Eye Allergy When To See A Doctor
Your ophthalmologist will examine your eyes to see if you have an allergic conjunctivitis or infection so that suitable therapy can be given. They can typically tell whether you have allergic conjunctivitis and refer you to visit an allergy clinic. They’ll look for symptoms of eye allergies like enlarged blood vessels on the eye surface with a slit-lamp microscope.
Your ophthalmologist may examine your eye for a specific white blood cell type. If your allergies are severe or if it is unclear whether you have allergic conjunctivitis, they will do so. They’ll gently scrape a small portion of the conjunctiva and look for white blood cells there.
Conduct Your Own Research
Another part of preparing for an appointment is doing research. I like to know what my options are for treatment and the technical terms that I may encounter. Knowing some basic information can speed the conversation with your doctor and will ultimately help you make more informed decisions.â¯
It is important to note that not all sources are the same, in fact, far from it. Dr. Google can take you down uninformed and fear-mongering paths, so being mindful of the source is critical. Excellent places to start areâ¯organizations, associations, podcasts, or thisâ¯List of Allergy Terms.â¯In the case of anecdotal information, check to see whether the person has any bias or connections to companies or brands that could sway his or her opinion.â¯
During the research phase, write down any questions that arise. No topic is off limits when it comes to your health, so ask about anything from potential treatments to symptoms and diagnosis. When you present this information to your healthcare provider, do so as a discussion, and remember that reading a handful of articles does not make you an expert.â¯
There is a balance between being informed and being too aggressive. Remember you are going to your healthcare providers for a reason, and that should be because you trust them! Itâs important to find healthcare providers that you can have collaborative relationships with. At the end of the day, finding the right path for you stems from a fruitful conversations with your providers.
When To Call 911 Immediately
- you experience hives or swollen lips or tongue along with difficulty breathing
- you experience changes in consciousness after eating
- you experience two or more of hives, swollen lips, low blood pressure , or abdominal symptoms after eating
- you have an asthma attack after eating that doesn’t respond to your normal rescue medication, especially if you are also experiencing skin symptoms or swelling
These symptoms can indicate a severe allergic reaction called anaphylaxis. Anaphylaxis, or anaphylactic shock, is a life-threatening reaction that’s sometimes triggered by food allergens. Severe asthma attacks also require immediate attention from a medical professional if they do not respond to rescue medication.
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Should I See An Allergist Or Ent For Allergies
For a person without allergies or who only experiences mild symptoms the role of an allergist might be unclear. Many people dont understand the complexity of diagnosing and treating allergies in children and adults. Skilled immunologists like Dr. Chacko can properly diagnose issues and provide various treatment options, including immune system desensitization to prevent dangerous allergic reactions.
The path to becoming an allergist is similar to that of other physicians working in the medical field. Typically, the process involves four years of undergraduate study, four years of medical school, then multiple years of residency alongside experienced doctors. This reveals the level of skill, experience and knowledge required to treat allergies successfully.
Similarly, becoming an ENT doctor requires many years of studying and residency, along with a final state exam. This period of study and work prepares an ENT for the situations they deal with on a daily basis. In some cases, an ENT doctor may choose to spend another one to two years training as an allergist. However, this specialization is often used to help patients struggling with a range of complex symptoms that extend beyond immune system response.
When To See A Doctor Regarding Severe Allergies
Allergies that are severe and result in anaphylaxis can be life-threatening and require emergency attention and treatment. If a severe allergic reaction to something is experienced and has the potential to occur again, the affected person may need to carry an EpiPen at all times . When the symptoms appear, the shot should be administered immediately.
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Who Develops Asthma Or Allergies
Asthma and allergies can affect anyone, regardless of age, gender, race or socioeconomic factors. While its true that asthma and allergies are more common in children, they can occur for the first time at any age. Sometimes allergy symptoms start in childhood, disappear for many years and then start up again during adult life.
Although the exact genetic factors are not yet understood, there is a hereditary tendency to asthma and allergies. In susceptible people, factors such as hormones, stress, smoke, perfume or other environmental irritants also may play a role.
I wonder how many other people out there are going about their lives, maybe even pushing themselves like I was, unaware that they have asthma or another respiratory condition.
What Can I Do If I Am Prone To Sinus Infections
Ways to help mitigate the symptoms of chronic sinusitis include:
- Consult with a Board-certified allergist to help determine if allergies are a cause for your symptoms.
- Application of a warm towel to the head, neck, and face to ease pain and pressure.
- Use of saline spray to keep nasal passages clean and decongested.
- Use of OTC decongestants, although these are not recommended as part of a long-term treatment plan.
- Use of a vaporizer or humidifier, especially during the dry winter months. Just be sure to clean the unit routinely, as unclean it poses more risks than benefits.
- Get a better understanding and management plan for allergies, which can be a trigger.
- Try to avoid smoke like cigarettes or even cars, which can inflame the nasal passages.
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When Youre Not Sure If You Have A Cold Or Allergies
Colds and allergies specifically allergic rhinitis can be easily confused, since both feature sneezing and runny noses, says Dr. Menkes. A doctor can help you determine if your symptoms are triggered by environmental allergens like dander, pollen, dust mites, or tobacco smoke or if you have a cold, or inflammation of the upper respiratory tract caused by one of more than 200 viruses. Colds and allergies are treated differently, so knowing exactly what youre experiencing is important in choosing which medicines to take. Taking cold medicine when youre actually suffering from allergies can be not only ineffective, but a waste of money, says Dr. Menkes.
If youre experiencing itching in your eyes or nose, watery/red eyes, or swelling/puffiness in your throat, ears, or eyelids, youre probably experiencing allergies. If you have a nagging cough, a low-grade fever , or feeling just generally sick and rundown, then its more likely a cold. Either way, checking in with a doctor can let you know for sure.
When To See An Allergist
Allergists/Immunologists are highly trained specialists that diagnose, treat, and manage allergic inflammation of all types through nonsurgical methods.
Allergies are caused when the immune system decides that an otherwise harmless substance is now a threat . Symptoms can be mild or severe, and in some cases, can lead to a life-threatening reaction called anaphylaxis when triggered by foods, stinging insects or medications. Allergic reactions to environmental substances are very common and usually cause recurrent nasal congestion, uncomfortable facial pressure, nasal drainage, throat clearing, and/or sneezing. Many people with environmental allergies frequently complain of having chronic sinus headaches or sinus pain.
There is no doubt that allergies can have a major impact on the quality of life for people of all ages. Unfortunately, many people struggling with allergic nasal or sinus problems do not realize their symptoms are due to allergies and believe that their condition is untreatable. Fortunately, these symptoms can usually be effectively managed or even prevented with an Allergists help.
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Common Reasons To See An Allergist/ Immunologist Include:
- And more
Putting it all together
Allergists/immunologists and ENTs often work together to maximize control of nasal/sinus congestion and its entirely possible you may require evaluation from both specialists. Allergists will often refer patients to ENTs when surgery is needed and ENTs often refer patients to allergists when a formal allergy assessment is required.
Allergies are not the only cause of nasal symptoms. So if you have a known structural problem or suspect one, then an ENT specialist would be a good first choice. But if you suspect that you have a sinus or breathing issues related to allergies or asthma, consider seeing a Board Certified Allergist/Immunologist who can help diagnose, treat, and effectively control your symptoms through non-surgical methods.
Signs You Should See An Allergy Doctor
Not everyone who has allergies needs to see an allergy doctor, but many do. You know its time to schedule with a specialist when you struggle to control your allergies with over-the-counter antihistamines. An allergy specialist can prescribe different treatments that can ease or even eliminate your symptoms. At Wyndly, our allergy doctors are available 24/7 to help you with your allergies. Schedule a consult with our doctors to get started today!
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What Are The Types Of Allergy Tests
Before an allergist can prescribe an allergy treatment, you must undergo allergy testing. There are two different types of allergy tests. The traditional method is called a skin prick test and is administered in an allergists office. An allergy specialist places allergen extracts on the skin of your forearm or back. Each drop has a different allergen in it pollens, danders, venoms, and food. Then the specialist pricks the skin under the drop. If an allergy exists, a red, itchy hive develops.
The second type of allergy test is a blood test. These tests identify environmental allergens, like dust, dander, and pollen. In a lab, this can require a vial of blood, but blood spot finger prick testing is also available. Because they only require a single finger prick, they can be done from the comfort of home!
At Wyndly, we can mail you our at-home allergy test kit with step-by-step instructions. If you need assistance with the test, just call or text us, and we will walk you through the process. Once the test is complete, send it back to us in the prepaid envelope. As soon as we get the results, one of our allergists will be in touch to discuss your personalized allergy profile.
When You Have Other Health Problems
Its important to see a doctor if you have other health problems like high blood pressure, enlarged prostate, diabetes, heart disease, or kidney disease, says Dr. Menkes. Not all over-the-counter drugs are safe to take for people with these conditions. Talking to a doctor can ensure youre not putting your health in danger by taking the wrong medicine.
If youre suffering from allergies OR a cold, MDLIVE is an easy, convenient way to talk to a doctor without having to wait days for an appointment. Our doctors can talk to you about your symptoms, give you a diagnosis, and if a prescription is needed, send one straight to the pharmacy of your choiceall from the comfort of your own home.
Contact MDLIVE for a consult with a board-certified doctor via secure online video, phone, or the MDLIVE App today.
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When To Visit A Doctor Regarding Seasonal Allergies
The symptoms of hay fever can often mimic the symptoms of a cold. This includes swollen eyes, congestion and a runny nose. The majority of these symptoms can be self-managed at home and with over-the-counter medications . However, should the symptoms persist or progress, becoming unmanageable, then a doctor should be consulted.
Is It Time To See An Allergy Doctor
Sneeze, cough, cough, blow your nose, rinse and repeat again. Does this sound like your life lately?
If so, maybe what youre wrestling with is not just a common cold. Perhaps its time to make an appointment with an allergy doctor.
You might think: But Ive never had allergies. Or: I feel too sick for this to be fodder for a visit with an allergy specialist. But rest assured, severe seasonal allergies can be a chronic battle, and one that stops you in your track. Here are a few signs its time to visit an ENT allergist.
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Can An Allergist Help With Sinusitis
Absolutely. Board-certified Allergists are physicians who have received substantial training in the nonsurgical treatment of chronic sinus issues. Sinusitis, is due to an inflammation in the tissue of the sinuses that can be caused by allergies or microbes, and sometimes both. When sinuses become obstructed, germs fester and can cause an infection, congestion, and facial pressure. Your allergist can help diagnose the root causes of your symptoms and provide a regimen of non-surgical treatments to prevent recurring sinus infections or allergic reactions.
Signs You Should See An Allergist
For some people, the triggers of an allergy may be clear. For example, eating certain foods such as peanuts, tree nuts or shellfish might provoke an immediate allergic response. The lips and mouth may swell and tingle, plus bloating or a skin rash could also appear. In other cases, dust allergies or other environmental issues can be more difficult to pinpoint. Pay attention to some of the following symptoms.
- A runny nose
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Choosing The Right Allergy Doctor
When youve never seen an allergy doctor, it can feel overwhelming trying to find the right practitioner. There are allergists, ENTs, otolaryngologist, immunotherapists, and so many more. Heres how to find the best provider for you:
- Ask your friends, family, and network for referrals
- Research the physicians credentials and experience
- Read patient reviews online
- Consider capabilities, including telehealth and on-call services
Take these aspects into consideration before scheduling your first appointment with an allergy specialist. The relationship with your allergy doctor lasts for years, and you want to make sure theyre the right doctor for you. At Wyndly our dedicated doctors take the time to learn about your allergy history and are available for 24/7 support. Schedule an allergy consult to get started with your personalized treatment plan today!
Rule Out Other Conditions
Some disorders are often misdiagnosed as food allergies. Also, food intolerance is often confused with allergies. Food intolerance is your body’s response to what you eat. For example, people who are lactose-intolerant react to milk products. As a result, they experience abdominal pain due to gas. Although the symptoms may be similar to those of a food allergy, they should not be confused.
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Your Colds Last Forever
Does it seem like you can never shake the sniffles? Beyond the fact that a constant common cold is a miserable state of being, have you considered that it may not be a cold at all?Common natural allergens rear their ugly heads year-round in certain climates. You might just be living in such a region, and if you are affected, the issues are unsurprisingly constant. You may just be one of the 50 million-plus Americans who experience various natural-born allergies each year.
What An Allergist Can Do To Help
Many seasonal allergy sufferers dont actually know what exactly they are allergic to, making it difficult to avoid these triggers. To resolve this issue, your doctor may order an allergy test to narrow down potential offenders. Additionally, your allergist might ask about your daily habits and lifestyle and take note of how these details align with your allergy symptoms. From here, the doctor can present different treatment options and lifestyle changes that will let you breathe easier in the spring season. If you arent sure whether or not you should see an allergist about your springtime allergies, consider the questions below:
- Does over-the-counter medication fail to control your allergy symptoms?
- Do you regularly experience respiratory infections when allergies kick up?
- Have you ever had a severe allergic reaction that led to anaphylaxis?
- Do you have asthma or other known allergies?
- Do seasonal allergies disrupt your nightly sleep?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, consider scheduling an appointment with a doctor to discuss your symptoms. MeMD makes it convenient to connect with a fully qualified, board-certified medical provider from the comfort of home to get the prescription medications you need to control your allergies, along with lifestyle tips to help you avoid contact with allergens and irritants.
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How Does A Doctor Treat An Allergy
Once an allergy has been identified, possible treatment options include:
- Avoidance: if possible, the doctor will help you create ways of avoiding the allergen
- Emergency epinephrine: if allergy symptoms are severe the doctor may provide an EpiPen to be carried everywhere as an emergency shot that reduces symptoms until further treatment can be provided
- Immunotherapy: this involves a series of injections being administered over the course of a few years in order to try and reduce the allergic reaction
- Medications: a doctor may prescribe pills, nasal sprays, or eyedrops, in order to alleviate the allergy symptoms and reduce your reaction
When You Need Them And When You Dont
Allergy tests may help find allergies to things you eat, touch, or breathe in. They are usually skin or blood tests.
However, allergy tests alone are generally not enough. It is important to have a doctors exam and medical history first to help diagnose allergies. If the exam and medical history point to allergies, allergy tests may help find what you are allergic to. But if you dont have symptoms and you havent had a medical exam that points to an allergy, you should think twice about allergy testing. Heres why:
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