Allergies (General)

What are Allergies?

Allergies (general) are a very common condition around the world.

General Allergies

The general symptoms of generalized allergies are:

  • Itchy eyes
  • Watery eyes
  • Itchy skin
  • Sneezing
  • Congested nose
  • Possible wheezing
  • Localized or widespread rash

Seasonal Allergies

Most allergies are considered seasonal and are the result of exposure to seasonal items, such as:

  • Grass
  • Weeds
  • Pollen
  • Molds
  • Pet dander
  • Foods

What are the Symptoms of Allergies?

The symptoms a person experiences greatly depends on the allergen and how severe their personal histamine reaction is. The reaction could be mild, moderate, or severe.

Mild Allergy

  • Localized rash
  • Itching
  • Mild congestion

Mild allergic reactions are usually localized. In general, they do not spread to any other part of the body.

Moderate Allergy

A moderate reaction is usually worse than a mild one. The symptoms from a moderate reaction can spread to other parts of the body, but are not life threatening. The symptoms may include:

  • Widespread itching
  • Difficulty breathing

Severe Allergy

A severe allergic reaction is rare. Usually, one of the symptoms of this condition is anaphylaxis. Anaphylaxis is a life-threatening emergency. The reaction is almost always sudden or occurs within minutes of coming into contact with an allergen and can quickly become more serious. Symptoms of a severe allergic reaction include:

  • Facial itching
  • Eye itching
  • Different degrees of swelling inside the mouth, throat and tongue. These symptoms usually make swallowing and breathing difficult or impossible.
  • Hives of various sizes
  • Pain in the abdomen
  • Cramps in the abdomen and muscles
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting, possibly violent
  • Dizziness
  • Mental confusion

How are Allergies Treated?

The treatment used for allergies will greatly depend on the type of allergy you have and the severity of your allergy. Before your doctor recommends a course of treatment, they will most likely order an allergy test. This involves using a labeled grid to make a small scratch on your back to determine everything you are allergic to and how severe your reaction to the irritant is.

Treatments includes

  • Over the counter allergy medications
  • Prescription medications
  • Antihistamines
  • Decongestants
  • Anticholinergic Nasal Sprays
  • Steroid nasal sprays
  • Eye drops
  • Leukotriene inhibitors
  • Mast Cell Inhibitors
  • Allergy Shots
  • Skin Allergies
  • Dehumidifiers
  • Auto-injectors, such as an EpiPen or similar type medication. Possibly epinephrine if your allergy is severe enough.
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Last Reviewed:
September 11, 2016
Last Updated:
August 30, 2017