May 6, 2009

Allergies defined

What are allergies?

The immune system is responsible for the identification and destruction of foreign substances that enters the body. Normally the immune system acts as the body's defense against disease-causing microorganisms and substances. However for some people, the immune system mistakes perfectly harmless substances for germs and in response, it releases certain compounds to destroy the perceived "enemy". This results to allergic reaction.

Some people may show allergic reaction to one substance, but others may manifest allergic reaction to many substances which we call allergens.

Allergens may cause an allergic reaction when they come in contact with skin or the eye, when they are inhaled, eaten, or are injected. An allergic reaction can occur as part of a seasonal allergy (such as hay fever). Or an allergic reaction can be triggered by taking a drug, eating certain foods, or breathing in dust or animal dander.

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