Allergies are the result of the immune system reacting to substances that it finds unfamiliar or dangerous. These reactions can vary from mild rashes to life-threatening conditions like anaphylaxis. They are one of the most common chronic conditions in children and teenagers, with the most common allergen being pollen, but an allergen can be anything from pollen, mould, dust or animal dander.
How Do Home Allergy Tests Work?
It all depends on the test you’re having, as some home allergy tests are blood tests, some are saliva tests, but there’s also hair tests. I’ve only had experience with home bloody allergy tests, and they’re very easy in that you use a lancet on your finger to make a small prick, and then you squeeze your finger to fill the tiny vial, and send it off to be tested. The company you bought your allergy test from, will receive your sample and test it within their lab.
An allergy blood test is a simple, painless test that looks for specific antibodies in the blood. These antibodies are present in people with a particular allergy or sensitivity to a certain food or substance. It’s important to know which food you’re allergic to because if you eat it, your body will release histamine.
Histamine is the body’s natural response to an allergen and is known to cause symptoms such as sneezing, itching, and watery eyes. It can also lead to serious symptoms such as difficulty breathing and symptoms that mimic a heart attack, so it’s important to know what you’re allergic to, so you can eliminate the allergen from your diet / life.
Home allergy tests are a great way to figure out what you are allergic to and how bad it is, without having to wait for your doctor’s appointment. It’s obviously better if you can get your allergy tests via your GP and doctor’s surgery, but if your doctor’s is anything like mine, it’s impossible to even get an appointment these days, so it’s handy to be able to get the ball rolling with home allergy tests.
The best time to take a home allergy test, is if you’ve already started to experience symptoms of allergies, so you can see if you do have any allergies or not, and what they are. The tests are done at home by yourself, and they genuinely take 5-10 minutes max. Some tests give you an answer there and then, but most need you to send them off to be tested within a laboratory, and once you’ve got your results, you can then book an appointment with your GP to discuss the results, and go from there.