Allergic Reactions

Most people have or might have some problem with allergies or allergic reactions at some point in their lives. Allergic reactions are sensitivities to substances, called allergens that are contacted through the skin, inhaled into the lungs, swallowed. They can vary from mild and annoying to sudden and life-threatening. Some allergic reactions can be evident after several hours, but some of them appear within seconds or minutes after exposure to the allergen. Reactions can occur in one spot, such as a small skin rash or itchy eyes, or all over, as in a whole body rash.

An allergic reaction is actually the body’s way of responding to an “invader”, so the immune system starts fighting substances that seem to attack the body. Among the most common allergens are dust or dust mites, pollen, plants, medicine, certain foods, insect venoms, animal dander, viruses , or bacteria. Some people may be allergic to your pet’s dead skin dander, urine, dried saliva, or hair. Some develop allergic reactions after repeated contact with latex, especially latex gloves.

In most cases allergic reactions are a result of eating specific food or better to say the food fragments. For example, proteins, being not broken down by the heat of cooking or by stomach acids or enzymes that digest food can be responsible for an allergic reaction.

There are a number of foods which appear to cause allergic reactions in most of the cases. They are: shellfish such as shrimp, crayfish, lobster, and crab; nuts such as walnuts or peanuts, fish and eggs. A doctor diagnoses a food allergy only when a patient has a positive skin test to a specific allergen and the history of these reactions indicates an allergy to the same food.

In cases of being allergic to food, medications can be taken only after people have ingested a food to which they are allergic, but not before eating a certain food in order to prevent an allergic reaction to it.

However, most allergic reactions cannot be cured, but if they are mild, even simple home treatment can ease the symptoms. Usually, people can avoid most of the things to which they are sensitive if they read food labels carefully and refuse from restaurant-prepared foods that might contain ingredients to which they are allergic.