Why is there a rise in allergies and can you prevent them?

Rise in allergies

Why is there a rise in allergies and can you prevent them?

Over the year, there have been several cases of severe allergy attacks, especially in young people. With so many stories in the news, you might think that allergies are on the rise. And maybe you’d be right. In the 20 years leading up to 2012, there was a 615% increase in hospital admissions for anaphylaxis in the UK.

With almost half of all British adults having at least one allergy, you can be forgiven for worrying about your or your child’s livelihood. But what’s causing this increase in allergies?

Hygiene

Several explanations might highlight why allergies are becoming more prominent. A top reason is excessive cleaning. Although cleanliness is critical, it could also explain why allergies are developing further.

A lack of exposure to dust and dirt can cause allergies, especially if suddenly exposed to large amounts of bacteria. Sometimes there is a thing as “too clean”. Exposure to allergens helps develop our immune system. It isn’t recommended that you stop washing your hands, dusting regularly, or cleaning surfaces, however, it might be effective to take shorter showers, spend more time outside, or even own a pet.

Preparation

Another reason for the increase in allergies could lie in the way we prepare certain foods. For example, research suggests that the way different countries cook peanuts can reflect the levels of peanut allergies. In China, peanuts are typically boiled or fried but elsewhere, in places like the US, they roast them. This might indicate that roasted peanuts are responsible for higher levels of allergies.

Prevention

Despite the increase in allergies, there are developments in the treatment and prevention of allergic conditions. In particular, peanut allergies have the potential to be avoided by slowly building up a tolerance. Out of a group of 500 4 to 17-year-olds from across the UK and US, studies show that almost all of the group were unable to tolerate even a tenth of a peanut dose. However, by taking daily doses of peanut over a year, two-thirds of the group were then able to tolerate at least two whole peanuts.

But the safest way of knowing is getting tested. Being allergy tested is critical so that you know whether or not there is any risk to your health. Peanut and other food allergies can be dangerous and consuming ingredients you are allergic to can result in anaphylaxis. Allergies can develop later in life so regular tests can be beneficial.

If you think you might be suffering from allergies, why not order one of our home testing kits today? Find out if you have cause for concern. Request an allergy test from us or visit our website.

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