could be life-threatening, which makes avoiding the offending food extremely important.
If you are atopic, or have a predisposition toward developing allergic reactions, your body may produce an antibody called Immunoglobulin E (IgE) that is specific to what causes your allergic reactions. Immunoglobulin E (IgE) is a protective mechanism that is produced when you exposed to a substance that your body views as a threat. These tests measure the amount of IgE to that specific substance in your blood. Your specific IgE test results are as personal and unique as your fingerprint and your healthcare professional can use your results to identify any underlying allergic triggers that may be contributing to your symptoms. It is a simple blood test that is easier and less risky to perform than a Skin-Prick Test (SPT) or Oral Food Challenge (OFC).
Anyone experiencing allergy-like symptoms can receive specific IgE (sIgE) blood testing. For babies and very young children, one blood sample collection is often less traumatic than the several scratches of a skin-prick test (SPT).
Unlike a skin-prick test, a blood test can be performed on anyone no matter the condition of their skin—even during an eczema flare-up. A blood test can also be performed on someone while currently on medication, including antihistamines. It is also safe to perform on someone who is pregnant.
Asthma is a chronic (long-term) lung disease that inflames and narrows the airways. Asthma causes recurring periods of wheezing (a whistling sound when you breathe), chest tightness, shortness of breath, and coughing. The coughing often occurs at night or early in the morning.
Asthma and allergies often go hand-in-hand. The majority of people who have asthma suffer from allergies, too.1-3 Plus, allergies can trigger your asthma or make it worse. In fact, up to 90% of children and 60% of adults have allergies that may make their asthma worse.4,5 When allergies either trigger or worsen asthma, it’s known as allergic asthma or allergy-induced asthma.
Anyone, regardless of age, gender, race or socioeconomic status can be affected by asthma.
There is no cure for asthma, so your best defense is to learn if you have underlying triggers and then limit your exposure to them. And while there’s a strong connection between allergies and asthma, there are many other triggers to be aware of, too. Some of the most common non-allergenic triggers are cold or dry air, exercise, exposure to cigarette smoke or strong scents, the flu and other respiratory infections.
Yes. Reducing exposure to one or more of your allergic triggers may help reduce your symptoms. This can only be accomplished by working with your healthcare professional to understand your unique allergy profile.