A good mystery throws you right into a story with a lot of characters and clues waiting to be unraveled and explored. Allergies are like that; they're complicated. There's a ton of constantly shifting variables to keep in mind when diagnosing allergies or hypersensitivities. Plus, there are characters like fatigue, weight gain, and muscle pain that could be related to an allergy or possibly other conditions.
Once you start investigating it, allergies are more like a maze of confusion than a mystery to solve, so how do we extract what we need from all the information that's been thrown at us? Well, I suppose the first thing we do is gather our facts. Click below to brush up on your allergy knowledge before proceeding.
1. What Are Allergies?
Understanding an allergic reaction
Learn about common immunoglobins related to allergy
The 4 Types of Hypersensitivity
2. Types of Common Allergies
3. How Allergies Are Contracted
4. Symptoms and Triggers
Severity, Frequency, Duration
Having a fundamental grasp of how allergies work is vital to finding clues inside of facts.
While trying to discover what's causing your allergy, lay out all the information in a way that makes sense. Write down your symptoms, how often you get them, their severity, and other details that are pertinent. Compile everything you do know, then fill in the empty spaces as you unwind the mystery.
You can use a grid like this, or whatever works best for you. Once everything is down in one spot, begin looking for similarities or themes. If you can't solve this one on your own or need further testing, share this grid with your allergist who'll be ecstatic to see you've already done the homework. They'll know the proper next steps to take, and you'll have saved yourself money and time by doing the legwork in advance.
No one expects you to be an expert. That's why doctors specialize in this stuff; it's not easy. But if you don't have access to a doctor or can't afford access to one, this grid can help you find facts, create clues, and hopefully solve the allergy mystery.
Linda Lavender writes articles to help folks with Auto Immune Disease, Depression, Anxiety and other health related illnesses.