Food Allergies: Things You Must Know
Food allergies are the immune system’s reaction to certain foods, triggering symptoms that can affect different parts of the body. These allergic reactions are the immune system’s protective response against certain foods they identify as harmful and can range from mild to serious. In some cases, the symptoms can trigger anaphylaxis, a severe allergic reaction. For more information, contact us today or schedule an appointment online. We are conveniently located at 7510 North Forest Drive North Charleston, SC 29420.
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Anaphylaxis is a life-threatening allergic reaction that needs to be treated immediately. Signs and symptoms usually begin as soon as there is exposure to the allergen and may include:
• Difficulty breathing
• An extreme drop in blood pressure
• Feeling dizzy and losing consciousness
• Swelling in the throat and mouth
• Difficulty swallowing
• Low pulse
According to the symptoms, food allergies can be categorized into three types:
1. IgE-mediated – The most common type. Symptoms are triggered within seconds of exposure to the allergen and are caused by an antibody called Immunoglobulin E (IgE). Symptoms of anaphylaxis are more likely to occur in this type of allergy.
2. Non-IgE-mediated–These allergies are caused by other cells in the immune system, not involving IgE. Symptoms often take hours to develop, thus making the diagnosis a bit difficult.
3. IgE and non-IgE-mediated – Some individuals may experience IgE as well as Non-IgE mediated symptoms.
Symptoms of Food Allergies
Some of the most common food allergy symptoms include:
• Skin rash
• Itchy skin
• Runny nose
• Swelling in the face, lips, mouth, or throat
• Shortness of breath
• Sneezing or itchy eyes
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While an allergy can be caused due to several foods, certain foods account for nearly 90 percent of all food allergies. These are:
• Tree nuts
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There is no established cure for food allergies, meaning the one way of prevention is to avoid eating foods you are allergic to. There are several ways to achieve this:
• Reading food labels carefully
• Avoid cross-reactivity and cross-contact among allergic and non-allergic food.
• Learn to recognize your allergy symptoms
• Have the medication ready for an emergency
• Learn how to auto-inject, to avoid delay in receiving the drug, in case of a serious allergic reaction like anaphylaxis.
We at COEM specialize in neutralizing our patients to different food allergies by finding the right dose that can turn off their allergy. Also, our method of allergy testing is not at all painful. Looking for expert and comprehensive treatment for food allergies? Call us or schedule an appointment today with our expert allergists. We serve patients from Charleston, Mt. Pleasant, Summerville, all of South Carolina, Nationally, and Internationally. Patients routinely fly into Charleston to be evaluated by COEM and to enjoy this beautiful city which is a Condé Nast and Travel and Leisure Top Domestic and International Tourist Destination.