Coughing, sneezing, and clogged sinuses can make life a bit unbearable when you're dealing with allergies. Chris Gaffga, MD, and Jamie Guillot, APRN, at Bayou ENT in New Iberia, Louisiana, can help you manage your allergies, whether they're seasonal or brought on by pets, the environment, or food. Call the office or book an appointment online today.
An allergy is an immune system reaction. It occurs when your body comes in contact with something it thinks is foreign and dangerous, and sends out your immune-fighting cells to defend against it. However, the reaction is a false alarm.
While doctors aren’t sure exactly why allergies affect some people and not others, it’s believed to be related to genetics and the environment.
There are a number of substances that cause allergies. These substances are referred to as allergens.
Common allergens include:
An allergy can occur at any time.
Treatment for an allergy may depend on the allergen causing an allergic reaction. To pinpoint the particular allergen, Bayou ENT may recommend allergy testing if you don't already know what you're allergic to. Allergy testing may involve a skin prick test or a blood test.
Once the allergen is identified, the team may recommend a combination of lifestyle changes and medication to help you manage your allergies and reduce symptoms.
Depending on the allergy, they may recommend you eliminate the allergen from your environment. This is easier to do with allergens such as food and pet dander.
However, if you’re allergic to pollen or weed, Bayou ENT may suggest changes you can make at home to limit exposure, such as keeping your windows closed when counts are high.
Antihistamines and decongestants may also be recommended to help reduce symptoms.
Immunotherapy is a technique aimed at decreasing your body’s sensitivity to the allergen by giving your body small doses over a set period of time. This way your immune system gets used to the “foreign invader” and stops fighting against it, helping to reduce symptoms.
Immunotherapy can be given as a shot or as a sublingual medication (under the tongue).
Immunotherapy is used to treat pollen, grass, bee, and dust mite allergies.
If you need to get a better handle on your allergies, visit Bayou ENT. Call the office today or make an appointment online.