If you think that you are allergic to certain types of foods or substances because of a reaction that you’ve had after coming into contact with those items, you might want to talk to your doctor about an allergy skin test. The process usually doesn’t take long to complete, and answers as to what you’re allergic to are often available within a few days. Sometimes, you can get results the same day as the skin test if they are available.
Although an allergy skin test might seem like it would be invasive, it’s really nothing more than a simple scratch test using various allergens on your skin. Once the allergens are put on your skin, your doctor will examine the area to see if there is any kind of reaction. Before the test, you’ll talk to your doctor about what happens when you eat certain foods or touch certain materials. Sometimes, substances you breathe can cause a reaction instead of only those you come in direct contact with.
An allergy skin test is typically done to determine the severity of allergic reactions and to determine exactly what you’re allergic to if you suspect that there could be multiple causes. Some of the conditions that can be detected include asthma, allergies to certain types of foods or medications, and allergies to latex or common materials that you have around your home. A skin test is typically a safe procedure that is often done on all ages, including infants, to determine if there is anything that should be avoided whether it’s at home or outside of the home. Keep in mind that if you’ve had a severe reaction to an allergen or if you have certain skin conditions, your doctor might not want to perform a skin test and could utilize other types of tests to determine what causes your reactions.
Most skin tests are performed in the office. It usually takes less than an hour from start to finish. At times, the allergens that are used will show immediate results while others might not show a reaction for a few hours. Several different common allergens are used during the skin test. Various types of foods, pet dander, pollen, and mold are usually tested first. Small marks are made on your skin before a small drop of each allergen is placed next to the marks. A small lancet is used to prick the skin so that the allergen enters the bloodstream. Your doctor will examine each area to determine if there is a reaction and to what substance a reaction occurred.
To learn more about what an allergy skin test entails, we encourage you to reach out and make an appointment with Asthma Allergy Centre. At our convenient locations in Tigard, Beaverton, McMinnville, and Newberg, our caring and dedicated team of professionals will be pleased to explain this options to you in full and answer any questions you may have. Contact us today to set up your consultation – we look forward to speaking with you!