Updated On :

What is an Allergy?

An allergy is what happens when your body’s immune response reacts to any sort of foreign particles (allergens).  Allergens could be in the form of pollen, foods, dust mites, pets, insects, ticks, moulds or even medications. An allergic reaction can cause coughing, sneezing, itchy eye, runny nose or a sore throat. When severe, it could cause rashes, hives, low blood pressure, breathing difficulty or even death. 

 What happens during an allergy attack?

When you come into contact with any substance that you’re allergic to, the allergen triggers an antibody response in your body. The antibodies stick to the mast cells in your body and when the allergen reacts with these antibodies, the mast cells produce histamines. When histamines are released, it causes irritation or inflammation and can make you uncomfortable. 


What are the different kinds of allergies?

  1. Drug Allergy- When you experience side effects to certain medicines. 
  2. Food Allergy- allergic reactions to foods occurs when you develop intolerance to certain foods like peanuts, dairy products, etc.
  3. Insect Allergy- the sting of insects like bees, wasps or hornets can cause allergic reactions.
  4. Latex allergy- when you are allergic to natural rubber latex products like gloves, balloons, condoms, etc.
  5. Mold Allergy- Occurs when you develop allergies due to fungi grown in your environment.
  6. Pet Allergy- pets with furs including cats and dogs can trigger allergic reactions.
  7. Pollen Allergy- caused by one of the most common triggers of seasonal allergies, pollen grains.

How are allergies treated?

Treatment options include

  • Antihistamines
  • Intranasal Corticosteroid Nasal Sprays (INCS)
  • Combined therapies including INCS and antihistamines
  • Adrenaline (epinephrine)
  • Medication eye drops
  • Non-medicated treatments using saline sprays 
  • Allergen immunotherapy

Table of Contents

Bangerth [CC BY-SA 3.0 (]
Hives 2

Updated On :