Medicalook
Medicalook

Allergic reactions

http://www.medicalook.com
E-mail this E-mail this     Print Print this    
Allergic reactions can range from mild to life threatening, and can be brought on by anything that a particular body does not recognize as “suitable” or “friendly” to the body. Substances known as allergens instruct the body to attempt either expel the allergen or to shut off specific functions to protect the body from the effects of the allergen. While the substance may not truly be harmful, the body believes that it is and thus will react accordingly. Allergens can enter the body through the skin, the lungs, the digestive tract, or through an injection such as medication allergies or allergies to insect venom.

ALLERGIC REACTIONS SYMPTOMS

Allergic reactions are quite common, and most people have them to some degree. Mild symptoms may include itching, sneezing, occasionally nausea, a feeling of restlessness or urgency on the skin or in the body, or rashes, hives, runny nose, congestion, or red and watery eyes. Severe symptoms can lead to death if not treated immediately. Life threatening symptoms are typically called anaphylactic shock, and require immediate emergency medical attention. Anaphylactic allergic reactions include symptoms such as swelling, particularly around the face, closing of the throat, swelling of the tongue, severe hives, and difficulty breathing. The heart may beat either very fast or very slow, depending on the reactions.
Allergic reactions
Image: Allergic reactions

ALLERGIC REACTIONS CAUSES

While it is not clear what causes one person to be allergic to a substance while another is not, there are some common causes of allergic reactions that many people share, although a person can be allergic to just about anything. Allergens such as plants, pollen, mold, and animal dander are among the most common and usually cause irritation without life threatening symptoms, except in cases of some people with severe asthma or other chronic breathing difficulties. Cigarette smoke, or any smoke, is also a very common cause of allergic reactions. Food allergens such as peanuts, milk, nuts, and shellfish are not uncommon. While not as common, allergies to insect venom or bee sting venom can be quite severe, and often fatal.

ALLERGIC REACTIONS RISK FACTOR

There aren’t many determining risk factors that influence whether or not one person experiences allergic reactions and another doesn’t. Sometimes members of the same family experience allergic reactions, although it doesn’t appear that genetics play a serious role in allergic reactions because family members are often not allergic to the same. Some family members are allergic to one allergen and have mild reactions while another might be deathly allergic to a different allergen.

Allergies
Image: Allergies


Medication allergies and allergic reactions brought on by chemical introduction can be fatal. Symptoms may include wheezing, tightness in the chest, facial swelling, hives, and difficulty breathing. Medication allergens are typically treated in a hospital setting due to their potential for a lethal outcome.

Anxiety can make allergic reactions much worse. Airway constriction can be lessened by loosening tight clothing and laying the individual down on the ground or floor. Pulse rate and breathing rate should be monitored until help can arrive.

ALLERGIC REACTIONS DIAGNOSIS

Diagnosing allergic reactions are based mostly on symptom complaints. When a patient present with specific complaints or symptoms, whether severe or mild, most physicians can diagnose an allergic reaction. However, narrowing down the specific allergen which the individual is allergic to may take a skin test or a blood test. Skin test require a mild scratching of the skin with a needle dipped in specific allergens, placed in a grid along the back. The scratches that the skin reacts to are indicators of an allergic reaction. Blood tests can often reveal other allergens that are not able to be determined by a skin test.


Once an allergic reaction is identified, the patient then needs to avoid the potential for more allergic attacks. Often removing allergens from the environment can help, as well as purifying the air, restricting the diet, and perhaps preventing pets from entering the bedroom, or in extreme cases finding pets a new home. Medications can be either prescribed or purchased over the counter to help alleviate symptoms of allergic reactions.

Many patients choose to go through a series of allergy shots to help alleviate allergic reactions when possible. Allergy shots are a gradually increasing dose that introduces that allergen into the bloodstream, which in turn often helps the patient develop a higher tolerance level. Antihistamines are often recommended for the day the shots are given. Allergy shots are a time commitment, which can mean one shot per week for as long as five years.
  Member Comments

Medication commonly used for these disease:

drugs Allergic reactions drugs