Allergies disrupt the lives of millions of people worldwide, and for some people, they can cause severe complications. In fact, more than one in four people across Europe currently suffer from some form of allergy. That's why our GP home doctor service for allergies in Costa del Sol know how important it is for you to understand how to combat your allergies so that you can minimise your reactions.
The most common allergies are often linked to a genetic predisposition, with many members of the same family experiencing the same allergy. This predisposition causes the affected people to develop a hypersensitivity to certain triggers which causes their immune system to react in a way that most, healthy immune systems wouldn't when they come into contact with their particular trigger.
The number one piece of advice that our GP home doctor service for allergies in Costa del Sol always gives is to avoid your allergy triggers whenever you can. Once you know what it is that's triggering your allergic reaction, take the necessary steps to avoid regular and potentially dangerous contact with the allergen.
With allergies like pollen or peanuts, however, avoidance isn't always possible. Pollen lingers in the air we breathe and cannot be removed while peanut traces are often found in many food products that we wouldn't necessarily expect. In these instances, avoidance doesn't work, meaning other measures must be taken.
Peanuts are responsible for one of the most common and also most severe food allergies, which may result in anaphylactic shock – a dangerous, potentially fatal reaction (see below). The only effective treatment is an adrenaline injection; some at-risk patients, such as those with bee or wasp venom allergies, are prescribed with autoinjector pens, which they must keep with them at all times in case of emergency.
The next best thing our GP home doctor service for allergies in Costa del Sol recommends is to stock up on antihistamines. If you know you're going to be around animals for some time, or you know allergy season is coming up, taking antihistamine tablets can help reduce the effect of the allergen on your body. Histamine is a product your body produces in reaction to an allergen and is often what causes the inflammatory or allergic response. Taking over-the-counter antihistamines can block the histamine produced when you come into contact with your allergen and therefore limits the effects of your allergic reaction.
For some more severe allergies, allergen immunotherapy or "desensitisation" may be the best treatment option. Immunotherapy teaches your body to tolerate your allergens by gradually exposing you to increasing doses of your allergen via injections. The treatment is usually carried out over several weeks, months or the course of your life, depending on its success and how severe your allergy is.
For people with nut allergies and other severe allergies, our GP home doctor service for allergies in Costa del Sol strongly recommend having an EpiPen to hand at all times. Should you come into contact with your allergen and feel your symptoms flaring up, and EpiPen could potentially save your life by administering a helpful medication to tackle your symptoms and reaction.
For more information on our GP home doctor service for allergies in Costa del Sol, visit our website.