Many people have an allergy to something. It happens when the immune system reacts to an external factor that is usually nonthreatening. The body produces antibodies to attack these foreign substances even though they’re not truly harmful, and the antibodies create an allergic reaction.
Different allergens can trigger different allergic reactions. Let’s talk about some of the most common reasons why people have allergic reactions and what you can do about them:
Allergies to Food
We all rely on food for nutrition and sustenance. However, some individuals are allergic to certain foods, such as peanuts, tomatoes, chicken, shellfish, and eggs.
However, a food allergy should not be confused with a food intolerance. One common type of food intolerance is the inability to digest lactose in milk products, which is due to an enzyme deficiency and not due to an immune response.
The symptoms of an allergic reaction to food include the following:
- Rashes or hives on the skin
- Itchiness in the mouth, throat, lips, and tongue
- Swelling of the tongue, lips, or the whole face
- Shortness of breath
- Difficulty swallowing
- Stomach cramps
- Nausea or vomiting
The severity of the reaction can range from mild to severe, and a severe reaction can lead to anaphylactic shock – which can be fatal. Because of the potential danger that it can pose, laws require manufacturers to print warnings on food labels of even trace amounts of common food allergens.
Another type of allergic reaction is atopic dermatitis, or eczema. This reaction results in cracked skin that is itchy, swollen, and red. Blisters may also form. Commonly affected areas of the body are the elbows, knees, and cheeks.
Experts have not pinpointed the exact cause of atopic dermatitis. However, certain factors may be involved, such as genetics, environmental aspects, and dysfunction of the immune system.
Some of the most common allergens that cause eczema are as follows:
- Topical creams or ointments
Allergic Rhinitis (Hay Fever)
The most common type of allergy is hay fever. People often experience it during the spring due to the pollen in the air.
The seasonality of the reaction depends on the allergen. When pollen is the main culprit behind the allergic reaction, people experience seasonal rhinitis.
Symptoms of hay fever include:
- Nasal congestion
- Runny nose
- Itchiness of the nose or entire face
- Swelling of the eyelids
Urgent Care for Allergic Reactions in Greater Fort Worth, Texas
Some people outgrow their allergies, some people develop them later in life, and others must be careful around certain allergens during their entire lifetime. Understanding your condition is vital to know how to avoid developing a severe reaction.
EMC Express Care is an urgent care center that can provide you with the medical care you need during an allergic attack. Located in North Richland Hills, our well-trained medical team is ready to provide a quick diagnosis and fast treatment that works for you.
If you have any questions, call us today at (817) 503-8800. We look forward to seeing you here.