Allergies are a common type of immune response. The immune system protects us from germs and other harmful substances, but sometimes it overreacts to harmless environmental substances. When an allergic reaction occurs, the immune system releases chemicals called histamines that cause symptoms like sneezing, coughing, and watery eyes. Histamine also causes side effects like hives, swelling, and shortness of breath. In this case, you should see a Silver Spring MD allergist.
Allergic reactions can happen to several things, including food, medications, pollen, and even pet dander-shedding from your dog or cat. Children tend to be more sensitive to allergies than adults because their immune systems are not as developed. Allergies usually develop between the ages of 2 and 5 years old.
Here are the different types of allergic reactions and their symptoms.
Types of an allergic reaction
Food allergies: Food allergies are the most common type of allergy. They cause your immune system to react when it comes to certain foods. The reaction can be mild or severe and may cause symptoms like hives, swelling, rashes, and even anaphylactic shock. The most common food allergies are milk, eggs, peanuts, and shellfish.
Pollen allergies: Pollen allergies are the most common type of allergies. These are caused by the small particles that float in the air due to tree pollination and grass seed production. The most common type of pollen allergy is hay fever, which affects about 50 million Americans yearly.
Allergens are materials that cause allergic reactions when they come into contact with your skin or mucous membranes. Pollen allergens are found in many plants and trees, but some animals can also produce allergens. Pollen inhaled through the nose can travel to the lungs, triggering allergic responses in people with asthma or other breathing disorders.
Insect bites and stings: Insect bites and stings cause itching, swelling, redness, and sometimes a rash or hives. Allergic reactions to insect bites can cause several problems. The most serious is anaphylaxis, which affects the circulatory system and can lead to death. Those with allergies to bees, wasps, and ants are at higher risk of anaphylactic shock if they are stung.
Mold allergies: These types of allergies are caused by a reaction to molds. The most common type of mold allergy is called “sensitization.” This means that the immune system has been exposed to the substance and treats it as harmful. If you have a high level of sensitivity, you can develop an allergic reaction to any mold or mildew that grows in your home.
Mold allergies can occur anywhere in the home, but they are most common in humid climates or areas with high humidity levels.
Allergies are a type of hypersensitivity in which the immune system reacts to harmless substances in the environment. When an allergy occurs, it causes an overreaction by the immune system, resulting in symptoms such as itching, hives, or even anaphylaxis. Allergies are not contagious and cannot be passed from person to person. However, if you are battling any type of allergy, reach out to Allergy & Asthma Clinic of Maryland experts today.