You can get conflicting advice on what to do when faced with a bad allergy attack. Here is information on what to do if you’re suffering from a severe allergy attack, depending on the type of allergy and the symptoms you’re experiencing. We’ll also discuss concurrent conditions like asthma that may impact how you treat an allergic reaction.

Physical Contact Rash

A physical contact rash can be treated immediately with hydrocortisone creams applied externally. You can reduce the underlying biological processes triggering the allergy by taking antihistamines. The only exception to this is if the physical rash is the result of something you ate – at which point, you need medical attention.

Digestive Upset

If you ate something you’re allergic to and have begun to feel stomach pains, the best thing to do is seek medical attention if you haven’t already taken an emergency treatment like a shot from an Epi-Pen or equivalent. If you are severely and potentially fatally allergic to something you ingested whether peanut butter or another food allergy, dose up with lifesaving treatment and then seek medical attention.

Trouble Breathing

If you’re only dealing with itchy eyes, sneezing and a runny nose, allergy medication, and an air filter are the best treatment. However, some allergic reactions are far more severe than this.

An anaphylaxis reaction of swelling of the mouth and throat can result in cutting off your air supply if something else makes the allergic reaction worse, such as someone already suffering problems from one allergic trigger is accidentally exposed to another. If this is starting to happen, try to treat it on the way to the emergency room. If someone has both allergies and asthma, the allergic reaction could be triggering an asthma attack. In that case, try to use an inhaler to control the asthma attack while seeking medical attention, whether for the allergic reaction or the asthma attack itself.

Any Other Signs of Severe Anaphylaxis

Always go to the emergency room if your allergy attack involves anaphylaxis, a sudden and intense reaction including swelling, a whole body flushing of the skin, nettle rash, severe pain beyond an obvious cause (bee sting) or blood pressure changes. These severe and often whole-body reactions indicate that the body is fighting the allergen in ways that are life threatening. Always seek medical attention immediately, too, if the person collapses, conscious or not, and go to the emergency room if they lose consciousness.

What to Do If You Have a Reaction and Seem to Get Better

Don’t assume you can stay home even if the severe symptoms seemingly get better, a condition called biphasic reactions. In the cases of severe allergic reactions that are severe and then seemingly lull, the symptoms may roar back due to the root cause and include breathing and blood pressure problems, too. And these latter symptoms are life threatening.

You need to seek medical attention because anaphylaxis puts the body in a hypersensitive state. This means a bee sting that caused you to swell up significantly and temporarily have trouble breathing has left you at risk of dying if you are stung again.

Whether it’s common allergies, food allergies or something more serious like anaphylaxis, it’s very important to know the procedures to prevent complications. Make sure that you keep these instructions on hand so you are well prepared for any eventuality.

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