Posts for category: ENT Health Care
Allergies are a common autoimmune condition. Allergies provoke overproduction of something called histamines. At Wake Ear, Nose & Throat Specialists & Wake Sinus Center, Dr. Pankaj Gupta tracks down allergic triggers with state-of-the-art testing and helps patients manage symptoms. He can help you feel better, too.
What signs show you have allergies
Sometimes, people who are sneezing, coughing, itching, wheezing or dealing with a runny or stuffy nose assume they have a cold. While the common cold virus provokes these symptoms, allergies also exhibit similar ones, but usually without the fever, malaise and sudden onset colds exhibit.
Allergic reactions happen when someone is exposed to an irritant, or allergen, which their bodies are particularly sensitive to. The allergen may be inhaled, touched, or ingested, producing common signs such as:
- Skin redness and rashes (hives)
- Nausea and vomiting
- Itchy, watery, puffy eyes
Common allergic triggers include dust, mold, animal dander, pollen, cigarette smoke, food, drugs, latex and more. Some reactions are mild to moderate. Others, such as those associated with insect vectors (bee stings), can be severe and life-threatening. These are called anaphylactic reactions and require immediate medical attention. Wheezing, extreme hives and even unconsciousness often accompany these extreme allergic responses.
Dealing with allergies
If you suspect you have allergies in one form or other, seek the advice of Wake Ear, Nose, and Throat Specialists and Wake Sinus Center in Cary for an allergy consultation with Dr. Gupta and his team of experts.
Dr. Gupta will review your symptoms, possible triggers and medical history. Often he performs in-office allergy testing in the form of pin tests (scratches on the skin which expose the body to minute amounts of possible allergens). Intradermal testing, injections of suspected allergen placed under the skin, is another method of honing in on allergic triggers and their severity.
Decongestants and antihistamine medications are common treatments for allergies. Allergy shots, desensitizing shots given at regular intervals, help control symptoms as well.
Of course, lifestyle adjustments can help, too. They may include:
- Staying indoors on high pollen count days
- Wearing a particle mask when doing housework or other dusty chores
- Washing hands and face after coming in from the outdoors
- Keeping a written log of symptoms, including foods you think you may be sensitive to
- Taking your medicine with you to school, work, the gym and especially on vacation
The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America states that one our of every five people in the United States have some form of allergies. So, you won't be alone in pursuing treatment and making changes in your habits to help control them.
Day to day life with allergies
You can manage your allergies, and Dr. Gupta and his team are more than happy to help you. For an individualized consultation, please call Wake Ear, Nose, and Throat Specialists and Wake Sinus Center at (913) 851-5636.
Your watery eyes itch. Your nose is running, and your throat feels scratchy. Do you have a cold? No, these are symptoms of your seasonal allergies in Cary, NC. How can you feel better? Dr. Pankaj Gupta, board-certified otolaryngologist, suggests several common strategies which reduce the unpleasantness of allergies.
What are your triggers?
Common allergy triggers--things or environmental conditions which instigate symptoms--are dust mites, pollen, wood smoke, mold and animal dander. Many individuals experience sensitivities to certain foods, medications, and fabrics as well.
While Dr. Gupta recommends you seek testing and treatment (shot therapy, sublingual drop therapy or over the counter medication) for more severe symptoms, less problematic allergies can be dealt with using simple lifestyle changes. These changes are especially helpful with seasonal allergies--those sensitivities which happen as winter changes to spring, summer changes to fall and so on.
So know your triggers, and plan to control them as they enter your environment or you enter theirs.
Simple preventives in Cary
There are many things you can do daily which help mitigate allergy discomforts. Just think about them, apply them intentionally and routinely, and you'll experience less intense symptoms. Here are some great examples from Dr. Gupta and from the American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology:
- Leave your shoes by the door. You'll keep your floors clean and track far less tree and grass pollen into the house.
- Wipe your dog down with a damp washcloth after a walk. This removes the pollen and road dust your pet inevitably picks up on his or her coat. Regarding cats, keep them inside if at all possible.
- Take a shower after you have been working or working out (jogging, walking, biking) outdoors. You, too, drag pollen into your home. The steam from your shower also opens your nasal passages and airway for better breathing.
- Reduce the humidity in your home with a dehumidifier. Less than 60 percent is ideal so mold growth is inhibited.
- Wear sunglasses to keep pollen from entering your eyes, and stay indoors if possible between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. when pollen is at its highest.
- In warm weather, close up the house and car, and use your air conditioning. Keep your HVAC units clean, and invest in HEPA filters to reduce the dust, animal dander, pollen, mold and other airborne particulates. Buy an allergen-reducing vacuum cleaner, and keep your floors and furniture clean.
- Wear long-sleeves and pants when working in dusty or pollen-filled environments.
- Check your local TV and radio news for area pollen counts during peak seasons. Also, there are many allergy alert apps for your smartphone, tablet or other mobile devices which can keep you informed on current trigger levels in your area.
You can feel better
Get relief from your allergies in Cary, NC. Contact Wake Ear, Nose And Throat Specialists for more information or a one on one consultation with Dr. Gupta. Call (919) 851-5636.