Allergies are the 6th leading cause of chronic illness in the United States and affect one in six people. Board-certified allergist and immunologist, Jun Yang, MD, at Two River Allergy and Asthma Group in Tinton Falls, New Jersey, is an expert in the diagnosis and treatment of allergies. He works closely with you to develop a plan that helps you get relief from your symptoms and improve your quality of life. To schedule an appointment, call the office or book online today.
Allergies are disorders of the immune system in which an exaggerated response occurs with exposure to a substance, called an allergen, that’s harmless to most people.
People with allergies produce a specific type of antibody called immunoglobulin E (IgE) in response to the normally harmless substance. When the person with allergies comes in contact with the substance, the IgE antibodies stimulate mast cells to release chemicals, such as histamine, to destroy the “foreign” substance.
Though allergies aren’t inherited, you may be more likely to develop the chronic disease if it runs in your family. However, allergies are on the rise. Allergies also increase your risk of allergy-induced asthma.
Though researchers are still investigating the underlying cause of the rapid increase in allergies, it’s theorized that it may be due to immune system sensitivity to synthetic chemicals. Researchers also theorize that the immune system is becoming more reactive to allergens because modern health and hygiene leaves the immune system little to do and is “fighting off” normally harmless substances.
You can develop allergies at any age to a wide range of substances. The most common allergens include:
Though it’s possible for children to outgrow an allergy, it’s not unusual for them to develop an allergy to another substance. There is no cure for allergies, but Dr. Yang offers treatments to control or lessen symptoms.
The release of histamine during an allergic reaction causes a range of symptoms. Common symptoms include:
With a severe allergic reaction, you experience a drop in blood pressure. This is why antihistamines are the mainstay of treatment for allergies.
You can expect a patient-centered evaluation when you come in to see Dr. Yang at Two River Allergy and Asthma Group for an allergy evaluation. He first asks detailed questions about your personal history, including illnesses, family history, and information about your home and school or work environment.
He then performs allergy skin testing. During your allergy skin testing, Dr. Yang places a tiny amount of the suspected allergen on your skin and pricks the surface to monitor for a reaction. You may be allergic if your skin develops a raised, red, itchy bump.
Dr. Yang may also request laboratory tests, such as a blood allergy test that measures the amount of IgE in your blood. Dr. Yang also conducts food challenge tests and elimination diets to identify food allergens. Dr. Yang also performs drug allergy testing and the challenge.
The best treatment for your allergies is avoidance of the allergen. Dr. Yang spends a lot of time talking to you about your allergen and the steps you can take to avoid contact.
However, for certain types of allergies, avoidance may be difficult. Dr. Yang may also prescribe medications to help you manage symptoms, such as:
He may also recommend allergy shots, also called allergen immunotherapy, if avoidance and medications are ineffective. Dr. Yang even offers food immunotherapy.
Not treating your allergies may lead to additional health problems, such as asthma or sinusitis. Skin allergies, such as eczema, can lead to infections and untreated allergy-induced asthma can lead to chronic problems.
For expert care of your allergies, contact Two River Allergy and Asthma Group by phone or online today.