Recognise your allergy and take appropriate action to prevent the consequences
Different allergies can have similar symptoms, so it’s easy to mix up one allergy with another. When allergies are left untreated or are not well managed, it can lead to more serious problems such as asthma. Hay fever, for instance, is often confused with dust mite allergy or cat allergy because of the nature of its symptoms. The difference lies mainly in the consequences if it is not treated in time. In this blog, we explain what the consequences of an untreated allergy can be and how you can limit or even prevent these consequences.
What are the consequences of an untreated allergy?
Common allergy reactions include nasal blockage, a runny nose or burning eyes. It is also possible that some symptoms, such as breathing problems in asthma patients, are exacerbated by allergies. Allergic reactions can lead to sleep problems. A stuffy nose can make sleeping difficult, or even impossible. A lack of a good night's sleep can, in turn, affect your ability to concentrate during the day.
A poorly treated or an untreated allergy may lead to an increased risk of worsening of asthma symptoms in asthma patients. In the case of dust mite allergy, more than 40% of patients suffer from worsened symptoms. Although dust mite allergy often develops during the first years of life, it can be difficult to diagnose the allergy in infants and young children.
Is there anything I can do myself to alleviate my allergy symptoms?
Allergies cannot be prevented, but you can reduce the chance of an allergic reaction. For most allergies, avoiding contact with the allergen is the best solution, so it’s important to know which substance is causing the reaction. You can make an appointment with your doctor to get yourself tested. If you know what you are allergic to, the allergy can be treated timely and effectively. Here are some tips to make your allergy more bearable:
- Air your home daily;
- Avoid exposure to allergens (the substances that cause an allergic reaction) as much as possible;
- In case of a pet allergy, you should keep your pet out of your bedroom;
- Clean your home regularly;
- Wash duvets and curtains at 60 degrees;
- Purchase a hypoallergenic mattress;
- Damp mop floors daily;
- Run saltwater or a pre-made saline solution through your nasal passages;
- Put a cold, damp washcloth on your eyes to reduce redness and itching.
What are the forms of treatment?
Treatment options include:
- Reducing and preventing exposure to allergens;
- Managing the symptoms;
- Allergy immunotherapy, a treatment that treats the causes of allergic responses.
If it is not possible to avoid exposure to the substances to which you are allergic, you can ask your doctor to prescribe medication. There are medications that work throughout the body and those that provide local relief, such as:
- Rhinocort / Budesonide: relieves sensitivity in the nasal passages. This nasal spray also has an anti-inflammatory effect;
- Antihistamine, such as Promethazine: counteracts allergic reactions caused by histamine such as hay fever, allergic rhinitis and allergic skin reactions.
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