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Read Kathi's previous post on Anaphylaxis Medications are given to us to help ease symptoms or battle a health condition. They are meant to be helpful, not harmful. However, any time you place a foreign substance into your body, you run the risk of triggering negative consequences, along with the positive ones. In most cases, these negative effects take the form of mild, bothersome, but ultimately short-term, side effects. For instance, a common side effect of taking antibiotics is stomach upset and/or diarrhea. A common side effect of taking pain medicine is constipation. But some side effects can be more harmful and longer lasting. For instance, a common side effect of taking a type of arthritis medicine called a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (or NSAID for short) is severe stomach irritation, including ulcers of the digestive tract. In these cases, doctors and patients must weigh the benefits of the medicine versus the risks, or side effects. In...
Did you know the largest internal organ of the body is the liver? But the overall largest organ of the body is the skin. It’s no wonder the skin is involved with so many aspects of diseases: rash, itching, fever, external bleeding, swelling, pallor (turning pale), and cyanosis (turning blue). Doctors look for signs of hundreds of diseases by examining the organ that is most accessible, the skin.
Often the skin is our first line of defense against adverse conditions such as hot and cold temperatures, external trauma (for example falling on hard ground) and harmful rays of the sun. We are protected from a myriad of germs (bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites) by having a finely woven coat of armor, our skin.
Unfortunately certain substances, after contacting the skin, may cause a break down in protective barrier forces. This may be followed by inflammation and a skin eruption (rash) that signals the development of contact dermatitis (CD) .
In this post, I will talk about the various types of pollen allergy and how to manage them. Pollen allergy is probably the most common type of nasal allergy, resulting in symptoms such as runny and stuffy nose, sneezing, wheezing (if you have asthma too) and even eye allergy symptoms like itchiness, weeping and burning.
But What IS Pollen?
First of all, let me define the term "pollen". Pollens are tiny, egg-shaped cells in flowering plants that are necessary to fertilize the plant. The average pollen particle is too small to be seen with the naked eye-it's less than the width of an average strand of human hair.
And here is something else. Pollen is not really a harmful substance in many people. It's just that when you have allergies, your body's immune system interprets the tiny pollen particles your breathe in as dangerous invaders and mounts a defense system that results in your allergy symptoms.
Pollen counts vary greatly through the year and ther...
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