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When an individual struggles with an addiction to an illegal substance, they are usually viewed as bad people, people who do not deserve to breathe our air or continue living. I was asked once why people with opioid use disorder don’t just die. Individuals who struggle with an addiction to an illegal substance can be viewed as someone who is simply trading one addiction for another when they seek out treatment. I can honestly say I have never met any individual with an addiction who told me they woke up one day and decided to throw everything away so they could get high. I have never met an individual with an addiction who said they woke up one day and decided they wanted to be homeless, or that they wanted to ruin all of their relationships with friends and family. Stigma prevents individuals with addiction from seeking out life-saving treatment. Individuals with opioid use disorder, for example, medication-assisted treatment (MAT) can be life-saving, but the stigma surrounding MAT hinders access to treatment and the expansion of such services. I offer you this as food for thought: if you needed treatment for heart failure, but heart failure and the treatment were looked down upon, would you seek out the treatment? Maybe you would or maybe you wouldn’t, but the biggest piece is that you will never have to make that decision as heart failure is not an ailment that is shamed or stigmatized. Unless you are someone’s close family member or friend, I would ask you to pause and consider that you do not know every circumstance that has led an individual down a certain path. Let’s all work together to educate one another and help to #endstigma#supportnotstigma📷
1). Allergies are best described as?
a) Sneezing itching watery eyes, scratchy throat.
b) Body’s immune system reaction to a foreign substance.
c) Onset of cold during spring season.
d) Reaction to influenza virus during spring season.
2). How can allergies be diagnosed?
a) Doctor exam
b) Blood tests
c) Allergy skin test
d) All of the above
3). The term allergic rhinitis is the proper term for what is commonly referred to as Hay Fever?
4). Stinging insects can cause allergic reactions so severe they kill how many Americans each year?
5). Allergies can cause conjunctivitis?
6). Which of these symptoms indicates a cold rather than an allergy?
a) Mucous & yellowish nasal discharge
b) Uncontrolled sneezing
c) Lack of fever
d) Anaphylactic shock
7). What is pet dander?
a) Animal hair
b) Microscopic particles of skin
c) Invisible mites that live on animals
d) Dust on animal skin
8). Pollen is best described as
a) Yellowish, waxy substance carried by flying insects
b) Grainy, potent histamine-producing allergy trigger
c) Dry protein from trees, grass, flowers, and weeds
d) All of the above
9). Cigarettes are considered an allergic trigger?
10). On average, how many Americans suffer from allergies?
Q1. Answer is B. An allergy refers to an exaggerated reaction by our immune system in response to bodily contact with certain foreign substances (allergens). Allergic people's bodies recognize the foreign substance and one part of the immune system turns on.
Q2. Answer is D. Diagnosing allergies starts with a doctor’s exam, however, allergy skin tests and blood tests are commonly used to identify the substances that are causing your allergy reactions.
Q3. Answer is A. The term "hay fever" is a misnomer. Hay is not a usual cause of this problem, and it does not cause fever. Early descriptions of sneezing, nasal congestion, and eye irritation while harvesting field hay promoted this popular term. Allergic rhinitis is the correct term used to describe this allergic reaction, and many different substances cause the allergic symptoms noted in hay fever.
Q4. Answer is B. When warmer weather arrives, it is time to think about the return of stinging insects. Over 2 million Americans are allergic to stinging insects. While the severity of these allergic reactions varies greatly, they cause up to 150 deaths each year in the U.S. alone.
Q5. Answer is A. Inflammation of the conjunctiva of the eyes that is caused by allergy is referred to as allergic conjunctivitis. Eye allergies mainly involve conjunctiva, the tissue lining (mucus membrane) covering the white surface of the eyeball and the inner folds of the eyelids.
Q6. Answer is A. Cold symptoms such as sneezing, runny nose and congestion often appear one at a time. In allergy sufferers, these symptoms present at the same time and continue with exposure to the allergen. Colds can produce fever and yellowish thick discharge. Additionally, colds generally appear during the winter months, while allergies are more common in spring and fall.
Q7. Answer is B. Dander is comprised of tiny scales of skin shed from human or animal skin and hair. Dander floats in the air, settles on surfaces and makes up much of the dust found in any home. Cat dander is a classic cause of allergic reactions.
Q8. Answer is D. Pollen is comprised of small, light, dry protein particles from trees, grasses, flowers, and weeds. Pollen is commonly spread by the wind. Most people have little contact with the large, heavy, waxy pollen grains of many flowering plants because this type of pollen is not carried by wind but by insects such as butterflies and bees. However, the light form of pollen can lodge in the mucus membranes that line the nose and in other parts of the respiratory tract, causing irritation and histamine allergic reactions.
Q9. Answer is A. Cigarettes, cigars, and other forms of smoking tobacco can cause an allergic reaction. Researchers report that exposure to cigarette smoke, which contains a variety of toxic irritants and chemicals, can induce or aggravate allergy symptoms.
Q10. Answer is B. At least one out of every 5 (20%) Americans suffers from some form allergies.
How did you do?
8-10 correct. Great job! You really know your allergy facts!
7-4 correct. Not bad! Finish reading this newsletter to freshen up your knowledge!
3-0 correct. Wow! You really need to see a provider and learn more about how allergies can affect you!
Allergies can cause a multitude of symptoms including stuffy nose, itching, puffy and swollen eyelids, sneezing and coughing. But did you know that allergies can cause other symptoms?
Allergies can also cause:
· decreased concentration and focus
· limited activities
· decreased decision-making capacity
· impaired hand-eye coordination
· problems remembering things
· sleep disorders
· missed days of work or school
· more motor vehicle accidents
· more school or work injuries
The other symptoms of allergies can affect both adults and children. The symptoms in children can be vague and it may not be clear that allergies are the underlying cause. Children with allergies can be more moody and irritable during allergy season. Since children are not always able to express their discomfort verbally, they may act up at school and at home. These irritability or other symptoms caused by ear, nose or throat trouble can be mistaken for attention deficit disorder (ADD). With proper treatment, symptoms can be kept under control and disruptions at home and school can be avoided. (American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology, 2014. Types of Allergies, Allergic Rhinitis. Retrieved from http://acaai.org/allergies/types/hay-fever-rhinitis)
A child who sneezes or coughs a lot, who develops frequent rashes or hives, or gets a stomach ache, cramps or nausea after eating certain foods may have allergies. Immunotherapy is approved for all ages but is not recommended to children younger than 5 years of age. Early identification of your child’s allergies will improve their overall quality of life, reduce the number of missed school days and reduce the number of days you will have to miss work to care for them. Children have a high risk of developing asthma when they have ongoing allergies. Allergens from the air, like pollen or mold, can trigger an immune system response that causes sensitivity in the lungs and airways which produces excessive mucous production and swollen airways. Allergic rhinitis, skin reactions, food allergies or previous allergic reactions are known risk factors for asthma. If your child has allergy symptoms they should be evaluated by a medical provider to determine the best course of treatment to help prevent the development of asthma.
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