Incidence:
Each year, at various times in the United States , an estimated 1/3rd of the population experience a miriad of unpleasant symptoms that directly affects their personal sense of well being. Millions of people are afflicted with adverse symptoms that influence their quality of life and indirectly affect their friends, family members, and co-workers. These people all have inhalant allergies, which is an adverse response to normally harmless pollens (grasses, weeds, and trees), molds, dustmites, household insects, and animal danders.

Immunology:
The immune system of the allergic patient, due to a complex series of reactions after initial exposure to one or more of the above allergens, recognizes these elements as a health threat. Then specific cells in their body begin a cascade of events that ultimately causes the release of many chemical mediators into the blood stream. The body's response to these mediators produce the symptoms of inhalant allergy: nasal congestion, headache, sneezing, runny nose, sinus pressure, itchy or watery eyes, and fatigue.
Inhalant allergies can affect all ages, from young children to the elderly, and can occur at any time in the life cycle. Some people experience  year round (perennial)  allergy symptoms; others are only bothered a few weeks or months of the year ( seasonal) with allergy symptoms. Each person, based on their immune system, can react to the same inhalant allergen with a unique and totally different symptom response. This is why the individual allergy history and a precise diagnosis is important for effective treatment of inhalant allergies.

Treatment Options:
Fortunately, many over the counter and prescription medicines are now available to provide symptom relief for most allergy sufferers. Oral antihistamines, decongestants, and nasal  (antihistamine or topical steroid sprays) medications are sold in most drugstore pharmacies. These medicines are often effective in providing symptom relief for many allergic people. 

Unfortunately, some patients do not respond to allergy medications or can't take them due to side effects or adverse interaction with medications they are required to take for other health conditions. These people are offered allergy testing (blood or skin tests) that identifies their specific inhalant allergies. These results allow preparation of an allergy serum that is administered by weekly injection or sublingual drops. The patient, over several years time, then gradually decreases their sensitivity to the inhalant allergen by producing a blocking antibody that diminishes or prevents the adverse response to that allergen.

If you have inhalant allergies or have had prior allergy testing and treatment but are still plagued with allergy symptoms, please call our office for an appointment with Dr. Sciacca. 

For more information about inhalant allergies 

4501 Southlake Pkwy
Suite #200
Hoover, AL 35244