Allergy Specialist

Lonestar ENT, Allergy and Aesthetics

Otolaryngology & Aesthetics located in Palestine, TX

Many allergies start during childhood, but you can also have your first allergic reaction as an adult. At Lonestar ENT, Allergy and Aesthetics in Palestine, Texas, Eric Hensen, DO, specializes in allergy testing and treatment in patients of all ages. Don’t keep struggling with sneezing, congestion, or rashes. Call the office or use the online booking feature to schedule an appointment today.

Allergy Q & A

What causes allergies?

You develop an allergy when your immune system overreacts and labels a safe substance as a danger to your health. Then the immune system makes antibodies that identify that substance, and every time you come into contact with it in the future, it triggers an allergic reaction.

There are many different types of allergies, including:

  • Seasonal allergies, such as pollen, dust mites, and mold
  • Contact allergies, such as poison ivy, nickel, and latex
  • Stinging insect allergies, such as bees, wasps, and fire ants
  • Food allergies, such as peanuts, eggs, milk, and fish
  • Drug allergies, such as penicillin, aspirin, and ibuprofen

This is only a partial list of the numerous allergens found in each category.

What allergy symptoms will I have?

Your symptoms are related to the type of allergy. For example, allergies to airborne substances like pollen affect your eyes and nose, while contact allergies cause skin reactions.

The list of symptoms caused by all the different types of allergies includes:

  • Sneezing
  • Runny nose
  • Congested nose
  • Red, watery eyes
  • Itchy nose, eye, or mouth
  • Skin rash
  • Hives
  • Swelling
  • Nausea, diarrhea, and abdominal pain (food allergies)

If you’re allergic to food, insect venom, latex, or drugs, you’re at risk of developing a life-threatening allergic reaction called anaphylaxis. 

Anaphylaxis comes on rapidly after you’re exposed to the allergen. You’ll experience symptoms such as difficulty breathing, a swollen tongue or throat, dizziness, and loss of consciousness.

Anaphylaxis requires immediate attention. You should inject yourself with an epinephrine pen and call 911.

How are allergies treated?

After your allergies are diagnosed with a skin prick, patch, or blood test, Dr. Hensen helps you create a plan to avoid your allergens as much as possible. 

Avoiding allergens and using over-the-counter medications may provide all the symptom relief you need, depending on the severity of your allergies.

If your symptoms are severe, or they don’t improve with over-the-counter medications, you may be a good candidate for allergy shots.

Allergy shots contain a small dose of your allergen. Dr. Hensen gives you the injection on a regular schedule, slightly increasing the dose over time. After about 3-6 months, you continue getting shots but less frequently, and the dose stays the same. 

In addition, Dr. Hensen offers sublingual immunotherapy (SLIT), also known as “allergy drops,” as an alternative to shots. SLIT works by giving small doses of your allergen in the form of drops under the tongue.

As your immune system is exposed to the allergen, it becomes desensitized and gradually stops triggering an allergic reaction.

If you struggle with allergies, call Lonestar ENT, Allergy and Aesthetics or schedule an appointment online.