Patient's Complete Guide to Skin Allergy

Overview of Skin Allergy

Our immune system responds to different stimuli. It not only protects us from foreign entities but also protects us from our internal environment. An allergy is the most common response by our immune system to any stimuli.

A skin allergy is also known as (Jild ki Allergy / جلد کی الرجی) is the reaction of our immune system causing it to release antibodies to fight off the invaders known as allergens. The skin usually becomes irritated, red, itchy, and bumpy in this response. In some cases inflammation is seen, in others, the red, itchy skin is the sign of a skin allergy. An allergic reaction can cause severe itching, inflammation, rash, redness, hives, and swelling. A skin allergy can be caused by many things including food and certain illnesses or infection. Eczema and hives are the most common types of skin allergies.

Skin Allergy Meaning in Urdu

جِلد کی الرجی ایک عام طبی مسئلہ ہے جو بہت سے لوگوں سے شکار بناتا ہے۔ جب جسم کا مدافعتی نظام غلطی سے ایسے مارمونز کے خلاف اثر ظاہر کرتا ہے جو نقصان دہ نہیں ہوتے تو ایسے عمل کو الرجک ری ایکشن کہا جاتا ہے۔ جِلد کی الرجی کی وجہ سے جِلد پر سرخ دھبے، خارش، جِلد کی گرمی، اور سوزش لاحق ہو سکتی ہے۔ اس کے علاوہ الرجی کی وجہ سے جِلد پر پھنسیاں بھی نمودار ہو سکتی ہیں۔ جِلد کی الرجی سے نجات حاصل کرنے کے لیے عمومی طور پر اینٹی الرجک ادویات استعمال کی جاتی ہیں۔

Prevalence of Skin Allergy

In Pakistan, the prevalence of different allergic diseases is about 66.1 percent with more than 2.4 million people getting a vaccine or allergen shot.

Signs and Symptoms of Skin Allergy

Skin allergy symptoms vary according to the type of reaction. Some of the symptoms are as following:

  • Redness
  • Swelling
  • Blisters
  • Bumps
  • Scaly patches
  • Welts
  • Cracking
  • Burning or stinging
  • Rashes

Types of Skin Allergy

The following are the most common types of skin allergies:

  • Eczema

    Eczema is also known as atopic dermatitis. Eczema causes itchy, dry, and irritated skin. Red patches can form on highly irritating skin. It is more common in children than in adults. It can be caused by several factors including genetics and environment. Certain foods, cosmetics, or stress can cause eczema to flare up.
  • Contact Dermatitis

    Anything that touches the skin and causes a reaction is concluded in the term contact dermatitis. Substances act as an allergen and when in close contact with skin cause a rash. For instance, metals such as nickel or plants such as poison ivy cause an allergic reaction. Sometimes the allergy can be caused by pollen in the air, or new soaps and lotion.
  • Hives

    Hives are raised itchy blisters, welts, or bumps. Hives can be triggered by contact dermatitis or by certain medications and insect bites. Hives appear as soon as the immune system reacts to the allergens and usually tend to go away on their own in a few hours or days. It is also known as Urticaria.
  • Angioedema

    It is a deep swelling in the skin. The most common area of swelling in the eyelids, lips, and throat. It usually happens in combination with hives.

Causes of Skin Allergy

Skin allergy is caused by the response of the immune system to allergens. It irritates the skin along with redness and itching. Other factors that cause skin allergy are as follows:

  • Fragrances
  • Metals such as nickel
  • Medications
  • Latex
  • Poison ivy
  • Chemicals
  • Preservatives

Risk Factors of Skin Allergy

The risk factors of skin allergy are as follows:

  • Previous Family History

Family history such as records of hay fever, hives or eczema can make a person more susceptible to this medical condition.

  • Children

Children are likely to develop skin allergies.

  • Asthma

People who have asthma are more prone to the development of skin allergies.

Health Complications of Skin Allergy

Skin allergies can increase the risk of the following medical conditions:

  • Anaphylaxis

 In case of allergies, a person is at an enlarged risk of allergy-induced reactions. Certain foods, medications and insect stings are the triggers for skin allergy.

  • Asthma

Asthma is a disease in which the immune system affects the airways and breathing patterns. People who are allergic to airborne particles often suffer from this condition.

  • Sinusitis

Allergies and fever increase the risk of sinusitis or other types of infection.

Prevention

Given below are certain preventive measures that can decrease the risk of skin allergies:

  • Make sure to avoid known triggers.
  • Keep a record of allergies both previous and new
  • Wear your medical alert bracelet

Diagnosis

For a complete diagnosis, the doctor asks for symptoms you are suffering from along with any medical history. A physical examination is done and the following tests can be performed for determining the type of allergy:

  • Skin Prick Test: Skin is put in contact with certain substances to see whether it causes an allergic reaction or not. In some cases, hives appear.
  • Intradermal Skin Test: Some of the allergens are injected into the skin to see whether it causes an allergic reaction or not.
  • Blood Test: A blood sample is sent to the lab for further diagnosis, usually IgE levels are checked.
  • Challenge Test: This test is done to see if the body is allergic to certain foods or medications.
  • Patch Test: This is usually done to determine contact dermatitis.

Treatment of Skin Allergy | When to Consult a Doctor

The type of treatment depends on the allergens that are causing it and the type of skin allergy you have.

  • Topical ointments are recommended to reduce swelling and inflammation. This includes antihistamines that reduce the swelling quite a bit.
  • Antibiotics are given in case a bacterial infection causes the skin allergy to flare up.
  • Loose clothing is to be worn at all times, to allow the skin to breathe.
  • All allergens that the body is allergic to are to be avoided at all costs.

Skin allergies can be seasonal or can flare up regardless of the time and day. If the allergies cause you trouble and don't go away within 24 to 48 hours, you need to immediately seek medical advice.

Speciality for Skin Allergy

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