Know The Signs Of Anaphylactic Shock
There are many people in the world who suffer from severe allergies to food, fabrics, and other substances. If these people come into contact with their allergen, they can develop a serious condition known as anaphylaxis, which is an allergic reaction caused by the body's production of histamines. If left untreated, and it needs to be treated rapidly, anaphylaxis can lead into an even more serious problem known as anaphylactic shock. If anaphylactic shock is not addressed immediately and thoroughly, it can often be fatal. It is important to know the signs of anaphylactic shock and to get to an emergency healthcare provider the second they are experienced.
A Word About Allergies
The first and perhaps most important thing to understand about anaphylaxis and anaphylactic shock is that they can happen at anytime and to anyone. That's because allergies to specific substances can develop at anytime. For example, a person could go his entire life eating and enjoying shrimp. And then, suddenly, out of the blue and without warning, he could develop an allergy to shrimp and go into shock the next time he eats it.
Fortunately, that doesn't happen often. Most people will experience some kind of sensitivity, such as pain or discomfort, when they first start developing allergies. More often than not, however, the allergies will worsen over time. This is not always the case though which is why all people should be tested for allergies regularly. And, it's also why everyone, especially those with known allergies or sensitivities, should be extremely aware of the warning signs of this serious condition.
One of the first symptoms of anaphlaxis is often itching, usually of the eyes, faces, and throat. This itching may be mild at first, but, if left uncared for, it can quickly progress into itching and swelling of the entire affected area.
After that, the person may develop hives and difficulty breathing, which are signs of going into serious shock.
Another major sign of anaphylaxis is changes in coloration. If, after exposure to a potential or known allergen, a person suddenly gets very flushed or very pale, it's time to seek help. These types of sudden changes are not at all normal and indicate that the body is working hard to find against a known allergen.
Trouble Breathing and Swallowing
One of the most frightening signs of anaphylaxis is sudden difficulty breathing. When a person can't catch his breath, he will often lose his ability to swallow as well, due to swelling and closing of the throat.
If any of these signs are present, whether there is a known allergy or not, it's imperative to get to an emergency health care provider like Diane L. Ozog, MD, SC immediately. Doing so could mean the difference between life and death.