An allergist, also known as an immunologist, is a specialist who treats health issues that result from problems with the immune system. They diagnose, treat, and help prevent immune system conditions and disorders. Problems with your immune system can happen when some of your body’s defenses don’t work as they’re supposed to, which can lead to an increased risk of autoimmune diseases, inflammation, and infection.
What conditions do allergists treat?
Allergists treat various conditions that affect several areas of your body, including the respiratory system, eyes, stomach, and skin. When your immune system has an aggressive response to allergens you ingest, inhale, or touch, it can lead to symptoms such as coughing, sneezing, and itchy or watery eyes. More severe reactions can lead to inflammation, hives, asthma, and even death. Some of these conditions include:
What procedures do allergists perform?
Some of the most common procedures allergists perform are diagnostic tests. An allergist can identify the substance responsible for triggering an exaggerated response in your immune system by introducing small amounts of potential allergens to you. Your allergist may even conduct a blood test, which detects and measures the presence of allergens in your blood.
When should I go to an allergist?
Your immune system safeguards your body against harmful viruses, bacteria, and other irritants and attackers. Problems with your immune system can be serious and life threatening.
Your immune system might not be functioning as it should if you’re often sick, suffering from asthma, or experiencing bad allergic reactions. Watch your symptoms closely, and if they persist or grow more severe, you should consider a visit to an allergist.
What can I expect from my first allergist appointment?
For your first allergist visit, your doctor will often start by gathering information about your medical and family history. They’ll likely ask about your symptoms and their severity. Your allergist may also ask about any medications you take to manage your condition.
If the cause of a reaction is unknown, your allergist may conduct tests to measure your body’s response to different allergens.
What questions should I ask my allergist?
It’s important you go to your allergist appointment prepared. To help you get started, we’ve created a list of good questions for you to ask:
Use these questions as a starting point during your allergist appointment. It’s also good practice to take notes and ask for additional resources and information.