An allergic reaction can be a frightening experience, because although it is predictable, it is not always avoidable. As if that were not enough, an allergy reaction, particularly a severe one, can cause potentially life-threatening symptoms like difficulty breathing.
That is why it is imperative that you know that to do in the event of an accidental allergen exposure. In this blog post, we will cover the steps that you need to take to help quickly relieve your symptoms should you have an allergic reaction.
If you are experiencing allergic rhinitis, there are two things you can do to get relief:
- Remove yourself from the situation – away from your triggers.
- Take over-the-counter antihistamines.
If your symptoms are severe, you will likely need prescription-strength antihistamines. In such case, you have to see an allergy doctor, who may also give you a decongestant spray to help relieve nasal discomfort and allow for easy breathing.
If you have allergic asthma, make sure to always have a fast-acting inhaler handy. In the event of an asthma attack, do the following:
- Try to move to another place where allergens may not be present.
- Sit upright and breathe slowly.
- Use your fast-acting rescue inhaler: remove the cap, shake it, and then place the mouthpiece between your lips and teeth and keep your lips sealed around the mouthpiece.
- Take slow breaths after each puff and exhale away from the puffer. Have a total of four puffs.
Add another four puffs if you don’t experience relief. If your symptoms still do not improve, call 911.
First-aid treatment for hives involves taking antihistamine medication and applying hydrocortisone cream or calamine lotion to the skin bumps. If you experience other symptoms, such as shortness of breath, wheezing, and swelling of the face, call 911.
If you have food allergy, always have your epinephrine auto-injector or EpiPen with you. To use an epinephrine auto-injector, follow these steps:
- Remove the safety cap.
- Hold the auto-injector in your fist with the needle end pointing down.
- Inject the needle into the middle of the outer thigh until you hear a click.
- Hold it in place for at least three seconds.
- Remove the auto-injector and massage the thigh for 10 seconds.
If you have severe food allergy, you will need emergency medical treatment, even if you already have an auto-injector, so go to your nearest ER or call 911.
Allergy Doctor in Downers Grove, Naperville, Elmhurst, and Plainfield, IL
Don’t let the fear of allergic reactions keep you from living your best life. If you live in Illinois, seek expert care from one of our board-certified allergy doctors here at Oak Brook Allergists. We offer a vast range of solutions for allergies – including immunotherapy, which helps your body build tolerance to certain allergens.
Just as we have helped countless patients in Illinois live well with their allergies, we can help you keep all the sniffles, sneezing fits, itch, and breathing problems at bay!
To schedule an appointment with one of our allergists, call our clinic today at (630) 574-0460 or use our convenient online request form. We look forward to serving you at one of our locations: in Downers Grove, Elmhurst, Naperville, or Plainfield, Illinois!