Dealing with allergies

I briefly touched on allergies at the beginning of my write up about Collectormania Birmingham and Swindon Film and Comic Con but wanted to talk about it in more detail.

I have four different allergies; two food allergies and two skin allergies (contact allergen dermatitis).

My food allergies are to dairy (primarily the milk you find in dairy foods) and tomatoes, and my skin allergies are to nickel or nickel plated metals (gold under 18 carat or silver plated) and unknown plant life. My GP advised that it will be difficult to determine the exact type or types of plant life but I now know what warning signs to look out for and have some medicines to ease the symptoms.

How do these allergies effect me?

The dairy allergy is probably the most severe, although I’ve never experienced anaphylactic shock, even a small about of any milk based product will cause my abdomen to swell. The best way to describe it would be that I look pregnant. Other symptoms can vary depending on the amount of milk in the food but range from vomiting to stomach cramps. 

Second would be my allergy to nickel and nickel plated products which can cause redness and blistering depending on the length of time the allergen has been in contact with my skin. The worst case was a cheap necklace where the allergern had gotten into my blood stream through my sweat glands and blisters appeared on my neck, hands and feet. Very painful.

I’ve learnt from the experience and am very careful what jewellery or accessories I wear.

The tomato allergy is less severe. It’s mostly uncooked ones, e.g. cherry tomatoes that cause issues, they make my nose run and my eyes itch. I’ve had some minor nose runs from tomatoe ketchup or cooked tomatoes but it’s rare.

The ‘plant life’ allergy is new and, as I said in my last post, it was a skin reaction to my hands, feet and the back of my neck with redness, blistering and a lot of itching!! I’m going to be more careful in future, where gloves gardening etc.

It seems like once you’re allergic to one thing it’s common to develop allergies to other things.

Treatments and diagnoses
In all cases my GP and I have determined what things caused my allergic reactions by process of elimination, for example cutting out food groups from my diet to see if the symptons subsided and removing jewellery and metal belt buckles. We’re still determining the type of plant life and my GP advised a patch test would be the best option; I’m waiting for a referal.

To combat my allergies I have antihistamine pills (both on prescription and over the counter), steroid creams (on prescription) and a soap free body wash (over the counter). Unfortunately there’s not a one thing for all treatment. 

What allergies have you come across or do you have?

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3 thoughts on “Dealing with allergies

  1. I get bad allergies but never too bad. I am usually just sniffling and carrying a whole tissue box with me. It’s annoying at how my nose runs and runs while being stuffy too. And the sneezing is a pain especially when you cough or fart or do it all at the same time. God, the body is weird.
    Michelle recently posted…Settling Into Dreams’ OpennessMy Profile

  2. I found this really interesting to read. I’d never heard of someone being allergic to tomatoes before. It’s not something that’s ever mentioned on food packaging, so would never have guessed. At least it’s not too bad! As for the dairy one, I know a lot of people who have problems with that. Glad to hear you’re seeing a doctor about it!

    I’m permanently on antihistamines for hay fever and dust allergies. I’m also very allergic to cats, though antihistamines don’t actually help that. It’s really annoying, especially if I want to spend a long period at a cat owner’s house.
    Amy recently posted…How to Survive a British HeatwaveMy Profile

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