An allergy occurs when someone reacts to something, such as pollen or cat hair, that does not affect most people.
According to the website MedlinePlus, the most common symptoms of an allergic reaction are watery eyes, nasal congestion, an itchy nose and throat, and hives. Some patients experience symptoms such as asthma (wheezing sounds that originate in the chest) and difficulty breathing.
Insect bites, certain foods and medications are what most commonly induce these symptoms, which often occur just minutes after having contact with the allergen. The general recommendation is for the individual to take note of these signs and see a physician in order to find proper treatment.
The American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology lists some common allergens and symptoms. While this guide may not include an allergy that is specific to you, it may help you identify some specific cases. Place an “X” alongside those symptoms you believe you may have and share this document with a healthcare professional.
|Tree, weed and grass pollen||Hay fever (allergic rhinitis) that causes nasal drip, sneezing and an itchy nose, eyes and throat.|
|Animal dander (skin scales)||These symptoms are the same as those of pollen allergies. Wheezing and coughing may also be symptoms.|
|Dust mites (small insects that live in your home) and cockroaches||These symptoms are the same as those of pollen allergies. Wheezing and coughing may also be symptoms.|
|Foods, especially cow’s milk, soy, eggs, wheat, peanuts, fish and seafood||Swollen lips or tongue, hives, the feeling that your throat is closing, aphonia, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, wheezing, itchy eyes and anaphylaxis.|
|Latex, sometimes called natural rubber||Itchy skin, a red rash, or the appearance of blisters or lumps. Can lead to anaphylaxis. Poison ivy and poison oak can also cause this reaction.|
|Prescription (such as penicillin) and nonprescription medications||Symptoms can range from rashes and hives to anaphylaxis.|
|Ant bites and bee and wasp stings||Pain, itching and inflammation in the area of the bite or in a generalized area. May also cause anaphylaxis.|