The Top Allergies That You Might Not Know You Have
For those who have severe allergies, it can be hard to go about their daily lives without having to be extra cautious. Allergies come in many forms and some people can have common allergies such as hay fever, while others might be allergic to certain foods. Some people, of course, have multiple allergies.
Reactions to any substance can occur out of the blue at any stage in our lives even for things that have never bothered us before. As Erica White explains in her article Allergy & Erratic Reactions:
“Hypersensitivity to environmental substances – pollen, dust, gas, animals, chemicals, perfume – usually happens when the immune system is already overloaded. It then shoots off wildly in all directions, inappropriately making antibodies to all sorts of substances.”
This helps explain why sometimes, people do not even realise that they are allergic to something because it has never been an issue before.
So, what are the most common allergies?
Read on to hear about some of the top allergies that you might not know you have:
One of the most common allergies that people around the world have is an allergy to pollen which is more prevalent in spring and summer when the pollen count is high. This usually results in teary eyes, runny noses and can become more severe in certain people.
Many people refer to a pollen allergy as hay fever, which it is, but there is also a difference between perennial and seasonal hay fever. An allergy to dust is also hay fever, albeit rather than the dust itself, it is droppings of dust mites, tiny insects that live in the dust, that cause the problem.
Do you find that you sneeze a lot inside your home? This might indicate that you are having an allergic reaction to the dust mites that live inside of your home.
If you have asthma, a dust mite allergy can trigger your asthma symptoms. This can cause serious health issues, especially for young children with asthma.
If you or any of the family are allergic to dust mites, you need to deep clean your home and then ensure you have a thorough regular cleaning regime in place. (But see household chemicals below)
Extreme circumstances might necessitate extreme action such as replacing your carpets with hard flooring. If you decide to do this, you may wish to consider temporarily moving as much furniture as possible into storage to make the changeover process and the deep clean easier. Safestore furniture storage options recommend your furniture is thoroughly cleaned and covered before moving it into storage.
There are several types of medication available for sufferers of hay fever (pollen allergy and dust allergy) but there are also several natural remedy options as detailed in the aforementioned What is Hay Fever article.
Another common allergy that many people do not realise that they have, often for a very long time, is an allergy to gluten. Gluten is in your bread, in pasta and in many other things that you eat every single day.
If you experience bloating, stomach pain and the other symptoms of gluten allergy, it might be time to get your health checked out by an expert.
Coeliac disease is thought to affect 1 in 100 people in the UK although only 30% have been diagnosed. Coeliac disease is an autoimmune disease caused by a reaction to gluten, and therefore not technically a food allergy or intolerance.
No one wants to be bitten by an insect or stung by a bee, but for some, this kind of incident can be much more severe and even lead to anaphylaxis which is a medical emergency. (Other severe allergies can also cause anaphylaxis, such as a nut allergy.)
People who are known to have such severe allergies will often have an adrenaline auto-injector and should always use it if they think a potential incident, such as a bee sting, has occurred.
It is always a good idea to wear insect repellent and avoid areas where these insects are high in population, and to know what symptoms to expect and how to treat insect bites.
Did you know that many household cleaning products contain chemicals that you can be allergic to? Some researchers even suggest that people’s obsession with cleanliness may be to blame for the increasing rise of common allergies, prompting such occurrences as asthma, eczema and hay fever symptoms.
There are now lots of very effective natural cleaning products available, which are much safer options. This guide to natural cleaning is very helpful.
Similarly, even many personal care products contain quite strong chemicals, some of which are thought to be carcinogenic. Many hair dyes are prime examples. Again, there are lots of wonderful organic, natural and eco-friendly options available nowadays.
Look for The Symptoms
If you think that you have been showing unexplained symptoms, you might find that you have one of these allergies. It can be very difficult to pinpoint allergies, so an Allergy & Intolerance Test is often a good starting point.
You might also like to speak with your GP, bearing in mind it can be quite difficult to get referred for an allergy test. But do not leave an allergy untreated if you can because they do tend to get worse if not dealt with and can lead to further complications.