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What Are the Most Common Allergies?

A Soft-Coated Wheaten Terrier may make a suitable companion for individuals with allergies.
Food allergies to tree nuts have risen in recent years.
An allergy is a physical response to something a person comes in contact with.
Routine cleaning may help reduce allergen exposure.
Allergies to shellfish, like oysters, are common.
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  • Written By: Ken Black
  • Edited By: Andrew Jones
  • Last Modified Date: 24 July 2014
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The most common allergies include pollen and household allergies, such as dust mites, pets and some foods. While most allergies are just minor inconveniences, others can be quite serious. A severe allergic reaction, known as anaphylaxis, may require immediate medical attention. Determining the cause of an allergy may be simple or very complicated, and may sometimes requires testing by a doctor.

Most common allergies wreak havoc with sinuses and mucus membranes. This is especially true of pollen allergens, such as ragweed, flower and tree pollen. Those allergies can cause itchy eyes, runny noses and sore throats. Those who experience these allergies may be miserable during the spring and autumn. For example, ragweed pollen often is at its strongest in late summer.

Common allergies around the house include pet allergies. Some may be specifically allergic to the dander created by cats or dogs, or may be affected by both species equally. These are considered the most common pet allergies, but this is likely simply because these are the most common pets. Many people may be just as allergic to rabbit dander, ferret dander or dander, from other mammals.

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For pet owners, an allergy to an animal may seem like a curse. Fortunately, those who suffer may find their bodies eventually adjust to the allergen caused by the pet, and that symptoms eventually diminish over time. In other cases, some animal lovers may find there is no way to alleviate their symptoms, other than with prescription medication, or by avoiding the allergen altogether. There are also some breeds of dogs and cats that tend to cause fewer allergies than others.

Of all the common allergies, dust mites, or house mites, may be among the most troublesome. This is because they have no season. They live indoors and therefore stay very comfortable year round. They are also in a place most people spend at least eight of every 24 hours -- in a bed. Therefore, they tend to be very troublesome. While most dust mite allergies are minor inconveniences, they have been responsible for fatal asthma attacks.

Food allergens are among the most common allergies capable of producing the most severe reactions. Shellfish, milk, and nuts, especially peanuts, cause the most problems. The proteins, especially in peanuts, can be particularly hard for some people to deal with. In some cases, even the smell of these foods can produce an allergic reaction.

For many types of common allergies, an effective antihistamine is the best cure. This effectively neutralizes the allergen, and provides general relief from most symptoms. This medication can be provided in pill form, or may be injected by a doctor or nurse. Many will find they need constant treatment throughout the allergy season. While this may be an inconvenience, it usually provides enough relief to make things bearable.

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Discuss this Article

anon156494
Post 4

I've got an allergy to nuts and nearly every other major food group there is. May I just say Roxytalks that because of your carefulness people like me get to see another day! For that I am eternally grateful! I wish other people were as thoughtful as you.

Allergies do have a genetic factor as told to me by my immunologist or however you spell it! -Carrie

jlmk
Post 3

Isn't it crazy that people who suffer from allergies, can show symptoms just from the smell of something they are allergic to? I've never heard of such a thing. And, I really don't understand how this is even possible. How can you be allergic to a smell?

roxytalks
Post 2

It seems that peanuts have become the most common food allergy. Everywhere I go, I hear of people, especially children, being allergic to peanuts. All of a sudden, this seemingly harmless little nut, has become an incredibly dangerous, life-threatening object.

My kids go to a "nut free" school, meaning that you cannot bring anything into the school, at any time, that has nuts in it, or has ever had contact with nuts. This allergy is so dangerous, that we are supposed to make sure the kids wash their hands before going to school, if they have had any contact with nut products.

I'm so glad none of my kids have this allergy. I would constantly be a paranoid mess.

heath925
Post 1

There are also a lot of people who are allergic to medications, specifically antibiotics. Unfortunately, I'm one of them.

I have a whole list of antibiotics that I am unable to take. If I do take them, my entire body gets covered with horrible, itchy hives. As uncomfortable as it is to itch all over, I suppose I'm very lucky that I've never had a reaction worse than that.

Sometimes, I wonder if allergies can be genetic, because my brother's list of antibiotics that he's allergic to is even longer than mine. In fact, he is only prescribed an antibiotic if he absolutely needs it. This is because there are so few he can take, the doctors want to save them, in case he needs them for very serious conditions.

It's a scary thing to be allergic to medicines that are supposed to save your life.

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