Allergies Specialist

Loudoun Walk In Medical Center

Fuad Alykhan, MD

Internist & Urgent Care located in Ashburn, VA

More than 50 million Americans suffer from allergies each year, and if you’re one of them, you know how disruptive they can be. Dr. Fuad Alykhan and the team at Loudoun Walk In Medical Center in Ashburn, Virginia treat both seasonal and chronic allergy symptoms so you can get relief and get back to the activities you enjoy. Call the office or walk in six days a week.

Allergies Q & A

What causes allergies?

Any substance that your immune system has an adverse reaction to can be the cause of allergy symptoms. Some of the most common allergy triggers include:

  • Pet dander
  • Bee stings
  • Pollen
  • Dust mites
  • Mold
  • Foods
  • Medications

If your body thinks something is harmful, it produces extra antibodies to protect you from it. These antibodies often cause unpleasant symptoms like skin rashes or respiratory problems.

How do I know if I have allergies?

In most cases, you’ll experience various symptoms that alert you to the fact that your body is having an adverse reaction to something. Common allergy symptoms include:

  • Runny, stuffy nose
  • Sneezing
  • Watery eyes
  • Skin rash or itchy skin
  • Coughing and shortness of breath
  • Digestive problems

Most allergic reactions aren’t life-threatening, but they do cause annoying symptoms that prevent you from participating in outdoor activities or being around pets.

However, in some cases, an allergic reaction can be severe, especially when an allergen causes your throat to swell or airways to constrict. If that happens to you or a family member, seek immediate emergency medical attention.

How are allergies diagnosed and treated?

You may have a skin test or a blood test to diagnose your allergies.

During a skin allergy test, you undergo a series of skin pricks that indicate allergic reaction by exposing you to a small number of proteins found in several possible allergens, like pollen or mold. If your skin reacts with inflammation or redness, you’re allergic to that particular substance.

An allergy blood test is a standard blood drawing procedure wherein your blood is checked for certain antibodies after being exposed to possible allergenic substances. This may be a better option for you if you have extensive skin rashes that prevent accuracy in a skin test.

Once Dr. Alykhan or one of the team determines what’s causing your allergies, they can prescribe an effective treatment option.

How are allergies treated?

If you know what’s causing your allergies, you can try to avoid your triggers, but that’s not always possible. You may need a more effective way to manage your symptoms.

There are two main types of allergy treatments at Loudoun Walk In Medical Center: medication and immunotherapy.

When it’s impossible to avoid your allergy triggers, medications like decongestants and antihistamines may help control your symptoms. Corticosteroids also help treat inflammation in your sinuses.

Immunotherapy works well to control more severe allergies. It’s an effective preventive treatment for such allergens as pollen, dust mites, and bee stings. Immunotherapy treatments usually involve a series of injections that include purified allergen extracts.

You get a series of shots of the substances you’re allergic to over the course of a few years so your body can build up its immunity against them. You may also be able to take tablets or allergy drops that you place under your tongue as a form of immunotherapy.

When you need relief from allergies, the team at Loudoun Walk In Medical Center is there to help. Call to schedule an appointment or come in.