Allergies are one of the most common ailments. This can happen to anyone, at any time, and at any place. As long as allergens are present in the environment, you are susceptible to an allergy attack.
But what happens during an allergy attack? Is it dangerous? Can it be treated? Furthermore, what can you do to prevent further allergic reactions?
Understanding Allergy Attack
Allergens come in many forms. It can be from the pollens during spring, dust mites in the air, spores from mold and mildew, a bite from a bee or a spider, or even from something you ate. There really are a lot of allergens, but most of them affect the body the same way.
Before anything else though, you have to understand that an allergic reaction is the body’s way of defending itself from an allergen, a defense mechanism, so to speak. Allergens, as mentioned earlier, are found just about anywhere. When allergens enter the body, they are immediately sensed as a threat, of course. To defend itself, the immune system is triggered, sending white blood cells to the site to attack the allergen. White blood cells are the body’s defenders against invading organisms, and they create antibodies, specifically IgE antibodies, that attack the allergen. Now when these IgE antibodies attack the irritant, they release chemicals including histamines. What these chemicals do is to further irritate the area, causing inflammation. By inflaming the affected area, the allergens will be pushed out or expelled from the body through sneezing, coughing, or breaking out in skin rashes or hives. Skin rashes are hot to the touch, and this can effectively flush away allergens. The immune system will only stop attacking the allergens once they are totally eliminated from the body.
When Does an Allergy Attack Become Dangerous?
Normally, allergy symptoms usually subside after a few minutes and immediately after the allergens are eliminated. However, there are some people who produce too much IgE antibodies during an allergic reaction that the effects of an allergy attack become life-threatening. Instead of being localized, the effects become systemic, resulting to swelling and inflammation of the lungs and airways, swelling of the face and extremities, difficulty in breathing and swallowing, abdominal complaints like diarrhea, cramps, pain, and vomiting. It could also cause dizziness as well as mental confusion.
Treatment for Allergy Attack
The most common treatment for an allergy attack is antihistamine medications. These medications can arrest the effects of allergic reaction and prevent further complications. Other drugs include decongestants, steroids, corticosteroids, etc.
Preventing Further Allergy Attacks
Unfortunately, allergies are not curable, and the only way to make sure that you won’t suffer from another allergic attack is to avoid the allergens that trigger them. So avoid foods that trigger allergic reactions; remain indoors when the pollen count is too high; keep pets out of the house if you’re allergic to pet hair and dander; and make sure there are no pests such as cockroaches, spiders, ants, etc. inside your home.
If your home is pest-infested, then give your local pest control company a call. They can eliminate these pests for you. Getting rid of pests at home can help reduce your allergy attacks.