If you have always had trouble being around cats with symptoms such as watery and itchy eyes, congestion, and even skin rashes, you are not alone. Cat allergies are very common and can range from mild to severe in nature. However, while many people have cat allergies, most do not know how to properly handle and deal with those issues and symptoms. Get to know some of the important steps that you can take when you have an allergy to cats. Then, you can be sure that you are doing everything you can to properly manage your allergies from this point forward.
Take Daily Allergy Medications
You never know when you will come into direct contact with cats or with cat dander and fur in your daily life. As such, one of the best precautions that you can take is to begin a daily allergy medication regimen.
Allergy medications like Claritin, Zyrtec, and others are most effective when taken on a regular, daily basis rather than sporadically when acute allergy symptoms occur. The effects of these medications build up in the body, helping to manage allergy symptoms as they occur and prevent them from getting severe.
Because of this, you should make it a habit to take an allergy pill every day. You can make it a part of your morning routine for example, and keep the pills right next to your toothbrush so you don't forget.
Consider Allergy Shots
If your cat allergies are severe, and you have a reaction even when coming into contact with people that have been around cats recently, you may want to consider working with an allergist to get allergy shots. Allergy shots are a method of reducing the immune system's response to allergens it comes into contact with.
Essentially, an allergy is an exaggerated immune system response to a substance (like cat dander). A healthy (allergy-free) immune system will have little to no reaction to contact with these substances and will basically ignore them. When a person has an allergy, it means that their immune system reacts to that substance in the same way it would react to a virus or bacteria invading the body. The immune system attacks the "invader" aggressively. This causes allergy symptoms.
Allergy shots work by exposing the immune system to concentrated doses of the allergen on a regular basis. Eventually, the immune system will get more accustomed to having those allergens around and react less strongly over time. This would allow you to be around cats with only minimal (or no) symptoms so you are not absolutely miserable.
Knowing these steps to take when you are allergic to cats, you can start dealing with your allergy right away. Get in touch with a company like North Texas Allergy to learn more.