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What are Allergies?

Itchy eyes, runny nose, sneezes, and sniffles.

There is a lot to be excited about in the springtime, but allergy season is likely not one of them. An estimated 50 million Americans suffer from allergies – about 1 in every 5 people! But what are allergies, and what causes them?

Allergies are caused by the immune system overacting to a normally harmless substance, such as pollen, mold, or dust. These substances are known as allergens. When someone has allergies, their immune system, which usually projects the body from disease by destroying viruses and bacteria, will attack these harmless allergens.

There are many, many symptoms associated with allergies, but some of the most common include:

  1. Runny or stuffy nose

  2. Itchy, dry  eyes

  3. Hacking, wheezing, or coughing

  4. Hives or welts on the skin

  5. Intestinal discomfort

  6. Headache

Allergies most commonly appear in childhood or early adulthood but you can develop them at any stage in life.  If a family member has allergies, there is a good chance you will develop them too, though you may not necessarily become allergic to the same things.

Although there is no way to prevent someone from developing allergies against certain substances, you can help your kids and loved ones stay healthy this season with these tips!

Check out this post below to learn more about staying healthy with allergies!

If you are unsure whether or not a pediatric urgent care can help address your child’s health care concern, visit our When to See Us page  for more information.

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