Allergies in Tarzana
An allergy refers to a response by your immune system to a foreign substance that doesn't typically harm other people or the human body. These substances that trigger allergic reactions are known as allergens, and include pollen, insect bites/stings, pet dander, certain foods, some medications, and so on.
Symptoms of allergies
The allergic reaction occurs when the person inhales, injects, swallows, touches, or comes in contact with the allergen in other ways. The reaction can be mild, life threatening, or somewhere in between, and is characterized by:
- Itchy nose, eyes, and throat
- Runny nose
- Watery eyes
- Itchy skin, eczema, or hives
- Redness and swelling
- Nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea
- Anaphylaxis - narrowing of airways such that it becomes difficult to breath
Treatment for allergies
In most cases, getting rid of the allergen should stop the symptoms from worsening, and gradually subside with the help of OTC remedies like decongestants and antihistamines. If your allergies are so severe that they affect your quality of life, then you should visit an ENT specialist for help in identifying the cause and managing the effects.
For severe reactions, Dr. Cohen may prescribe steroids to reduce swelling, and allergy shots (immunization therapy) to reduce your immune system's reaction to the allergens. If you're at risk of anaphylaxis, you may need to carry a dose of epinephrine, which helps to open airways by narrowing the blood vessels.
If you suspect that you have allergies, please visit Dr. Cohen for diagnosis and a personalized treatment plan to help improve your quality of life.