Allergists near me

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What causes allergies?

Allergies happen when your body thinks that harmless substances, like pet dander or peanuts, are actually pathogens that could make you sick. When this happens, your body prompts an immune response - which causes the symptoms like itchy eyes, itchy or runny nose, and scratchy throat that make allergic reactions troublesome.

There is a wide range of things that can cause an allergy as well as a wide range of reactions you can get as a result. You may get hives from a drug allergy, an itchy tongue from a food allergy, sneezing from a pet allergy, or a cough from a mold allergy. Allergy triggers can come in many forms such as airborne particles like pollen or dust, or as a result of a sting.

Allergic reactions are one of the most common conditions allergists treat. These usually occur in the eyes, nose, throat, sinuses, lungs, and skin. Another common condition is hay fever (allergic rhinitis), which refers to allergic reactions that cause a runny nose, watery eyes, sneezing, and itchy throat. These reactions are usually caused by an allergen like pollen, dust, or mold.

While many conditions like hay fever are the result of seasonal allergies and occur during certain times of the year, perennial allergies occur year-round. Asthma, for example, occurs when the airways in your lungs swell and inflame, which causes excess mucus and makes it hard to breathe. Allergens and irritants can also cause skin reactions like eczema (dermatitis) and hives.

What allergy treatment options can an allergist provide?

Though it is best to speak with an allergist for medical advice regarding your particular allergy, there are a few widely accepted allergy testing and allergy services available to keep in mind when looking for an allergy doctor. These include:

- Skin allergy test: This could be in the form of a prick test, a scratch/scrape test, a patch test, or applying the allergen directly to the skin.

- Blood test: Sometimes a skin disease can prevent a skin test from providing accurate results. A blood test can be used to confirm a skin test result.

- Provocation test: A test that applies an allergen in varying amounts to the mucous lining of the nose to see if you have allergies such as hay fever (allergic rhinitis).

Is there a difference between an allergist and an immunologist?

Allergists and immunologists are almost the same thing!

Allergists and immunologists are both trained in internal medicine and to diagnose and treat allergies, asthma, and other disorders of the immune system. Though allergists focus closely on treating allergic diseases, while immunologists specialize in disorders of the immune system, the two specialties have a lot of overlap. They are also certified by the same regulators--the American Board of Allergy and Immunology, the American Board of Pediatrics, and the American Board of Internal Medicine.

What can I expect from my visit to an allergist?

Your consult is your chance to share with a doctor whatever symptoms are on your mind. You should come to your visit prepared to discuss any allergy symptoms you are having, as well as any questions or concerns you may have related to your allergy. Common symptoms include things like hay fever (allergic rhinitis), frequent runny nose or sinus infections (sinusitis), skin conditions like eczema and hives, and persistent cough. If you have visible symptoms, you can show your doctor directly. Your doctor may ask you questions about your current symptoms, such as when they started, how long they've lasted, or how severe are the symptoms. They may also ask you about your medical history and current medications.

After this initial assessment, your doctor may recommend a treatment plan. Immunotherapy is a common treatment that consists of a series of regular allergy shots that reduce chronic symptoms. The doctor could also recommend changes to your lifestyle to reduce your contact with allergens. If appropriate, your doctor may write a prescription for any over-the-counter medications needed to best treat your condition. Prescriptions are always written at the discretion of your doctor. Depending on your condition and its prognosis, your doctor may schedule a follow-up appointment.

Online allergy consults are also available through Sesame. Online allergy consults are a form of virtual care that allergists may offer patients for flexible, efficient care. During your consult, the doctor may ask you about your medical history, symptoms, and any current medications you're taking to design a treatment plan that best meets your needs. If you have visible symptoms, like a rash or hives, the doctor may ask you to position your video camera so that they can see the affected area, diagnose the condition, and recommend the next steps for treatment.

Can an allergist treat my child?

They sure can! Allergists can treat folks of all ages, and children are no different. Pediatric allergists treat a range of pediatric allergy symptoms in children, such as asthma, hives, rash, dry or itchy skin, or wheezing.

Can doctors on Sesame treat anaphylaxis or other emergency allergic reactions?

No. If you are having symptoms of anaphylaxis, or anaphylactic shock, please call 911 immediately.

Anaphylaxis is a rare and potentially life-threatening allergic reaction caused by certain triggers like insect stings or food allergies. Common symptoms, which appear within seconds or minutes of exposure, include rash, vomiting, diarrhea, or shortness of breath. If you are experiencing any of these fast appearing symptoms seek medical attention immediately.

What are the benefits of allergy treatment?

Allergy treatments can help you manage or eliminate symptoms related to allergies. Allergies occur because of the over-production of antibodies by your immune system. An allergist can help you determine what allergens cause your immune system to overreact and, with proper treatment, get back to living the life you want to live without the fuss of allergies.

Is there a way to cure allergies?

The short answer is no. But your symptoms related to the allergy are treatable. Immunology treatments such as sublingual immunotherapy can help decrease or eliminate your symptoms. Whether it's a food allergy or seasonal allergies, Sesame clears your way to care. You don't need insurance to save on quality care.

If you are experiencing severe allergic reactions including mouth swelling, vomiting, hives, dizziness, or difficulty breath, you should dial 911. These types of side effects are often (but not always) caused by insect stings, medication, or food allergies. Anaphylaxis can be a life-threatening emergency, so don't wait if you are experiencing any of these symptoms.

What is the best treatment for allergies?

Because allergies live on a wide spectrum, the best treatment for you depends on your particular allergy and the severity of your allergic response. Your allergist can help you determine what allergies you may have, and develop a plan catered to what is right for you. Some treatments options include:
- Over-the-counter (OTC) allergy medicines such as antihistamines, decongestants, nasal sprays, eye drops, or a combination of OTC medications
- Immunotherapy (allergy shots)
- Acupuncture
- Avoiding triggers

Knowing what you're allergic to is half the battle. In order to determine your triggers, your allergist may recommend skin or blood tests. Once identified, your allergist can help you find ways to best avoid the allergens and can offer treatment options specific to your individual case. Book a virtual allergist consult through Sesame and receive quality care by a licensed professional at a fraction of the cost. Know your price. On your schedule. Yep, it's really that simple.

Can allergies cause a skin rash?

Skin rash is an umbrella term used to describe a wide range of skin reactions. There are countless causes of skin irritation, and skin rashes may take a variety of forms. Most cases of skin rash result in skin that is itchy, red, swollen, scaly, dry, or blistering. The symptoms and appearance of a skin rash will often help determine the irritant causing the reaction.

Atopic dermatitis (eczema) and contact dermatitis occur when the skin has an allergic reaction after exposure to an irritant. Poison ivy, sumac, poison oak, ingredients in creams or lotions, and nickel metal are all examples of irritants that may cause an allergic reaction. Eczema may also be caused by dry skin, genetics, or an immune system condition. Most allergic reactions result in itchy skin, red spots, and scaly patches around the affected area. Dermatitis on the scalp can cause dandruff and hair loss if left untreated.

Dealing with itchy skin? Book an in-person or video allergy/ dermatology consult on Sesame to talk with a real, quality dermatologist or allergist. Doctors on Sesame can address your symptoms, prescribe medication, and offer referrals if necessary. Save up to 60% on skin care when you book a visit on Sesame- no insurance needed.

When is allergy season?

Allergy season is dependent on what allergy you have and where you live. Common allergy seasons include spring and fall for high pollen counts, while mold allergies occur when it's moist. This could mean winter if you live in the midwest, or from winter to spring if you live in the Pacific Northwest. It all depends on your allergy and your location.

You don't have to wait for fall, winter, or spring to arrive to get treatment for allergies. Book a virtual or in-person visit with an allergist without the fuss of an insurance company. You get fair, upfront prices for every service with Sesame. See who you want, when you want. No mark-ups or restrictions. Yep, it's really that simple.

What are some of the most common seasonal allergies?

Spring is in the air - and so are the allergies. Common seasonal allergies include:

Weed pollen: Ragweed, pigweed, tumbleweed, and sagebrush are major hayfever producers. Hayfever from weed pollen can often last from spring till fall.

Flower pollen: Sunflowers, daisies, and chamomile are some common flowers that cause allergies.

Tree pollen: Many trees have pollen that irritates some people including pine, beech, elm, hickory, walnut, sycamore, and pecan.

Grass: Grass pollinates in spring in most regions of the US.

Mold and mildew: Fungi that can spread in moist areas, often in humid places. During wetter months, mold counts rise, often causing more cases of allergy-related symptoms.

Animal dander: It isn't the hair of a dog that causes the allergy. That is a misnomer. It's actually a protein in a dog's saliva and urine that can stick to fur and dander causing the allergy to occur. That is why hairless dogs are less likely to cause irritation because they don't shed the saliva-ridden particles as much as a dog with fur. Animal dander is more common during the winter months.

How can you treat seasonal allergies?

Your allergist might recommend the use of over-the-counter medications including antihistamines, decongestants, eye drops, and nasal sprays depending on your allergy triggers.

For more severe allergies your doctor may recommend allergy immunotherapy (allergy shots, tablets, or drops), which can train your body to become less sensitive to the allergen. Before you begin treatment, your doctor may start with a blood test or skin test to determine which specific allergen you have, and then create a treatment plan specific to you that usually lasts for 3 to 6 months. A secondary maintenance phase can last around 3 to 5 years or sometimes longer.

What are the symptoms of seasonal allergies?

Seasonal allergy symptoms can include allergic rhinitis (sneezing, runny nose, itchy nose, sinus pressure or pain, nasal congestion), and swollen or red itchy eyes. If your symptoms become unmanageable, consider seeing a doctor.

How do I avoid allergies?

Your allergy will dictate how you avoid it. For example, if you have a food allergy your doctor might recommend that you read food labels before eating. Perhaps you're sneezing because of an indoor allergen, such as mold or dust mites. In that case, your doctor might suggest the use of a dehumidifier or air purifier. Seasonal allergies might lead you to check pollen counts in your area. The solution is closely tied to the type and severity of allergy you experience.

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