Help Allergies, Cure Allergies, Stop Allergies
Mold, Dust, Pollen, Grass, Food, Cats and Dogs
Relief for Allergy Sneezing, Coughing, Runny Nose and Pain
If you have allergies, you are looking for a way to help and cure allergies. If you have sneezing, coughing, runny nose, swelling, rash and that tired, irritated feeling, you may have an allergy. You may be sensitive to something you ate or to something in your environment. Many people are allergic to mold, dust, pollen, and grass. Some people are allergic to the dander of animals like cats, dogs and horses. Other people are allergic to certain foods. The most common food allergies are caused by wheat, milk, soy and corn. There is help and relief for many allergies.
- 1. What Causes Allergies to Pollen, Grass, Mold, Dust, Cats, Dogs and Foods?
- 2. What Are the Symptoms of Allergies to Pollen, Grass, Mold, Dust, Cats, Dogs and Foods?
- 3. Other Allergy Triggers
- 4. The Best Way to Help Allergies and Cure Your Allergies
- 5. Medicines That Can Help Allergies and Cure Your Allergies
- 6. Changes Around the House can Help Allergies and Cure Your Allergies
- 7. Do It Yourself Ways to Help Allergies and Cure Allergies
- 8. How to Help and Cure Food Allergies
- 9. The Skin Test Identifies Food and Environmental Allergies
- 10. Allergy Shots Help and Cure Allergies
- 11. To Help Allergies and Cure Allergies, the Elimination Test
- 12. A Natural Food Diet Can Help Allergies and Cure Allergies
- 13. Probiotics Can Help Allergies and Cure Allergies
- 14. An Allergy Can Cause Anaphylactic Shock
- 15. What Happens During an Allergic Reaction?
Allergies are a growing problem that affects at least 20% of people in the United States. The causes of allergy are triggers like pollen, grass, mold, dust, cats, dogs, horses, other animals and many foods.
Allergies are an abnormal response of the immune system. The immune system is your body's defense against germs. All the unpleasant symptoms of an allergy attack are caused by your immune system acting on harmless substances as if they were dangerous. Your immune system is responding to a false alarm.
Allergy to pollen, grass, mold, dust, foods or animal dander causes a physical reaction. You don't "catch" allergies the way you catch a cold. Your body becomes hypersensitive to things that don't bother most people. How do you get allergies? No one yet knows why we become allergic. Scientists think both genes and the environment have something to do with it.
Allergies tend to run in families. If your parents had allergies, you are more likely to be allergic to something. Air pollution also seems to be a factor in the increase of allergies. You are also more likely to have an allergy attack if you have had a severe allergic reaction in the past, or if you have asthma, lung conditions, sinus infections, ear infections and sensitive skin. There are other important influences that contribute to allergic responses. Some of these include smoking, pollution, infection, and hormones. Digestive problems like Candidiasis and the syndrome called a "leaky gut" could also be a factor in allergies.
Allergy symptoms vary from person to person. If you have an allergy, your symptoms can be a mild eye irritation and congestion, or you may have a more severe reaction with generalized swelling and difficulty breathing. Allergies can cause sneezing, coughing, runny nose, itching, rash, congestion, swelling, difficulty breathing and asthma. If the allergen is in the air, like pollen and dust, the allergic reaction is likely to occur in the eyes, nose and lungs. If the allergen is food, the allergic reaction often occurs in the mouth, stomach, and intestines. Symptoms of a serious food allergy attack can include abdominal pain, vomiting, diarrhea, swelling and inability to breathe.
Sinusitis is a complication due to allergy. Sinusitis is an inflammation, or swelling, of the tissue lining the sinuses. Normally, sinuses are filled with air, but when sinuses become blocked and filled with fluid, germs, bacteria, viruses and fungi can grow and cause an infection.
Also, if you have problem with asthma, an allergy reaction can make it worse. It is thought that many migraine headaches are related to allergies, too.
Almost anything can trigger an allergic reaction in someone. People who have one allergy often have many allergies. If you have allergies, you probably know some of the allergens that bring on an attack, what doctors call your "triggers". Your triggers could be food, plants, environmental conditions, or a combination of these. They are often pollen, grass, mold, dust, cats, dogs and many foods. Well-known allergens are
- Medicines and vaccines, aspirin, penicillin
- A wide range of foods like shellfish, peanuts, corn. A more complete list of foods is included below.
- Environment substances like dust, pollen, mold spores, poison ivy, latex, burning wood
- Dust mites, microscopic organisms that live in house dust and cause allergies all year round
- Animal dander and poison ivy, bee stings, stings of other insects
- Chemicals, solvents, perfumes, VOC volatile organic compounds, odors, smoke, and so forth. Chemical sensitivities are actually not allergies and are not well understood. They do not produce allergy antibodies, but they do cause allergy symptoms.
- Minor injuries, hot or cold temperatures, exercise, or even emotions may be triggers in some cases.
By an allergy cure, we mean help for allergy that reduces the pain, sneezing, coughing, and other symptoms. Some allergies improve over time, but there is no known cure. Here are steps you can take to reduce the severity of the allergy attack, to make yourself more comfortable and to prevent and to treat allergy attacks when they occur.
If you are allergic to any of the airborne allergens like dust, pollen, mold and dust mites, the best way to get cure allergy symptoms is to install a whole house air filtration system. These filters are installed between the furnace and the cold air return duct. With HEPA or near-HEPA filtering, they can clean up to 99% of the allergens from the air. The cost of some brands, including installation, is about $400. The replacement filter costs about $35 a year. The whole house air cleaner provides significant relief of airborne allergy symptoms.
Another way to help allergy and cure cure allergy symptons, when whole house air filtration is not possible, is a HEPA room air cleaner for allergy relief. The cost is about $130. To get maximum benefit, close the windows, the heat vents and the cold air return in the room while you use the air cleaner.
Allergy symptoms can be helped and cured by prescription medicines and over-the-counter medicines. Allergy medicines provide partial relief from almost all types of allergy symptoms, no matter what the trigger. You may have to try several brands to find the one that helps best with the fewest side effects. Side effects might include sleepiness or hyperactivity. The well-known medicines to help and cure allergy symptoms are:
- Antihistamines such as Benadryl, Clarinex, Zyrtec, or Allegra
- Oral decongestants like Sudafed
- Nasal decongestants like Afrin and Dristan
- Steroidnasal sprays, including Beconase, Rhinocort, Nasonex, Flonase, and Veramyst
- Medicines that combine a combination of antihistamines and decongestants like Allegra-D, Claritin-D, or Zyrtec-D.
- Hydrocortisone, a steroid, is used as an anti-inflammatory medication to treat the symptoms of an allergic reaction..
- Tranquilizers are sometimes prescribed for allergy reactions.
- For coughing and lung congestion, drugs called bronchodilators may be prescribed to widen the airways
- For more serious symptoms, epinephrine may be needed in an emergency.
6. Changes Around the House can Help and Cure Your Allergies
- The best way to help and cure allergies is to avoidance your triggers. Allergy triggers like pollen, grass, mold, dust, cat and dog dander can be avoided. Hay fever is a seasonal allergy caused by pollen in the air. If you are sensitive to pollen, stay indoors on windy days and days when pollen counts are high, keep the windows closed, and use air conditioning. Don't hang clothes outside to dry.
- Symptoms of dust mite allergy are similar to pollen allergy but often occur year round rather than just seasonally. You can reduce dust mites by washing bed sheets in hot water, and covering the mattresses, pillows and box springs with dust mite covers.
- Keep the house free of items that collect dust, such as stuffed animals, curtains and carpet. Use a vacuum cleaner with a high-efficiency HEPA filter and a Micro-lined Vacuum Bag to capture indoor allergens.
- Use hypoallergenic pillows and bedding. Remove feather pillows and down comforters.
- The proteins in animal skin and saliva can cause allergic reactions. The most important animal allergens have been found in the urine of rats and in the urine, saliva, and fur of guinea pigs. Avoid the animals that trigger your allergy, be they dogs, cats, horses, or cockroaches. Animal hide, leather and suede, animal skin rugs, cashmere sweaters, fur coats and fur rugs can be allergic triggers.
- Molds are parasitic, microscopic fungi with spores that float in the air like pollen. Mold allergies can be seasonal or year-round. Molds live in damp areas such as basements, bathrooms and house plants. They also grow in rotten wood and old furniture. Avoid outdoor activities that expose you to the molds in grass, leaf piles, hay, mulch or under mushrooms. Use special purpose cleaners to control Indoor molds. Keep the humidity in the house between 30% and 45%.
- A latex allergy can be triggered by latex gloves, latex condoms and certain medical devices. Avoid latex products if you are sensitive to them.
- For allergies triggered by insect stings, avoid wearing bright colors and perfumes that attract insects. Use an insecticide poison on the insects and their hives that you can't avoid.
7. Do It Yourself Ways to Help Allergies and Cure Allergies
To relieve the discomfort of an mild allergy attack, there are a number of ways you can help allergy symptoms and cure them.
- A steamy shower or a steam inhaler will relieve congestion. Menthol cough drops and menthol rubs can also sooth congestion. A wet cloth on the forehead, an ice pack or a heat pack are helpful for some people.
- An over-the-counter cortisone cream will calm itchy skin. Even cold medicine relieves many allergy symptoms temporarily. Familiar over-the-counter pain relievers like Ibuprofen (Advil) and Acetaminophen (Tylenol) are useful.
- Nasal washing helps sinus congestion. The neti pot is a small ceramic container shaped like a teapot. It is filled with warm, slightly salty water and used to irrigate the sinus cavities. Standing over a basin, you pour the water from the neti pot into one nostril, until water runs out the other nostril. The water washes away pollens, mucus, viruses and bacteria. Daily cleansing will help keep your sinuses clean and make breathing easier.
- Take vitamin supplements. Anything that strengthens the immune system could very well improve your tolerance to allergens. A complete multi-vitamin, multi-mineral supplement has many health benefits. Vitamin supplements help support the immune system and contribute to your overall health.
- Many alternative therapies are valuable to help and cure allergy symptoms. Acupuncture, massage, meditation, yoga and tai chi exercise are often recommended.
- Reducing the stress level in your daily life can also reduce your allergies.
8. How to Help and Cure Food Allergies
Food allergies occur when a sensitive person eats, inhales, or touches even tiny amounts of foods or food additives. These allergic reactions vary from mild to life-threatening. Food allergies sometimes fade over time. The symptoms of food allergy are hives, swelling,congestion, vomiting and difficulty breathing. Symptoms usually occur soon after eating the trigger food. If you can identify the foods that trigger your allergy, the best treatment is to avoid them.
The most common foods that cause allergic reactions are
cow's milk, hen's eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, soybeans, wheat, fish, shellfish such as shrimp, crabs, lobster, mollusks such as clams, oysters and mussels. Other foods which trigger allergic reactions can include brewer's yeast, corn, beans, pork, strawberry, chocolate, tomatoes, cheese, wine, beer, pickles, baking yeast, avocado, coffee, peanut oil, soybean oil, sunflower seed oil, corn oil, sulfites and other food preservatives, MSG monosodium glutamate, and other food additives.
9. The Skin Test Identifies Food and Environmental Allergies
Skin testing is widely used to identify your allergy triggers. You can be tested for allergy to mold, dust, pollen, grass, foods, cats, dogs, as well as other known causes of allergy. An allergy specialist may administer a skin test by introducing small amounts of many known allergens under your skin. If you are allergic to any of them, your skin will become irritated and itchy, much like a mosquito bite. When your allergens or triggers are identified from the skin test, the doctor can begin a regimen of allergy shots to build up your immunity.
10. Allergy Shots Cure, Help and Stop Allergies
After determining your allergy triggers with a skin test, your allergist will recommend allergy shots. Allergy shots can often cure, help and stop allergies. They are a popular treatment option called immunotherapy. With the shot, minute samples of allergens are injected into your shoulder. The shots stimulate the immune system and gradually increase your ability to tolerate allergens. The shots are administered every week for a period of up to five years. Allergy shots are not always effective.
11. To Help Allergies and Cure Allergies, the Elimination Test
The Elimination Test is used to identify the foods that cause your allergic reaction. You will get relief from your food allergies to avoiding the foods that trigger them. Step one of the Elimination Test is to stop eating all the foods that commonly cause allergies. You stay on the restricted diet for several weeks. You will also keep a food diary of what you eat and how you feel. It is likely that your symptoms of food allergy will disappear during the test. Then, one at a time, foods are introduced back into your diet as a challenge to your immune system. By observing the reaction caused by the new food, you discover your food allergies. The Elimination Diet and Challenge Process help identify the foods that cause you the most problems, but it is not foolproof. There are psychological and physical factors that can affect the results.
12. A Natural Food Diet Can Help Allergies and Cure Allergies
Processed foods are any foods altered from their natural form. In processed foods, artificial colors, flavors and chemical additives are sometimes used. The discussion of food additives and their effects could fill a book in itself. There are also many hidden allergens in processed foods. When you shop for groceries, read the food labels. You will find wheat gluten, milk casein, eggs and corn in a surprising variety of processed foods, where you least expect them. Sulfites are widely used in raw and processed foods to prevent spoilage and discoloration. There are been suggestions that genetically modified foods, GMF, may also cause allergies. Reducing or eliminating processed foods from your diet, and replacing them with natural and organic foods is likely to strengthen your immune system.
13. Probiotics Can Help Allergies and Cure Allergies
Another way to help allergies and to cure allergies is to use probiotics for better digestion. They say that the digestive system is 80% of the immune system. Indeed, allergies often involve digestive problems. Many people help allergies and cure allergies with acidophilus and other probiotics supplements to improve their digestion. Probiotics increase the amount of good bacteria in your stomach. We often use many substances that kill off the good digestive bacteria, like Prilosec, Cipro, alcohol, Zantac and antibiotics, Probiotics help restore the good bacteria. Digestive enzymes in tablet form can also mitigate the symptoms of food allergies. Probiotics and digestive enzymes are available at grocery stores and health food stores. They have no adverse effects or interactions with most medicines.
Acidophilus and other probiotics supplements can help or cure your allergies if they are caused by Candidiasis. Candidiasis, or yeast infection, is an overgrowth of the yeast that normally live in the digestive system. Probiotics also help if your allergies are caused by "leaky gut". The "leaky gut" syndrome refers to intestines which are "leaking" undigested food proteins into the blood stream. The body attacks these undigested proteins in the blood as if they were allergens.
Although allergies can make you feel bad, most allergies usually won't kill you. However, sometimes people suffer a severe, life-threatening allergy reaction called anaphylaxis. In alaphylaxis, enough chemicals are released from the mast cells to cause a reaction throughout the body, Symptoms of anaphylaxis are hives, a quick drop in blood pressure, shock, or loss of consciousness. The causes of anaphylaxis in children have been identified as peanuts, other legumes, tree nuts, fish, shellfish, milk, and eggs. In adults, the foods most likely to cause anaphylaxis are peanuts, tree nuts, fish, and shellfish. Bee stings can also cause anaphylaxis.
If you have an severe allergic reaction and could go into anaphylactic shock, whether from a bee sting or a food allergy, you should get an injection of epinephrine immediately. Your health care provider may prescribe an epinephrine self-injector, sometimes called a bee-sting kit, to carry with you. The injection provides quick relief from a severe allergy attack. EpiPen is one brand name. You should also consider wearing a MedicAlert bracelet.
When a person is exposed to an allergen, the body reacts as if it was fighting off an invader. The white blood cells produce an antibody, called immunoglobulin E, to destroy the enemy. Antibodies produce histamines, which cause the unpleasant allergy symptoms. Physicians make a distinction between sensitivities and allergies. Sensitivities do not set off the antibody responses, but sensitivities do inflict similar symptoms and discomfort.
This information is provided for educational purposes only. It is not intended to replace the advice of your health care provider.
I hope life brings you much success. I wish you a very happy day.
----- Surfer Sam
Return to the complete index of new how-to articles.