The weather often changes these days. It even rains during the winter time so please take care of your health. In this article we introduce you to one problem often related to changes in the weather; allergies. Allergies are caused by the body’s response to certain stimulants. Normally stimulants, such as dust mites, pollen, as well as the food we eat on a daily basis, would caused no harm to the human body. However, in case of an allergy, the body’s response to those substances is extreme and causes an inflammation to the organs exposed to the allergens. Allergies are caused by both genetic and environmental factors. If either the father or the mother has allergy, chances that their children might also have the allergy are up to 30-50%. If both the father and the mother have an allergy, the chances will be increased to 50- 70%, while children who come from families with no allergy record will have about only 10% chances of having allergy.
Allergies can be catagorised accordingly to the body system; there are 5 types as follow:
1. Respiratory allergies such as asthma:
The symptoms of the patient while having asthma include chest symptom, have dense dyspnea (shortness of breath); and whistling respiration. The symptoms may occur at any site. Symptoms may be alleviated with bronchodilators, but it usually works fully only in the beginning. After receiving medication for a certain time, the patient will have to receive the medication more often and with a higher dosage. Sometimes the symptoms may only be coughing at night; a chronic cough without the whistling sound, or during exercise.
2. Allergic rhinitis or sinusitis: There are different types for allergic rhinitis symptoms which are: Nasal discharge symptoms with itchy nose, sneezing, the flowing of clear nasal discharge. Stuffed nose symptoms A combination of these two with a chronic cough with phlegm in the morning; some may have chronic headaches, snoring, dry mouth, frequent sighing or itchy eyes.
3. Allergic skin diseases: The most common diseases which can be found are urticaria (a kind of skin rash) and allergic dermatitis. Patients with urticaria usually begin with itching, followed by swelling, which can occur throughout the body. Patient with severe symptoms may have swollen eyelids, lips or genitals. Patients with allergic dermatitis have symptoms which usually start during their first year of life. They will have a rash on their body and face with dry skin and skin inflammation. Young patients are at risk of developing respiratory allergies when they grow up. The major cause of allergic skin diseases in children is food allergies. Food allergies for cow’s milk, eggs, seafood and wheat flour are the most common in Thai children.
4. Eyes allergy: This is an inflammation of the conjunctiva and under the eyelids. Symptoms include itchy eyes, acrid, red and watery eyes and having gum in the eyes. This occurs when the eyes are exposed to the stimulants/allergens such as dust, pollen or animal hairs. Patients with an eye allergy may also have allergic rhinitis.
5. Anaphylaxis: This is an allergic reaction which may be life threatening. Allergic reactions can be severe and fast to occur, with many systemic symptoms. Symptoms include itchiness, urcitaria, swollen face and lip, constriction in the throat, sneezing, flowing of nasal discharge, and difficulty in breathing. The more severe symptoms include abdominal pain, vomiting, diarrhea, blood pressure decreased and can be fatal If not treated promptly. For those who have asthma, it might stimulate the existing asthma. The major causes of anaphylaxis are severe allergies in food, medicine and insects. Patients with anaphylaxis need to avoid such allergens. Patients who have severe allergic reactions such as shock are given adrenaline or epinephrine injections (medication to stimulate the heartbeat and increases blood pressure) and may need to have this medication with them at all times to prevent death before being able to see a doctor.