Allergies are a common problem affecting more than 50 million Americans each year. Unfortunately, a higher percentage of children suffer from allergies than adults. Some of the individuals who have allergies also have asthma. At Premier Urgent Care, serving Newington CT and Oxford CT and the surrounding region, we recognize the huge inconvenience these issues are and offer allergy testing and treatment to help. We also realize how serious an allergy can be.
What are allergies?
Allergies are reactions caused by an overactive immune system that responds in symptomatic ways to a perceived foreign substance. Symptoms can vary by allergen, and are produced while eating, inhaling, or coming into physical contact with the substance. Antibodies to these allergens are then produced, eliciting these symptoms.
What symptoms do allergies cause?
Allergic symptoms may manifest differently depending on the particular substance. You may notice symptoms that cause discomfort to your sinuses, nasal passages, digestive tract, airways, or skin. Such symptoms may include a runny nose, sneezing, vomiting and/or diarrhea, difficulty breathing, coughing, and hives or rashes. A reaction can be anywhere from mild to severe, and may be unpredictable at times.
What happens during a serious reaction?
The most severe reaction to an allergen involves more than one system of the body, and is known as anaphylaxis. Symptoms of anaphylaxis may include one or more of the following, but are not limited to: loss of consciousness, swollen throat or other body parts, wheezing, severe shortness of breath, skin rashes/hives, drop in blood pressure, tachycardia, nausea, abdominal cramps, diarrhea, and vomiting.
What are the symptoms of hay fever?
If you have an allergy to pollen, dander, mold, or another substance you inhale, you may find yourself experiencing bouts of sneezing. Your eyes may become itchy, and you might have a stuffy, runny, or itchy nose.
Hay fever, otherwise known as allergic rhinitis, is commonly experienced during the spring season. An abundance of pollen, dander, mold, or other inhalable substances may cause the mucous membranes of eyes and nose to become inflamed, resulting in sneezing, watery/itchy eyes, and a congested/runny nose.
How do you test for allergies?
Allergy testing can be helpful in determining potential allergens that trigger reactions. In our clinic we can perform skin-prick testing which involves exposing the skin to small amounts of the suspected allergens followed by pricking the outer layer of the skin. The patient is then observed for a period of time for any signs of a localized reaction developing and the intensity and response of the reaction is measured. Additionally, we offer blood testing that measures the levels of IgE antibodies towards a specific allergy trigger. These results to these tests aid our clinic in developing a treatment plan which may include avoidance, medications, or immunotherapy.
How do you treat an allergy?
Allergies may be treated with various methods such as avoidance, medication, or immunotherapy. Our clinic specializes in various immunotherapy treatments which allow your body to gradually build tolerance to these allergens until you no longer react to your allergens.
Food allergy desensitization, also known as oral immunotherapy is an extremely effective treatment that enables patients to be able to eventually consume their allergen without a reaction. This is accomplished by gradually introducing microscopic quantities of the food into your diet over time until your body can tolerate a substantial quantity of the food without eliciting a reaction.
Sublingual immunotherapy (SLIT) improves tolerance without direct ingestion of the substance, and can be applied to both food and environmental triggers. This is achieved by holding extracts of the allergen under your tongue and slowly increasing the concentration of the extract drops over time until the body has fully adjusted.
Additionally, our clinic offers subcutaneous immunotherapy, which is also known as traditional allergy shots. This technique delivers the allergens via injection through the skin in increasing increments to build tolerance to environmental triggers.
Schedule allergy testing with Premier Urgent Care, serving Newington CT and Oxford CT and the nearby area, by calling us today. You may also book an appointment using our online form. We serve patients from Oxford CT, Newington CT, Naugatuck CT, New Britain CT, Seymour CT, Wethersfield CT, West Hartford CT, Ansonia CT, Bristol CT, Cromwell CT, and Waterbury CT.