Exaggerated reactions of the immune system to certain allergens (allergic triggers) are called allergies. The spectrum of reactions varies from reddening of the skin to swelling, itching, cough, runny nose and eye symptoms to circulatory problems or shortness of breath. They are caused by a wide variety of pathogens such as certain food components, e.g. proteins, medicinal substances, house dust, animal hair, wasp stings, metal alloys or pollen. More than 20,000 of these allergens are already known. They can be swallowed by touching, breathing or eating.
The allergic person’s immune system overreacts to these normally harmless substances, treats them as aggressors, and then makes antibodies.
As soon as the tissue hormone histamine and other substances are released, this leads to the described local irritation or inflammatory reactions.
Allergies develop many different forms of the disease. Extremely unpleasant, but relatively harmless are skin reactions that can range from redness to weeping eczema.
Asthma sufferers suffer from wheezing, coughing and shortness of breath. Inadequate treatment leads to a huge drop in productivity. This disease can also be caused by hay fever.
Allergy to pollen or hay fever is one of the most common allergies. About 12% of the population is now affected, compared to only 1-2% in the late 1920s.
Through contact with certain pollens, an immune response occurs in the mucous membranes of the respiratory tract in those affected. Various pathogens can penetrate unhindered and, due to the weakened immune system, spread freely in the body.
Cross-allergies are a special option in which the patient reacts not only to the original allergen, e.g. birch pollen, but also of similar substances, for example in apples or nuts. Antibodies cannot distinguish between them.
Hygiene in young children should not be overdone to prevent allergies. However, they should not be exposed to all irritants. The most important rule for allergy sufferers is to avoid allergens