An allergy is an exaggerated response by the immune system to a particular substance, such as pollen or an insect bite. Allergies can produce a wide range of symptoms, including sneezing, itchy eyes, or a rash. The board-certified physicians at West Coast ENT Head & Neck Surgery in Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, Oxnard, and Camarillo, CA, provide allergy testing and treatment so you can experience relief from your allergies.

Allergens and Allergy Symptoms

Approximately one in six people in the U.S. is allergic to something. Most allergens are not harmful substances in general, yet produce an allergic reaction in certain individuals. Examples of some common allergens include certain foods, medicines, insect bites or stings, pet dander, dust mites, pollen, and mold spores. Latex and certain household chemicals can also produce an allergic response in some people.

Allergies are associated with many different symptoms and often affect the ears, nose, and throat. The specific symptoms experienced depends on the allergen and the individual. Common allergy symptoms include:

● A skin rash or hives
● Itchy or watery eyes
● Sneezing or runny nose
● Sinus congestion
● Shortness of breath
● Coughing or wheezing
● Facial swelling
● Scratchy throat

Allergy Tests and Treatments

If you are dealing with allergies, we can help. The experienced providers at our ENT offices in Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, Oxnard, and Camarillo, CA, perform allergy testing, which is used to identify the specific allergens affecting you. Identifying allergens aids in developing an individualized treatment plan to help you manage your allergy symptoms. A common method of allergy testing involves exposing the skin to various allergens to see whether or not a reaction occurs.

Numerous methods are available for treating different types of allergies. Some treatment options include topical creams or lotions and oral medicines, such as decongestants or antihistamines. These allergy treatment methods provide temporary relief from allergy symptoms, such as itchy skin or sinus congestion.

Immunotherapy is another method for treating allergies, but with long-term results. Immunotherapy helps the body build up tolerance to an allergen. It works by repeatedly exposing the body to small doses of a particular allergen. Continued exposure to the allergen helps the body build up tolerance until it is eventually immune and allergy symptoms no longer occur. Immunotherapy can be administered by injection or by placing drops of allergen extract under the tongue.

Allergy testing and treatment can help you better manage allergy symptoms. For allergy testing and management in Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, Oxnard, or Camarillo, CA, schedule an appointment with one of our skilled ENT doctors by calling West Coast ENT Head & Neck Surgery at (805) 379-9646 for Thousand Oaks; (805) 527-7320 for Simi Valley; (805) 983-0395 for Oxnard; and (805) 484-5929 for Camarillo.