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What Not To Do Before An Allergy Test

allergy doctorBeing at the mercy of seasonal allergies can grind anyone’s life to a sudden halt, especially if you don’t see it coming.  Some people try and cope but enduring the overwhelming wave of discomfort for chunks of the year can be exhausting.

Taking an allergy test is a step in the right direction.  This form of reconnaissance will tell doctors everything they need to know about how your body reacts to different allergens.  In order for it to go off without a hitch you’ll need to know what not to do before your allergy test.

What not to do before allergy tests

Allergy tests work on a very simple principle.  Not knowing what specific your body should avoid means you’re at the mercy of any number of random allergens.  Through process of elimination your doctor can expose you to different substances like ragweed, mold, foods and pollen.

There are typically three main types of allergy tests:  Scratch tests, patch tests and intradermal tests.

Scratch tests are pretty simple.  Your doctor will mark a large part of your skin with a grid and then cover the area with a drop of allergen extract.  They’ll then prick the area (but not deep enough to draw blood) and wait.

A patch test involves using a patch of allergen and putting it on your body for up to two days to see if there’s a reaction.

An intradermal test involves injecting just under your skin to see if the small amount of allergen will trigger anything.

It’s best to show up to your appointment with more than an hour of time available as the doctor has to be quite thorough.  More importantly, you need to bring a list of every medication you’re currently taking.

What to avoid before an allergy test 

Below is a list of things you should definitely avoid for up to 3 days before your test:

  • Antihistamines
  • Antidepressants (Tricyclic ones, check with your doctor before stopping)
  • Anti-inflammatories (Advil, Aspirin, Alka-Seltzer etc)
  • Beta-Blockers (Check with your doctor)
  • Nasal Sprays
  • Steroids (Oral, Dermal, Injectable, Nasal)
  • Tranquilizers or Muscle Relaxants
  • Vitamin C supplements

Most preoperative appointments require you to avoid scented products like pefume, cologne and lotion and it’s the same for your allergy test.

By simply booking an appointment you’re already well on your way to getting back to living life without having to look over your shoulder, worried about when your allergies will strike.

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