More than 50 million people in the United States have allergies that can be attributed to weight gain, fatigue, muscle or joint pain, hypertension, indigestion, anxiety, depression, etc. Centerville Medical Center in Dallas, TX prides itself on delivering the best possible patient-centered care in a comfortable, nurturing environment. Our allergists are highly trained in the latest advances in the diagnosis and treatment of allergies and asthma. This allows our team to provide the most comprehensive treatments available today.
Allergy treatments aim to reduce or eliminate some of the stressors that are overwhelming your immune system. Our goal is to decrease or eliminate symptoms and decrease reliance on prescription medications. We offer broad spectrum immunotherapy, which can be administered in the form of sublingual drops, and injections.
What Causes Allergies?
Allergies occur when the body’s immune system reacts to otherwise harmless elements of our everyday environment like dust mites, mold, animal dander, grass, pollens, airborne chemicals, and even certain types of food. This allergic reaction from your immune system causes an over-production of antibodies, and your cells then release histamine. It is also what causes the common symptoms we often associate with allergies, such as itchy, watery eyes.
Common Allergy Symptoms
The list of symptoms caused by allergies is longer than you might think. Primary signs of allergies include:
- Runny or congested nose
- Watery and itchy eyes
- Frequent ear infections
- Sinus headaches
- Nasal polyps
- Conjunctivitis (eye irritation)
- Muscle/joint pain
- Mental problems such as confusion, slow thinking, depression, and forgetfulness
- Respiratory effects including endless colds, chronic cough, recurrent bronchitis
- Digestive issues such as bloating, indigestion, and IBS
- Weight gain
Unfortunately, many individuals will mistake their allergic reactions for common illnesses like a common cold, an ear infection, or a standard cough. If these conditions last for weeks on end and show no signs of improvement, it is likely that there is another true cause at work.
Allergy symptoms can interfere with daily activities, and may even lead individuals to miss school or work as they attempt to treat their symptoms with extra rest. While this solution may temporarily relieve a person’s allergy symptoms, only proper testing and care from Dr. Osuagwu will be able to provide long-lasting effects.
A More Effective Approach to Allergy Testing
All patients will begin by completing an initial consultation with Dr. Chuck. During this visit, Dr. Chuck will ask many questions to determine the individual’s medical history, specific symptoms, and the health history of their family. All of these factors are incredibly important in helping to identify the exact cause of a patient’s symptoms. In cases that do appear to be the result of an allergic reaction, Dr. Osuagwu is likely to order a few additional tests to find out which particular allergens are affecting the patient.
At Centerville Medical Center, we use simple blood tests to help uncover what triggers a patient’s allergy symptoms. These tests are able to utilize a small blood sample from the patient to analyze the volume of allergen-specific antibodies within the blood. These antibodies develop as the body reacts to a unique allergen, meaning that the type and amount of antibodies present within the person’s blood will be able to tell how severely they are affected by that allergen. Allergy blood tests can be used to diagnose both food allergies as well as those within the patient’s everyday environment.
Common Treatment Options for Allergies
The goal of allergy treatment is to reduce or eliminate your symptoms by decreasing the stress that allergens place on your immune system. Your treatment plan is individualized based on your test results. This plan often involves a multi-faceted approach that may include avoidance of suspected allergens, environmental and lifestyle modifications, prescribed medications, and immunotherapy. Conventional interventions like antihistamines and nasal steroid sprays/inhalers are often recommended at the start of your treatment course, with the long-range goal of lessening or eliminating your reliance on these measures.
Additional blood testing is often an essential part of the treatment process, as these tests will be able to determine the effectiveness of various treatment options, and whether new options should be explored to offer better treatment.
Allergy immunotherapy builds up blocking antibodies by repeated exposure to allergens, reducing your allergic response and possibly eliminating the allergy altogether. When allergen avoidance and medications do not successfully control your allergy symptoms, Dr. Chuck may recommend allergy immunotherapy. Through shots or oral drops, Dr. Osuagwu can change your body’s response to the problem allergen over time. Allergy immunotherapy can improve or eliminate symptoms, as well as reduce or eliminate the need for medications and future treatment.
You Don’t Have to Live with Allergies when there is Help to Control Them
Our team is standing by and ready to assist you with comprehensive allergy testing and treatment. Contact our experts today to get started.