Allergies refer to a reaction of the immune system to a foreign substance, known as an allergen. Common allergens include pollen, dust, pet dander, certain foods, and medications. When a person with an allergy comes into contact with an allergen, their immune system responds by releasing chemicals such as histamine, which can cause a range of symptoms.
Symptoms can vary depending on the allergen and the individual, but they can include sneezing, runny or stuffy nose, itchy or watery eyes, skin rashes, and difficulty breathing. In severe cases, allergies can lead to anaphylaxis, a life-threatening condition that requires immediate medical attention.
Treatment for allergies typically involves avoiding the allergen whenever possible and taking medications such as antihistamines or nasal sprays to manage symptoms. In some cases, allergy shots or immunotherapy may be recommended to help the immune system become less sensitive to the allergen over time.
It is important to consult with a healthcare professional if you suspect that you or a loved one has allergies, as they can help to determine the cause and recommend appropriate treatment options. By managing allergies effectively, individuals can reduce their symptoms and improve their quality of life.