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What is an allergy?

What is an allergy?

Every day, your immune system encounters thousands of pathogens that try to penetrate and wreak havoc on your body. In fact, if it wasn’t for this system, none of us would be alive today!

Even though this system is highly sophisticated, it is not perfect. Every now and then, your immune system will launch a severe immune response against a harmless substance. If this process is recurrent, we are dealing with an allergy.

Causes of allergy

The exact causes of allergy have not yet been pinpointed; however, scientists believe it’s a combination of nature and nurture.

The nature part is the genetic predisposition that runs in families. If you have a close relative with many allergies, your risk of developing a new onset allergy is high.

The nature part relates to environmental exposure to chemical substances, which can be the trigger point of allergies.

Immunologists refer to the immune reaction that causes allergy symptoms as a hypersensitivity reaction. During a hypersensitivity reaction, your immune system will release several pro-inflammatory substances, such as histamine, leukotrienes, and prostaglandins. All of these molecules will cause the typical symptoms of an allergic reaction, which include:

  • Congested nose
  • Sneezing
  • Skin rash
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Hives
  • Swollen lips and tongue

Treatment options

At first, you might think that the best treatment option for allergies is to reduce the hyperactivity of the immune system. However, this treatment is left for extremely severe cases since it could be very damaging.

If you suppress your immune system, you will susceptible to developing many dangerous infections.

Therefore, the best treatment for allergies is to identify the substances that are causing these reactions.

Before the invention of allergy testing, this process was extremely expensive, long, and ineffective. Fortunately, you can accurately pinpoint the substance that’s causing your allergy from the comfort of your home, using home allergy testing.

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Ställ gärna frågor om allergier, intoleranser, korsallergier, magbesvär såsom IBS eller annat du undrar över. Du kan kontakta oss här, eller genom att skriva en kommentar nedan.

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