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Allergy Medications
Information On Allergies And How To Chose The Best Allergy Medicine

Get advice on allergy medications available, expert information on allergies and the best approach to dealing with the various causes of allergy - from hay fever, allergic reactions, peanut allergy to hives and nettles. And more. You will be able to order allergy pills here too.

Allergy Medications

Allergic diseases result from exaggerated and often inappropriate response of one's immune system to contact with certain substances in the environment.

About one in five persons will suffer with one form of allergy or the other at a given time in their lives. Such allergic responses manifest as any one of the following conditions:

  • Hay fever (Allergic Rhinitis)
  • Urticaria rash (Hives and nettles)
  • Allergic conjunctivitis (brown to dusky coloration of the white of the eyes with itching and wateriness - often both eyes)
  • Eczema (Atopic dermatitis)
  • Food Allergy (e.g egg and nut allergy)
  • Cow Milk Allergy in Children
  • Allergy to medications
  • Allergy to insect bite
  • Asthma
  • Anaphylaxis

These allergic conditions could cause mild, moderate or severe life threatening illnesses, leading to disruption of good quality of life, loss of time at work, psychological and emotional scars, frequent hospitalization and even death.

The key to minimizing the effects of these inappropriate response of the immune system to otherwise harmless environmental substances is to clearly document the nature of symptoms that occur during such allergic reactions, find the possible trigger by keeping a meticulous diary of foods, drinks, and places one has been exposed to, and getting the appropriate allergy medications during an attack or even the use of preventers where possible. Avoidance of triggers is central to successful management.

Common Causes And Triggers Of Allergy

Wondering what might be causing your frequent allergy? Genetic predisposition, and exposure to certain environmental triggers are responsible for most allergic reactions, be it hay fever to life threatening anaphylaxis.

Common triggers include:

  • Certain viruses (especially during change in season)
  • Pollens from plants (worse during the blossoming seasons of spring and summer)
  • Certain foods
  • Pets (e.g cat fur, dogs)
  • Cigarette smoke
  • Dust
  • House dust mites
  • Drugs and medications
  • Chemicals and metals

Hives or urticaria rash can also be triggered by high or low extremes of temperature. If you notice, for example that you develop rash after having hot baths, trying using less warm water might help, if this is the cause.

In cases where it is difficult to put one's finger on what might be causing an allergy, doing a test often helps. The following are the types of test for allergy available.

Allergy Tests & Investigations

The need may arise for allergic tests to be carried out to ascertain a cause of allergy, and commencement of allergy medications.

Common investigations and tests for allergy include:

  • Skin Prick Test
    This allergy skin test involve placing a suspected allergy trigger on the skin, and then the skin is pricked with a needle. It is used for food allergy and pollen testing. A red swelling (wheal) will develop within 15 to 30 minutes if one is allergic to that allergen. Anti allergic medications must be stopped and avoided before before doing this test, so as not to alter the result.
  • Skin Patch Test
    This allergy test is usually done by experts. It involves placing about 30 to 40 potential allergic triggers in a disc which is then taped to the back skin for 48 hours. It is then read by a dermatologist. This test is usually for contact dermatitis.
  • Radioallergosorbent test (RAST)
    This is the most sensitive allergy blood test. It is a quantitative test that measures how much antibody (IgE) that a person produces to a specific suspected allergy trigger. It can be used to diagnose a pollen allergy, food allergy, investigate causes of skin conditions like eczema, psoriasis and chronic hives and urticaria.

If you think you might be having food or pollen allergy, or allergy to some other items, and want to be sure, you can get specialist finger prick blood tests taken at home, with no need for a GP (family doctor) or hospital appointment, carried out by the only independently endorsed laboratory by Allergy UK from YORKTEST Laboratories.

Allergy Medications

If you suffer with hay fever (allergic rhinitis), chronic urticaria, or other forms of recurrent allergic reactions like seasonal allergic conjunctivitis, it is important to familiarize yourself with the available allergy medicines. This is because, you may find one allergy medication to work for you this time, and then stop working next time.

Also learning about allergy pills helps you to be in control of your allergy problem, in collaboration with your doctor or health care provider.

The commonly used allergy medications are:

  • Anti Histamines. Examples are: Piriton (Chlorpheniramine) Claritin (Loratadine) Allegra(Fexofenadine) Zyrtec (Cetirizine) Benadryl (Diphenhydramine) Phenergan (Promethazine) Atarax (Hydroxyzine)
  • Mast Cell Stabilizers like Sodium Cromoglycate
  • Steroids. Examples are of such used for allergic conditions are: Mometasone (Nasonex) Budesonide (Rhinocort Aqua, Pulmicort) Prednisolone tablets Hydrocortisone Injection
  • Adrenaline (epinephrine) Injection EpiPen injection Anapen injection
  • Immunotherapy Agents Omalizumab
  • C1 Esterase Inhibitor C1-esterase inhibitor (Berinert)

These various classes of allergy medications work by different mechanism. You may need to use one from a group or a combination as required.

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