What are some the different types of allergens in the environment that may cause an allergic reaction? Allergens are substances in the environment that may cause a person's immune system to react in a way that poses uncomfortable signs and symptoms. This reaction of the immune system is more commonly known as an allergy or allergic reaction. There are different types of allergens which are normally harmless substances. Having an allergic reaction is our body's way of showing its sensitivity to a certain substance. These sensitivities vary from person to person.
One of the most common types of allergens that cause allergies in children comes from animals. Many households have pets and parents are sometimes unaware that their children are having some kind of sensitivity to them. Animal allergies are due to the proteins found in an animal's skin, fur, saliva and even urine.
Food products are also some of the types of allergens that are potent causes of allergies. Peanut, tree nut and seafood allergies are some of the common ones. Symptoms caused by food allergies include stomach ache, vomiting, itching or redness around the mouth, difficulty of breathing and others. However, before concluding that the symptoms being experienced are caused by a food allergy, it is advisable to consult a physician for proper diagnosis because the symptoms may also be due to food intolerance. The usual treatment for food allergies is to avoid foods that might trigger an allergic reaction.
Pollen is also one of the common types of allergens. Pollens are microscopic grains coming from different plants. These are important elements for plant reproduction. Pollens transfer from one plant to another through different agents of pollination such as insects, wind and water. Pollen grains that are very light, dry and small are usually the ones that causes allergies. These types of pollen are produced by grasses, trees and weeds and other plants that are produced up to million pollen grains in a day. Because these pollens are very light, they are easily transported by the wind to many places. Moreover, they can also easily enter the body through the nasal passes during inhalation. When the pollen adheres to the nasal mucous membrane, the mast cells present in the area release different substances such as histamine which causes dilation of blood vessels resulting to congestion or swelling of nasal passage.
It is also not a surprise that some people are sensitive to drugs or certain medicines. Drug allergies can be caused by both prescription and non-prescription drugs. The reason for drug allergies is that the chemicals present in the drugs do not go well with the body chemistry. Stopping the intake of the drug is the treatment for this allergy. For some symptoms, the physician may prescribe taking antihistamine drugs to counter the effects of released histamine and non-steroidal drugs to counter inflammation.
Insect stings are also considered types of allergens. Allergies caused by insect stings are particularly more evident during the spring and summer. Stings from bees, hornets, wasps and fire ants are some of the insects that commonly cause allergies. The allergic reaction is characterized by itching and swelling or redness of the affected area. In more severe cases, insect stings are types of allergens that can also cause difficulty of breathing and dizziness.