Allergies can make people extremely ill with asthma, eczema or bowel troubles. In rare cases, allergies can be life – threatening. But they are also a form of illness, which the patient can often avoid, once the allergy has been identified. Allergies take so many unusual forms, however, that the causes often go unrecognized by those who suffer.
Allergies occur because in some people the body’s defense against infection is over-sensitive. When foreign substances such as bacteria, dust or some foods enter thhe body they react by producing antibodies, which attack the bacteria to prevent infection. Some unfortunate people make antibodies against normal, harmless substances in their environment like grass pollen.
When an allergic substance combines with antibodies in a person’s body, excessive quantities of histamine and other irritating substances are released in the body, causing certain tissues to swell: especially vulnerable are the skin, the delicate lining of the nose, the windpipe and the intestines.
The main types of allergy are discussed below.

Hay feever only occurs when plant pollen are present in the air in large numbers. A wide variety of pollens may cause hay fever in some people. Victims of hay fever suffer a running nose and sneezing, itching eyes and an it

tching throat. There is no easy escape from pollen. It is carried everywhere on the wind into the heart of cities and inside air- conditioned buildings. People with mild hay fever may find that a drug prescribed by the doctor is sufficient to prevent the worst symptoms and they may then be able to play golf or watch a cricket match. However, severe sufferers must so far as possible stay indoors during the pollen season. They should keep doors and windows closed as much as a possible.
Now a modern injection is available which releases the pollen slowly in the body after nine injections.

Drug allergies are also quite common. There are two sorts. Firs, the true allergies: many drugs may caause a rash; some such as sleeping tablets may cause sensitivity to sunlight. Sometimes drug allergy can cause other reactions such as asthma. The second sort of ‘drug allergy’ can be equally serious: aspirin, for example, can make other allergies catastrophically worse. If a patient is aspirin sensitive, the very first dose of several chemically unrelated drugs used for rheumatism may provoke a severe attack of the patient’s usual allergic disease. What is worse, tartrazine, a yellow dye used in fo

ood manufacture, may also do the same.

Occupational allergies. There are a great many allergies, which are suffered by individuals as a result of exposure to particular substances at work. Bakers, for example, often become sensitive to flour and moulds which grow on the flour. These may cause eczema, a runny nose or asthma. Builders may become sensitive to sawdust’s or cement, which cause eczema or asthma. Paints and glues may cause eczema, a runny nose or asthma. And so on. even office workers may develop eczema, as a result of handling carbon paper or inks or runny nose or asthma due to dust from old documents.

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