Your Guide To Allergy Testing
Millions of Americans live with allergies every day -- could you be one of them? Allergy testing is the diagnostic tool used to determine if you have allergic reactions to common substances, like grass and nuts. The goal of the doctor will be to trigger a mild allergic reaction to make the diagnosis. If you are looking for answers regarding your allergy questions, a doctor may be able to help you.
What Do Allergy Tests Look For?
An allergy test will look for common allergic reactions. These will include allergies to molds, pollen, bug stings, food, animal dander, medication, and more.
What Happens During an Allergy Test?
Allergy testing involves either skin or blood testing. The skin test may involve pricking a bit of the allergen into the skin, usually on the back but sometimes on the arm. This will likely occur several times, as most tests look at several allergens at one time. In some cases, the doctor may recommend an injection of the allergen. Thankfully, you will receive the results quickly.
In some cases, the doctor may recommend a blood test instead of the skin test. For instance, the doctor might feel that you are taking medication that might interfere with the test or that another skin condition will be affected from a skin test. Some allergens are also quite strong, possibly leading to a more serious reaction than intended. These tests may not provide results for several days, so it is slower than the skin test.
What Side Effects Are Associated with Allergy Testing?
As with many types of medical diagnostic tests, there is some risk associated with allergy testing. You may experience an allergic reaction, for example. This usually includes an itchy rash or redness and swelling. Bleeding sometimes occurs as well. Doctors do deem the testing safe enough for both children and adults though.
It is important to note that a positive result from an allergy test is not in and of itself a diagnosis of the allergy. The doctor may opt to perform other tests or to look for other medical answers to the solution. It can sometimes feel like allergies are taking over your life, especially when you are not allowed to eat the same foods you have always enjoyed or even to be near family pets. Talk to your doctor about allergy testing to see if you can benefit from a diagnosis.
For more information, talk to a company like Southern Allergy and Asthma PC.