Your first step is to see a board-certified allergist-immunologist. You can get a referral from your primary care physician or ask for a recommendation from a family member or friend who is seeing an allergist.
At your appointment, your allergist will obtain a detailed medical history, examine you and evaluate your symptoms. Your allergist may perform skin or blood tests to determine what type of allergic disease you have and the causes of your symptoms.
This is the step where you take control of your allergies and get relief from your allergic symptoms.
Why an allergist?
An allergist is a doctor specially trained and experienced in the diagnosis and treatment of allergic diseases and related conditions. These include asthma, hay fever, sinusitis, rashes, hives and certain kinds of allergic reactions to foods, insect stings and drugs.
Every board-certified allergist first completes at least three years of specialty training in either internal medicine or pediatrics, and then completes an additional training program of two or more years studying the diagnosis and treatment of allergic and related diseases. Certification by the American Board of Allergy and Immunology requires not only approved training, but also successful completion of a challenging written examination. Every board-certified allergist thus has credentials in at least two specialties and is qualified to care for both children and adults.
As a result, the board-certified allergist-immunologist has the advanced training and expertise in the techniques of finding out what is causing an allergic reaction and how best to solve the problem.
Researchers are now studying ways to go beyond today’s methods of treating allergies. We soon may have better and new ways to block the body’s allergic response by reducing or inhibiting the release of histamine and other chemicals that cause allergic reactions. Also, a large group of scientific researchers are working in developing the purest, strongest and safest vaccines for allergy.
When these treatments become available, you can be certain that allergists-immunologists will be at the forefront of their use.
But you don’t have to wait for the future. Today, you can put the misery of allergies out of your life with the help of an allergist.
Living with Allergies
Living with allergies means working to make your environment as free of allergens as possible.
The first-line treatment for anaphylaxis is epinephrine (adrenaline).
Immunotherapy is a preventive treatment for allergic reactions to substances such as grass pollens, house dust mites and bee venom.