If you have allergies, instead of looking forward to spring and summer, you might be dreading it. The increased pollen can make you miserable. If you suffer from allergies, a visit to your allergist is just what you need.
Allergens are substances you are allergic to. Some of the most common allergen exposure occurs during the spring and summer, including exposure to:
- Plants and trees
- Grasses and shrubs
- Flower and weed pollen
Other allergens occur all year long and can cause allergy symptoms continuously. These allergens include:
- Mold and spores
- Dust and dust mites
- Pet dander and fur
Your first step toward getting relief from allergies and having a better quality of life is to have allergy testing.
Common allergy testing methods include:
Skin tests, which involve injecting small amounts of allergen under the skin and watching for a positive reaction including redness, swelling, or a rash.
Challenge tests, which involve inhaling or ingesting a small amount of food or medication and waiting for a positive reaction.
Blood tests, which involve sending a small amount of your blood to a laboratory where it is tested against multiple allergens.
When you know what you are allergic to, you can try to avoid the allergen. If avoiding the allergen is difficult or not possible, there are several allergy treatments to help you get relief. Your allergist may recommend:
- Allergy shots to decrease or eliminate symptoms when you are exposed to an allergen
- Sublingual immunotherapy, which are drops placed under the tongue to lessen or eliminate symptoms when you are exposed to an allergen.
If you have breathing difficulties or asthma associated with allergies, your allergist may also recommend:
- Inhaled medications to provide short term relief during a crisis
- Long term asthma management medications
Don’t suffer from allergies when relief is just a phone call away. To find out more about the benefits of allergy testing and how it can improve your quality of life, talk with your allergist today.