Do you wake up with nasal congestion and watery eyes every morning? Are you sick of experiencing sneezing fits whenever you take a hike through the Palmetto Trail or one of the many other scenic nature spots in South Carolina? If so, make it a plan this year to seek treatment for your allergies.
How Do I Know if I Have Allergies?
Depending on the type of allergies you have, you may experience a variety of different symptoms, including:
- Nasal congestion
- Runny nose
- Watery, swollen eyes
- Itchy nose, eyes or roof of the mouth
- Swelling of the lips, tongue or throat
- Nausea and stomach pain
- Difficulty breathing
In cases of severe allergies, people can experience anaphylaxis. This is a life-threatening reaction that causes your airways to narrow and your body to go into shock. It is an emergency that requires immediate medical assistance.
Allergy symptoms can overlap with those of other conditions like a cold or other viruses. However, allergy symptoms last longer than viruses and don’t tend to cause symptoms like body aches or fevers. If you are unsure, visit your doctor or an allergist to help get an accurate diagnosis.
The Best Ways To Treat Your Allergy Symptoms
Your allergy treatment options will largely depend on what type of allergy or allergies you have. Some options include:
- Avoiding your triggers. The best way to prevent allergy symptoms is to avoid your triggers. This is essential for people with food allergies. However, in the case of other allergies, it may not be realistic to avoid contact completely. You can take steps to minimize your exposure by doing things like keeping the windows to your house and car closed, investing in a quality air purifier for your home, and dusting and vacuuming regularly.
- Medications. Multiple OTC and prescription-strength medications exist to help reduce your allergy symptoms. These include antihistamines, nasal, oral and/or topical corticosteroids, decongestants and mast cell stabilizers.
- Epinephrine injector. Your allergist will give one of these to you if you have severe allergies and/or are at risk for anaphylaxis. It needs to be taken at the first sign of a serious allergic reaction. Your allergist will walk you through how to properly use it as well as your next steps to take after injection.
- Immunotherapy. Immunotherapy is a method of building tolerance to an allergen by introducing it to the body slowly in small doses, usually over a period of several years. It can be administered via allergy shots or sublingually in allergy drops or tablets.
For more information or to schedule an appointment to find the right allergy treatment for you, contact Carolina Pines ENT today.