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As the weather warms up allergy season is on the horizon, and you might find yourself sneezing because of what’s in the air. But allergies don’t just come with pollen and the change of seasons. You can actually have allergies to certain foods any time of the year. Food allergies are the result of your body’s abnormal response, thanks to its immune system being triggered by a specific food. How do you know if you have a food allergy?

If you are an adult, you might find yourself with an allergic reaction after eating fish, shellfish, peanuts, or tree nuts, like walnuts. A child, on the other hand, may have an allergic reaction to eating eggs, milk, peanuts, tree nuts, soy, and wheat. As you can see, there’s no shortage of potential foods that can trigger an allergic reaction. In some cases, the reaction may be mild, but a severe allergic reaction can be life-threatening because of anaphylaxis. This potentially deadly allergic reaction is characterized by going into shock, having a sudden drop in blood pressure or trouble breathing. If this is the case and you have an epinephrine autoinjector (EpiPen, Auvi-Q,etc.) for just such an emergency, now is the time to take it. If you do not, however, you’ll want to call 911 for emergency treatment.

Recognize Anaphylaxis Symptoms:

  • Dizziness, fainting or unconsciousness
  • Facial swelling (eyes, lips or throat)
  • Hives, itching, flushed or pale skin
  • Nausea, vomiting or diarrhea
  • Weak and rapid pulse
  • Wheezing from constricted airways

The good news is, you can prepare for an allergic reaction by having a food allergy test! Food allergies may be common, but you don’t have to let them catch you unawares. You can always see our doctor, Dr. John Abroon to be tested for potential food allergies. If you often get a rash, experience itching or find yourself short on breath after eating certain foods, then you likely are allergic to it. If you’re lucky, it can be inconvenient at best, but dangerous if you are not. Dr. Abroon frequently performs a food allergy test on those who suspect they have allergies to certain foods, and it is good to ensure your health and safety.

Food Allergy Tests

One common test our office offers is a skin prick test. It is simple, painless, and minimally invasive. We just drop some liquid food extract onto your skin (your back or forearm). Next, the skin surface is pricked so the extract can be absorbed. If you are allergic, in only 15-20 minutes you’ll notice a raised bump, much like a mosquito bite.

Another food allergy test is taking a blood sample to see if you have immunoglobulin E, an antibody that can trigger an allergic reaction. The results often take a couple of weeks to come in. And finally, the third option for an allergy test is an oral food challenge (more commonly called a trial food-elimination diet). During this more complex test, Dr. Abroon will supervise and monitor your reactions to prevent a more serious allergic reaction from occurring.

If you would like to know more about food allergies or to rule them out, we welcome you to give our team a call today. We are always happy to schedule a visit with our team for food allergy testing in New York, New York. If you are properly prepared, you can avoid experiencing a food allergy reaction!