Allergies refer to exaggerated immune responses to certain environmental agents, also known as triggers. The adverse immune responses occur when the immune system identifies these agents as dangerous intruders and react by producing chemicals to counter them. The triggers may vary from person to person and cause different reactions in different individuals. Many of them are common enough to be found in every home. Even though allergies are not seen as a serious health issue, they need to be handled with care because they are common yet preventable. The best way to deal with them is to prevent them by avoiding exposure to triggers. For this reason, it is important for the patients to know all about their triggers and avoid them. Here are the 5 most common household allergy triggers you should know about:
1.Pollen: Pollen, the fine powdery substance produced by grasses, weeds, and trees, is regarded as one of the most common triggers for allergies in human beings. These particles are extremely light and tiny, making it easier for them to travel with wind. The patient inhales them and they reach the throat through the nasal passage. Those allergic to pollen can fall prey to seasonal problems such as rose fever or hay fever. These conditions are characterized by symptoms such as sneezing, itchy throat, nasal congestion, coughing, runny nose and watery eyes.
2.Mold: Another common allergen is mold, the tiny fungi with spores that thrive in damp areas such as piles of grass and leaves and bathrooms. Like pollen, molds too float in the air and enter the human airways in the same way. The symptoms of mold-induced allergy are similar to those caused by pollen-induced allergy. The best way to prevent it is by discouraging the growth of mold in your surroundings.
3.Animal Dander: Animal dander is skin flakes that are shed by pets. It contains a kind of protein that can cause allergies in human beings. It can even aggravate the symptoms of asthma in people suffering from it. This is a common allergy trigger for the families that have pets. Not only does dander directly cause allergies but it also harbors other allergens such as pollen and molds. Sneezing, nasal congestion, coughing, runny nose and itchy or watery eyes are some of the symptoms of dander-induced allergy. An Allergist Atlanta or elsewhere would suggest the patients not to keep pets to prevent these issues.
4.Dust Mites: Dust mites are the microorganisms that thrive in the house dust. They are sturdy enough to survive in extreme climates and feed on the dead skin cells shed by human beings. An extremely common form of trigger, it affects as many as 20 million people in the US alone. The symptoms of this allergy are diverse, ranging from runny nose to itchy skin, congestion, chest pain, shortness of breath, sinus pressure, and swollen eyes. Keeping the house dust-free is the best way to combat it.
5.Food: Besides these germs and microorganisms, food is another common allergy trigger. Food allergies are attributed to a variety of foods such as peanuts, walnuts, cashews, cow’s milk, wheat, fish and eggs. The symptoms may be mild such as swelling, sneezing, runny nose, watery eyes, vomiting, nausea, diarrhea and stomach cramps. There may be severe ones such as breathing problems, dizziness, wheezing and hives.
Prevention is the primary strategy for controlling allergic reactions in people of any age. Knowing the exact allergy triggers is essential to prevent them. You must be careful enough whether at home or outside. Also, you should have a good allergist for treating you as and when problems arise.