Do you know the various types of allergies?

Do you know the various types of allergies?

Allergies affect one in 4 Italians and can be of various origins. How knowledgeable are you on the subject?

Do you know the various types of allergies?

Allergies are becoming more and more common . Not only allergic rhinitis , but also severe asthma and severe reactions with the risk of anaphylaxis. On the other hand, however, an inadequate visit to the allergist is often resorted to , convinced that they are victims of allergies that are not present.

Allergies represent a very current and debated topic, but there is still too much confusion , for example, few really know how vast and complex the world of allergies is and many do not have clear ideas about the role of the allergist.

About 1% of all accesses to the emergency room in Italy is due to anaphylaxis and, in particular, to systemic allergic reactions to food , or to drugs and hymenoptera stings .

In young children  the first cause of allergy is food, while in adolescents allergies caused by drugs or by hymenoptera stings are more frequent.

Among the specialists in the sector there is a strong need to clarify, for example, what food allergies are, distinguishing them from intolerances that seem to have almost become a fashion. Recent British research has estimated that one out of three allergy examinations is inappropriate .

What are we allergic to?

Allergic diseases manifest themselves in different ways according to the allergen , that is to the triggering factor, which is at the base: a pollen, a food, the component of a drug, the hair of a pet, the latex, the poison of a insect, etc.

Allergies are complex diseases; they are often mild but still have a major impact on quality of life . The most important risk is anaphylactic shock.

The main types of allergy are:

> food allergies;

> drug allergies;

> allergies to hymenoptera poisons;

> Respiratory allergies, pollen, mites and fungi, for example allergic rhinitis and allergic asthma;

> Contact dermatological allergies;

Of these, the main causes of anaphylaxis are drug, food and hymenoptera sting allergies.

Read also What are cross allergies? >>

Food allergies

Food allergies are an immunological reaction to normally tolerated food proteins. The disorder affects 2-4% of the adult population; the incidence rises to 6-8% in young children . The global perception of food allergy is, however, much higher and reaches a percentage of about 20%.

One of the main confusing topics is the distinction between food intolerance and food allergy. While food allergies are abnormal reactions of the immune system, intolerances are generally caused by a deficiency of digestive enzymes and by toxic or pharmacological mechanisms .

The foods that put you at the greatest risk of food allergies are crustaceans, fish, shellfish, eggs, cereals, soy, peanuts and nuts, celery, mustard, lupins and celery seeds . These foods are responsible for 90% of food allergies.

Drug allergies

They represent one of the possible adverse drug reactions and can cause very serious disorders , up to anaphylaxis.

All drugs can cause allergies, but the main culprits are antibiotics and anti-inflammatories.

Allergies to hymenoptera poisons

Every year, about 5 million Italians are victims of hymenoptera stings; 1 to 8 in 100 people later develop an allergic reaction, even a very serious one. The epidemiological burden of allergies to hymenoptera poisons is therefore quite important and is comparable to that of food allergies.

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