Allergy is a word which is being heard commonly nowadays. What is this allergy?
Allergy (gk.word allos=other, ergon =reaction) is nothing but an overreaction of the immune system to certain substances which are otherwise considered as harmless. These substances which trigger the reaction are known as allergens. These reactions are acquired, predictable, and at times rapid.
Why does it occur?
Allergic reactions occur due to excessive activation of a type of white blood cells (mast cells and basophils) by a type of antibody called immunoglobulin E (Ig E). Histamine is normally produced by the mast cells in response to allergens.
Causes of Seasonal Allergies
Seasonal allergies are the reaction of the body to the seasonal changes; this may cause hay fever or seasonal rhinitis. Common triggers of hay fever vary from season to season. Some of the important triggers are rapid changes in temperature and humidity.
- WINTER—most outdoor allergens lie dormant. Allergens react to indoor, such as mold, pet dander, dust mites, or cockroaches.
- SPRING—trees are responsible for springtime. Many people react to pollen.
- SUMMER—hay fever gets its name from the hay-cutting season. The grass is the most common trigger for the people with hay fever
- FALL—autumn is ragweed season.
Any indoor allergens cause problems for children because they are inside the home and school for longer periods. Environmental substances and household substances like pesticides, mold, spores, pollen, fruit trees, flowers and grass, dust, animal hairs and, perfumes are some of the common substances that trigger allergies. Exposure to the sun can also cause allergic reactions to some people.
Finally, emotions, mental anxiety, and fatigue also cause susceptibility to allergies. Unmanaged stress leads to allergic reactions, poor digestion can increase allergic reactions. Food additives like sulphates, food colors, monosodium glutamate; deficiencies like low vitamin A, C, and E and many minerals can also cause allergic reactions.
Symptoms of Allergy
The severity and appearance of the symptom depend upon the immunity, type and amount of exposure to the allergen.
- Sneezing, running nose, itching with water and redness of the eyes, itching of the nose, ear problems, skin rashes hives, excess mucus production in the throat, sleep disorders are some of the common symptoms of Allergic Rhinitis
- Food allergies cause tingling mouth, rashes on the face and itching in the mouth, swelling of the lips, tongue, face and Diarrhea and vomiting.
- A severe allergic reaction can cause symptoms like—tightness of chest, breathing difficulty, coughing and wheezing.
Generally as soon as one has an allergic reaction, people tend to overuse the counter medications for allergy and in more severe case steroids but these anti-allergic medicines come with their own complications. Many of them have side effects like drowsiness, dryness of eyes and mouth, impaired performance, sleep disturbances, over excitability in children, etc. Another complication is of habit-forming and body developing resistance to anti-allergies making the body need more and more doses.
Homeopathy for Seasonal Allergies:
Homeopathic medicines can help relieve allergy symptoms, without side effects or habit forming. These medicines not only give relief during an acute attack but also reduce the frequency and intensity of attacks by improving immunity and correcting it’s over stimulation. Homeopathy believes in treating the patient and not the disease. Its medicine is selected by careful individualization and repertorization which gives an effective solution to chronic and long term health problems. Some of the homeopathic medicines for seasonal allergies are:
- Allium cepa—sneezings with running nose burning and eye discharge bland. Very sensitive to the odor of flowers, symptoms worse in bed time
- Arsenicum album—discharge runs in red streak over the upper lip and about wings of the nose. With sneezing, there is profuse watery nasal discharge. Well indicated in hay fever and asthma.
- Arsenicum iodatum—hay fever with fetid, corrosive excoriating, thick and yellow discharge
- Kali Phosphoricum-hay fever, itching in posterior nares. Sneezing at 2 am, eyes burn, sting, swim in tears.
- Nux vomica-distressing longer periods of sneezing, excessive irritation of nose, eyes. Heat on the face as if a hot iron plate were near it.
- Pulsatilla-loss of smell, thick yellow discharge, and the patient is better in the open air. Nasal discharge is bland, stuffing up in the night and copious flow in the morning.
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