Allergies and asthma are growing more common, and they often occur alongside each other. Prosperity Internal Medicine doctors Tarique Zahir, MD, and Taseen Mir, MD, use a patient-focused approach to treat allergies and asthma. The practice believes in building relationships with their patients and getting to know each person’s medical needs well so you can get the allergy and asthma treatment that helps you escape symptoms like sneezing, a runny nose, and wheezing for the long term. Call the Reston, Virginia, office or book an appointment online today. Telehealth consultations are available.
Allergies occur when your body reacts to an allergen — a foreign substance that gets into your body through inhalation, eating, touch, or injection. There are many types of allergies, including:
Allergies affect at least 100 million Americans today, and they’re growing more common. In particular, pollen allergies are increasing, which is likely due to climate change. Pollen seasons now last longer and start earlier, and the pollen count is expected to rise sharply in the coming years.
Asthma is a noncontagious lung disease. It occurs when the tiny airways (bronchi) inside the lungs grow irritated and swell, which makes it hard to breathe. Asthma causes asthma attacks with wheezing, coughing, shortness of breath, and sensations of chest tightness.
About 25 million American adults have asthma, and about 60% of sufferers have allergic asthma, which stems from allergies.
This occurs because many substances that cause environmental allergies, for example, pollen, mold, and pet dander, can also trigger asthma attacks. Less commonly, food and skin allergies, such as shellfish and latex, can trigger asthma attacks.
Tests and treatments for allergies and asthma may include:
Asthma testing usually involves spirometry (a breathing test), and you may also need an exhaled nitric oxide (FeNO) test or a bronchoprovocation test (controlled allergen exposure to find your asthma triggers). Treatment of asthma usually includes avoiding your triggers and taking medication (usually through inhalers).
Some treatments address both allergies and asthma. For example, allergy shots reduce your allergic reactions and also prevent many allergic asthma attacks.
There are also other dual-purpose treatments, such as leukotriene modifiers and oral medication that you take daily. Leukotriene modifiers can reduce your allergic response, improve lung function, and help reduce bronchial hyper-sensitivity.
For allergies, the most common approach is allergy testing followed by avoiding triggers, taking oral medication, or having allergy shots.
Allergies and asthma can affect your quality of life, but you don’t have to let them disrupt your life anymore. Prosperity Internal Medicine specializes in asthma and allergy care that improves your health care. Call the office or schedule an in-person or telehealth appointment online today.