When it comes to allergies, many people believe that they are developed during childhood. However, new allergies can develop with age and can strike at any point in life. Adult-onset allergies can range from allergic rhinitis to food allergies. Often adults are baffled by their new symptoms, it can be easy to mistake the symptoms of an allergic attack for another condition. Here are a few things to know about allergies that develop during adulthood:
Allergies Are Common In Adults
One thing to consider is that allergies are very common in adults. Around 30 percent of adults in the US have allergies of some sort with seasonal allergies being the most common. There is also evidence that the amount of people suffering from allergies is increasing throughout the US. Food allergies affect about 4 percent of adults in the US. Of the people with food allergies, around 15 percent develop them after the age of 18. For those who are experiencing allergy symptoms, there is a very good chance that the culprit is some sort of allergy.
Allergy Testing Is Available
When it comes to allergic reactions, it can be difficult to determine what allergen is causing the symptom. Determining which allergen is responsible allows doctors to better treat their patients. Allergy testing is available and can help doctors determine exactly what their patients are having a reaction to. There are two types of allergy testing that are commonly done, a skin test and a blood test. The average cost is around $60 to $300 for the skin test and between $200 and $1,000 for the blood test. Most insurances will cover at least some of the cost of allergy testing.
Immunotherapy Should Be Considered
As an adult, it can be very difficult to avoid allergens. For those whose allergies are not easily controlled with medication or who find that their allergies are restrictive, immunotherapy is an option. Immunotherapy, also often referred to as allergy shots, gradually decrease the patient's sensitivity to the allergens over the course of a few years. This treatment can cost anywhere from $800 to $2,500 with the cost varying depending on how long the treatment is needed. The main drawback to this treatment is that it does involve getting regular injections, sometimes as often as once a week.
Adult-onset allergies can be a hassle. Many people are unaware that allergies can develop during adulthood until they are hit with symptoms. Adult allergies are becoming more common. Allergy testing can help adults determine exactly what is causing their allergic reactions. Allergy shots are also an option for those who have developed allergies as an adult and who want a long-term solution to their symptoms.