There’s a significant body of scientific evidence which indicates that allergies are in fact genetic and are passed on from parent to offspring. But again the exact genetic allergy to certain substances is not what’s passed on, only the tendency to develop particular allergies. Allergy is merely a malfunction in the immune system that causes an exaggerated reaction to substances that normally don’t cause any problems. This all adds up to the conclusion that an allergic reaction cannot be genetically programmed but is something that develops over time either through environmental exposures or by the individual themselves.
The most common food allergy is peanut allergy. This is particularly true among infants. If an infant develops a peanut allergy, it will be apparent as a pronounced allergic reaction to almost any form of protein based food. This type of allergic reaction is often coupled with itching and watering of the eyes.
Another example of allergies hereditary is hives reaction to foods such as eggs, milk, and soy. Another example of allergies hereditary is eczema or atopic dermatitis. Eczema is a chronic skin condition that appears as red, itchy, and inflamed rashes. It can also cause bleeding, clogging of the nose and crusting of the lips and the mouth. Again, in both cases the allergy can be traced to the genetic tendency to react to a specific food.
Allergies to environmental substances are also considered allergies. An example is peanut sensitivity which does not appear to be genetically influenced. It can, however, be triggered by exposure to the allergen on a regular basis. Another example is seafood allergies. Although seafood might seem to be a relatively harmless food, if you are sensitive, you may find yourself avoiding it like a plague!
Allergic reactions to foods and the environment are also grouped under allergic reactions. A few examples of this are contact dermatitis which is caused by chemicals like detergents, perfumes, and cleaning fluids. This type of allergy can be quite serious and result in serious illness down the line. Food allergies are also classified under this. If you have an allergy to a particular food that you are used to eating then you might have an allergic reaction to that food.
Allergies are usually hereditary, but it can sometimes be caused by increased exposure to elements that are allergens. For example, cigarette smoke can be an allergen for some people. The increased exposure may then trigger an allergy to cigarette smoke, which could lead to asthmatic symptoms. Similarly, living in a dusty or polluted environment is also linked to asthma in many people.
If you think you might have an allergy, it’s worth getting a test to see whether or not it’s true. You can usually discover this by allergy testing kits that can be bought from your local drugstore. It is then up to your family doctor or allergy specialist to make a diagnosis. The most common allergy test is the skin test, which looks at whether a person has an allergic reaction to particular parts of the skin. Another allergy test that can be performed is from a urine test, which looks to see if your body produces more than normal amounts of various substances when you are having an allergic reaction.
If you do have allergies, there are things that can help. If you feel as though you’re always being bothered by something you can try running outside until your feet start to feel cold or using a humidifier if you can’t stand the dry air. If these measures don’t help then it’s always worth talking to your family doctor who will be able to tell you more about allergies and their causes. He may even suggest that you visit your local hospital for allergy tests to rule out any serious conditions such as hay fever.