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Allergic Reaction

What does having an allergic reaction mean?

When people have allergic reactions, their bodies are reacting negatively to something that disturbs or upsets their body's immune system.

The purpose of the body's immune system is to protect the body from harmful substances. Therefore, when a foreign substance called an allergen enters the body and causes the body to react, the person has a hypersensitivity to it and suffers from an allergic reaction. 

The body then has to fight off this substance with antibodies, which are found in the bloodstream. In this internal battle, the cells that are often attacked release fighting mechanisms, which result in a chemical reaction in the body. This chemical reaction often produces itchy skin; as in the case of hives, thickening of the throat so that the person cannot breathe; as in the case with those allergic to peanuts. These chemicals are also the causes of other common reactions including hay fever and pink eye. Other allergic reactions are itchy eyes; a rash in one area of the skin, a small area, or over the whole body; increase in blood pressure; and swelling.

Things that can cause an allergic reaction include: dust, pollen, mold, viruses, plants, animal dander, certain foods, medicines, insect venoms (e.g. mosquito, snake bites and bee stings), and bacteria. If you’re consistently experiencing allergic reactions, then you should consult a medical professional to determine the type of treatment that will effectively remedy your ailment.

 

 

 

Copyright ENT and Allergy Associates, LLP
04/15/2010

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