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Allergies happen when your immune system overreacts to normally harmless substances such as pollen, bee venom, pet dander or food. When you come into contact with the allergen, your immune system's reaction can inflame your skin, sinuses, airways or digestive system. The severity of allergies varies from person to person and can range from minor irritation to anaphylaxis — a potentially life-threatening emergency. While most allergies can't be cured, treatments can help relieve your allergy symptoms.
Dr. Tony Bonitatibus and his team treat the following conditions related to allergies:
- Allergic Rhinitis (Hay Fever)
- Chronic Sinusitis
- Digestive Issues
- Esophagitis (inflammation of the esophagus)
- Chronic Skin Conditions like Eczema and Hives
- Chronic Cough
- Primary Immune deficiency
Preventing allergic reactions depends on the type of allergy you have but some common prevention strategies include:
- Avoid known triggers. Even if you're treating your allergy symptoms, try to avoid known allergens. Some are easier to avoid than others. When you can’t avoid an allergen, try to reduce your contact with it.
- Take your medicine as prescribed. They can be helpful for managing your symptoms. Take them while also avoiding allergens.
- Track your allergy symptoms. Track what you do, what you eat, when symptoms occur and what seems to help. This may help you and your doctor find what causes or worsens your symptoms.
- Wear a medic alert bracelet. If you have ever had a severe allergic reaction, please wear a medical alert bracelet. This bracelet lets others know that you have a serious allergy. It can be critical if you have a reaction and you are unable to communicate.
The most effective way to decrease your allergy symptoms and prevent new allergies is with immunotherapy—commonly known as allergy shots. During a “build-up phase,” you’ll receive weekly shots over several months to help your body learn to tolerate an allergen. When you move onto the “maintenance phase,” you’ll get shots less often. It is important to work with your doctor to determine the right treatment schedule for you.
If you’re allergic to ragweed or grass pollen, you may have the option of taking pills instead of getting shots. This is called sublingual immunotherapy. You also may have the option of sublingual allergy drops under the tongue which can treat all antigens.
Allergy Care Plan
Following each appointment, you will be given a personalized 5-point treatment plan by Dr. Bonitatibus. The treatment plan will include:
- Recommendations on how to avoid allergens in the environment.
- List of prescribed medications and how and when to take them.
- Summary of test results.
- Information on allergy shots and how they apply to them.
- Recommendation on when to schedule a follow up appointment.
Skin testing is the most common way to identify allergies. Your skin testing appointment may include:
- Skin prick test – Applies allergens to the surface of your skin with a small prick or puncture
- Intradermal test – Injects allergens below your skin’s surface
You’ll be closely monitored by Dr. Bonitatibus and your health care team for signs of an allergic reaction after each test.
The tests aren’t painful, and you’ll appreciate our ability to test for many allergens at once. Most allergy testing appointments last 60 to 90 minutes.
If you take antihistamines, you’ll need to stop taking them several days before your skin test. Follow your doctor’s instructions to ensure you get the most accurate test results.
If your child needs a skin test, trust us to help him or her feel comfortable. We’ll explain this gentle procedure so they understand what to expect. If your little one is afraid of needles, ask about the option for an allergy blood test.
TVC Main Building
3rd Floor, Suite 310
1001 Noble Street
8 a.m. - 5 p.m.
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