Minimizing Triggers

Were You Sick with Allergies Yesterday?

John Bottrell Health Pro November 18, 2010
  • As reported here in the Los Angeles Times, Gallup released a poll "while you were sleeping" that showed that 85 percent of Americans were not sick yesterday with allergies.

     

    What might make this poll most interesting is "perhaps, because it has nothing to do with politics," the times reports.

    So 15 percent of you were sick yesterday, and only 17 percent were sick last September. That's a percentage about the same as the approval numbers for Congress.

    Gallup has been keeping track of who is sick with allergies since 2008, and has specifically been asking, "Were you sick with allergies yesterday?"


    The report notes these results are self reported, and not based on medical diagnosis. So the results could actually be higher or lower, or mistaken for cold or flu symptoms. 

     

    "Further," the report notes, "Americans who treat their allergies with medication and thus are not 'sick' with allergies would also not be included.

     

    To learn how to differentiate between cold, flu and allergy symptoms, click here.

    Despite my personal opinion I wrote about here, this fall allergy season (2010) compares statistically with 2008, and is slightly worse than 2009 (see graph here).

    Overall, the report shows that even during the winter months one in 10 (or 10 percent) Americans are sick with allergies.  While 10 percent is a poor showing when it comes to political popularity, it's a significant showing when it comes to health.

     

    This shows that allergies may have a significant effect on many of our lives, and is an important "diagnosis" to be funded, researched, and hopefully cured some day. 

     

    In our asthma community we are especially concerned because other studies show 75 percent of us asthmatics have allergies.

     

    Likewise, according to the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (AAAAI.org), 54.6 percent of Americans tested positive for at least one allergen, and this adds up to about 40 to 50 million Americans.  At least 50 percent of homes had at least six detectable allergens.

     

    Yet despite advancements in allergy treatment and wisdom, there still isn't very much that can be done for many allergy sufferers, including myself. The best way to treat allergies is by avoidance of triggers, yet this is easier said than done as I wrote here.

     

    Do you have allergies? How are your allergies this time of year? What time of year are your allergies worse? Discuss.