An allergic reaction is a sign that your immune system is hypersensitive: it interprets what you've eaten or a plant you've come into contact with as a threat to your body, so it begins to send histamine, a chemical compound, to remove the threat by increasing mucus and blood flow. The result is an allergic reaction: sneezing, itching, even vomiting. To control these reactions, Dr. Christine Gilliam, physician at Everyone's ENT & Sinus Center in San Antonio, TX, must know what causes them. Allergy testing is the best way to discover what triggers your specific immune response; we've listed a few of the most common allergens here.
It's a common misconception that an animal's hair or fur is what causes many people to sneeze and itch upon coming into contact. In fact, as your allergist will tell you, it's actually a hypersensitivity to proteins in the bodily fluid or skin of certain animals. The allergens from cats, dogs and horses typically come from their saliva or dander (flakes of dead skin), while guinea pigs, rabbits and hamsters carry allergens in the proteins contained in their urine. Bird allergies are less common, but it's the dander under their feathers that's the culprit for most people. Allergy testing at Everyone's ENT & Sinus Center will determine which, if any, animals cause your allergies to flare up.
Almost anything that grows - grass, weeds, trees, even mold can all set off allergic reactions, particularly in the warmer spring and summer months when they release pollen or spores into the air for reproductive purposes. An allergy test from Dr. Gilliam will help to pinpoint which of San Antonio's flora is responsible for your sneezing, watery eyes and itchy nose.
The allergic reactions to food are typically different than environmental or pet allergies; hives, tingling in the throat or mouth, and swelling of the lips, tongue and or face are more common. Some food allergies are severe, causing anaphylaxis, an extreme reaction which often affects breathing and can be life threatening. Some of the most notorious foods that show up on allergy tests include milk, nuts, fish, eggs and wheat.
Allergies can be controlled by avoiding triggers and medication. To schedule an allergy test with Dr. Christine Gilliam, contact Everyone's ENT & Sinus Center in San Antonio, TX. We look forward to helping you solve this mystery and improve your life!