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Information on allergic reactions and LifeTime Electrostatic Filters
There are a countless number of things that can trigger allergic reactions in some individuals. Allergic reactions can be very serious or even fatal and it can occur almost instantly leaving little to react. The body’s own defense system creates a reaction to certain substances. Allergic reactions occur when someone who is sensitive to an allergen, comes into contact with that allergen and experiences very uncomfortable symptoms. Our bodies have a strong line of defense and we often find ourselves fighting our own systems to relieve the symptoms of allergic reactions.
Common allergens that trigger symptoms are dogs, cats, bee stings, dust, dust mites, trees, weeds, molds, and foods, such as nuts, strawberries, and shellfish, which usually start to occur within seconds of exposure and can cause mild to moderate reactions such as, skin rashes, hives, itching, sneezing, or watery eyes. More moderate to severe allergic reactions include difficulty breathing, swelling of tongue, wheezing, nausea/vomiting, abdominal pain, chest pain or tightness, and unconsciousness. Acute anaphylactic allergic reactions happen suddenly and progress rapidly; treatment must be administered within fifteen minutes or death could occur from anaphylactic shock.
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Most allergic reactions occur quickly but some may take up to a few hours, and do not usually occur after a twenty-four hour exposure to the allergen. Allergic reactions tend to be more severe when exposure to the allergen is repeated on different occasions, and each time it requires smaller and smaller amounts of the allergen to cause symptoms. In most cases of environmental and pet allergies, simply taking an antihistamine such as Benadryl, and/or a decongestant will relieve symptoms, and some people also may also require immuno-therapy and asthma treatment in addition to other medications as well.
Substances like shellfish, poison ivy, peanuts, and bee stings should be avoided whenever possible, because more severe reactions usually result when exposure occurs. Some adults and children who have experienced severe allergic reactions in the past, must carry an Epi-Pen in case of accidental exposure. The Epi-Pen contains epinephrine and comes in a pre-filled syringe ready for emergency administration. Simply pull off the needle guard and inject into a large muscle, such as the thigh. The Epi-Pen can be administered right through clothing so there is no need to waste valuable time trying to remove clothing.
After an allergic reaction has begun it is very important to monitor the person. If symptoms do not subside within five minutes and they continue to worsen even after administration of an Epi-Pen, emergency treatment should be sought immediately. Visit the National Library of Health and National Institutes of Health at www.nlm.nih.gov (link provided below) for more information on allergic reactions and answers to other health related questions. Allergic reactions are quite common and it is important that people know what to do in the event one occurs to themselves or someone else – it could be a matter of life or death.