Allergies are not fun to have. Many people suffer from allergies that span from just miner irritations to life threatening emergencies. Just about everyone has a basic understanding of what an allergy is. But, there is so much more to understand in the world of allergies. Here are five things you don’t know about allergies:
Five Things You Don’t Know
1. Allergies are caused by mistakes in the immune system – Lymphocytes (white blood cells) help protect our body against foreign substances in our body. Lymphocytes are the bread and butter of our immune system. They can spot a foreign substance such as bacteria, viruses, and toxins in our body. They can evaluate the foreign substances and then decide whether or not to attack them. Sometimes Lymphocytes make mistakes and attack non-threatening foreign substances which create allergies.
2. Histamine – Histamines are very important when it comes to fighting foreign substances in our body. Histamine can become very harmful to our body if it is released inappropriately or of too high dosage. If the basophil in the lymphocyte registers the foreign substance as a threat, it sends histamines to battle the foreign substance. But, if the basophil goes haywire, it can send too many histamines which can cause lowered blood pressure, Itching, hives, sneezing, wheezing, nausea, diarrhea, and vomiting.
3. Anaphylactic Shock – “cell fluids dumped into the tissues of the throat can cause the throat to swell shut, leading to anaphylactic shock and death in as little as three or four minutes after exposure to the antigen or the onset of symptoms. Hundreds of people die annually from anaphylactic shock in the United States alone.” (Beach, Steve) An intramuscular injection of epinephrine is the only effective treatment for anaphylactic shock.
4. Immunotherapy – Immunotherapy is risky and a time consuming way to treat people who suffer from allergies. Immunotherapy consists of giving the patient many injections of the allergen that they are suffering from. The beginning dosage of the allergen is small but gradually increases in each injection. The immunotherapy helps the immune system to produce fewer antibodies.
5. Stress – Scientists have conducted tests on patients who suffer from hay fever. The scientists found out that the patients who were under stress had more and bigger flare-ups then those who were not under stress. “There was no significant link between stress and flare-ups on the same day, but a number of people had flare-ups within days of experiencing increased daily stress, the researchers said.” (Preidt, Robert)