If seasonal hay fever is suddenly upon you, or if you notice oral, respiratory, or skin symptoms after eating certain foods or experiencing a change in climate, you are ready for a visit with an allergy doctor. Your allergist is an expert in the triggers for and treatment of seasonal, insect, animal allergies, and chronic conditions like asthma. Here is how to best prepare for a visit with your allergy doctor.
Keep a Detailed Diary of Your Allergy Symptoms
Bring it to your consultation and show it to your allergy doctor. In it, you should record:
- Your allergy symptoms (runny nose, red eyes, wheezing, itchy skin, etc.), where they are located, and what may have triggered them
- How you feel after your symptoms resolve (ex. fatigued, anxious, irritable)
- What helps relieve symptoms (ex. cold compresses, over the counter medication, avoidance of suspected triggers)
Additionally, be prepared to detail your medical history, current medications, and family history. It is especially important to tell your doctor if allergies and asthma run in your family.
Avoid Certain Medications Prior to Your Appointment
These medications include antihistamines, such as Benadryl, and over-the-counter allergy treatments like Claritin and Zyrtec. Your allergist will want to observe your ears, nose, throat, breathing, and skin without treatments.
It is also likely that you will undergo allergy testing–either a blood test or skin prick testing–to determine what substances you are allergic to. So, it is important to allow your body to react as it normally would to suspected allergens.
Compose a List of Questions to Ask Your Allergy Doctor
Your allergy doctor wants you to fully participate in your care. So, be sure to ask about:
- Possible treatments, such as immunotherapy (allergy shots) or oral meds
- Lifestyle changes you could make to improve or even eliminate your symptoms (e.g., wearing a mask when mowing the lawn, eliminating carpeting, and modifying what you eat and drink)
- Which symptoms are dangerous and need immediate medical attention
Arrive on Time, and Dress Appropriately
Or, preferably, come to the office a bit early to ensure quick check-in, completion of documents, and other business matters as needed. Be sure to bring your health insurance care and photo ID, too.
You should also wear loose, comfortable clothing. This includes wearing sleeveless or short-sleeved shirt or top in case you are tested for allergies during your visit.
Allergy Doctor Near You in Northeastern Illinois
For the finest allergy and asthma care in Elmhurst, Downers Grove, Naperville, and Plainfield, IL, contact Oak Brook Allergists for a friendly and very informative consultation. Our three physicians are board-certified and highly experienced in comprehensive and effective allergy treatment plans.
We look forward to helping you manage your allergies and feel your very best!