Allergies are conditions where your immune system overreacts due to foreign substances. Your immune system produces antibodies. Allergies arise when your immune system makes antibodies to identify allergens as harmful, and they are not. Your body will respond by discharging chemical messages throughout the body, causing allergy symptoms. Asthma is a chronic condition that develops when your body reacts to an allergy trigger. It makes your airways narrow and swell and can lead to breathing difficulties. The symptoms of Bastrop asthma & allergies vary in each patient, ranging from mild to severe.
Infections: Colds, flu, and sinus infections can trigger allergies and asthma.
Allergens: Dust mites, pollens, pets, mold spores, and certain foods can trigger allergic reactions.
Medicines: Drugs like aspirin, ibuprofen, and beta-blocker used to treat high blood pressure, migraines or glaucoma can trigger allergies.
Strong emotions: Anxiety, crying, yelling, or laughing hard can lead to allergic reactions.
Exercise: Physical activities can trigger allergies and are more common in children.
History and physical exam: Your doctor will ask about any symptoms you are experiencing and anything unusual you may have taken or come in contact with your body. If you have a rash on your skin, your doctor can do a physical examination.
Skin test: Your doctor can recommend a skin test for allergies. The procedure involves your allergist pricking or scratching your skin with tiny needles containing potential allergens. The allergist will record how your skin reacts. Your skin will turn red and become inflamed if you are allergic to a specific substance.
Allergy blood test: Your doctor can recommend a blood test if you have a severe allergic reaction. An allergy blood test involves checking the presence of immunoglobulin E (IgE) antibodies. IgEs are cells that react to allergens.
X-ray: Your doctor can prescribe a chest X-ray to view your lungs.
Pulmonary function test: This test involves blowing a specific tube placed between your lips. The pulmonary function test measures how well your lungs breathe and exhale air.
Peak expiratory flow: The test involves blowing a hand-held device known as a peak flow meter. Peak expiratory flow measures the maximum speed you can exhale air from your lungs.
Methacholine challenge test: Methacholine is an irritant that tightens your airways. The methacholine challenge test shows if your airways are sensitive to irritation.
Medications: Drugs such as anticholinergic can relieve asthma symptoms and may be the only medication you use when you have intermittent symptoms.
A control inhaler: You may use inhaled corticosteroids or long-acting beta-agonists to prevent and manage mild and persistent asthma symptoms.
Anti-inflammatory medications or injectables: Oral corticosteroids, leukotriene modifiers, or biologics can help prevent and manage severe asthma symptoms. They can also help manage allergy symptoms.
Antihistamines: Classic allergy symptoms like itching can be treated with antihistamines.
Immunotherapy: Allergy shots help your body become less sensitive to specific allergens, and you use them if your allergic symptoms become more severe.
Asthma and most allergies have no cure, but treatments help manage your symptoms. Schedule an appointment at Pompeyo C Chavez, MD, for asthma and allergy treatment to relieve your symptoms.