An allergy occurs when your immune system identifies a certain object as harmful and reacts to it. Usually strong symptoms are triggered in people who are sensitive to these objects (also known as allergens). You may develop allergic reactions from food, animals, dust, and when the season changes.
Here we explore some of the allergy types and their symptoms.
- Pollen Allergies
Pollen allergy occurs when individuals who are hypersensitive to airborne pollen such as the pollen of trees, grasses, and weeds are exposed to these tiny particles. Signs and symptoms seen in some people during pollen season include –
- Red, watery, and itchy eyes
- Coughing and wheezing
- Irritation in throat
- A runny nose
Often, the pollens can irritate your bronchi causing allergic Bronchitis.
- Dust Allergy
A speck of dust may contain dust mites, pet dander, mold spores, dust mites, and dead skin – all of them are common allergy triggers.
Dust mites is one of the common causes of indoor allergies, and exposure to it can cause asthma and flu-like symptoms such as
- Red, teary, and itchy eyes
- Stuffy or a runny nose
One of the best ways to prevent dust allergy symptoms is to limit your exposure to dust. Dust mites often accumulate in couches, mattresses, and beddings. Wash them regularly in very hot water.
- Milk Allergy
This is not the same as lactose intolerance (which happens when you cannot digest lactose – a type of sugar found in dairy products). Milk allergy occurs when your body thinks that milk or any dairy product is a foreign invader and starts reacting by releasing Histamine. The symptoms of milk allergy include:
Avoid these food items:
Dairy products (cheese, ice cream, butter, and pudding).
Food items that contain cow milk protein such as coffee creamers, donuts, margarine, chewing gum, and cake mix.
Important note: Always check the labels before buying.
- Casein Allergy
If drinking milk or eating milk products causes swollen lips and itchy skin, then you might be allergic to Casein, a type of protein found in milk. People are also allergic to Whey, another milk protein.
The symptoms include:
- Wheezing, nasal congestion, itchy eyes, coughing, and runny nose
- Swelling of lips, mouth, throat, tongue, and face
- Skin issues like rashes, itchy and reddish skin
- Allergic Reaction to Insect Bites
Insect stings often trigger allergic reactions in some individuals. The reactions are usually of three types:
- It can be a normal reaction accompanied by pain, redness, and swelling
- It can be a large localised reaction causing swelling that goes beyond the particular spot where you were bitten.
- A serious reaction causing wheezing, increased pulse rate, red and itchy hives, swelling of the throat, face, and mouth, dizziness, and anxiety. In such cases, rush to the doctor immediately.
In less serious cases, you may notice symptoms such as:
- Redness in the affected area
- Pimple-like dots and spots
- Feeling of warmth in that area
- Contact Dermatitis
It’s a red, itchy rash caused when a person is directly in contact with an irritant. Irritants include:
- Hair dyes and other chemicals in cosmetics
- Latex rubber
- Fragrances in shampoos and soaps
- Nickel (mostly found in jewellery and belt buckles)
The symptoms may include:
- Tenderness in the affected area
- Itchy skin
- Redness and rash
- Burning-like sensation
Apart from these symptoms, many may show signs of fatigue and headache.
Any kind of allergic reaction affects a person’s physical and emotional well-being. It’s therefore important for patients to receive proper treatment and take preventive measures including environmental control.
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