Have common allergy symptoms like runny nose, sneezing and itchy eyes or throat? You likely look forward to the winter months when these symptoms typically subside.
While you may not be thinking about your allergies much during this time, it turns out that you should give them some thought—winter is an ideal time for allergy testing.
Why Should I Get a Test in Winter?
There are two primary reasons why allergy skin testing in winter is a wise choice.
- Patients have to stop taking antihistamine medications before getting a skin allergy test. If you have a test done in spring or summer, you’ll have to stop your meds when you need them most and suffer the consequences. Since you’re probably not taking these medications in winter to control symptoms, it’s a great time to get testing done.
- Identifying what specific allergens trigger your symptoms in winter can help you better prepare for spring and summer allergy season and allow you to start treatment sooner.
What Does Allergy Skin Testing Include?
The most common type of allergy test is the skin prick test. It is safe, quick and reliable.
To complete the test, a medical professional uses a special device to introduce a suspected allergen into the skin on your arm or back. The device does not contain needles—it only gently scratches your skin. If swelling or redness develops, that allergen is a trigger.
Some patients may require intradermal testing, which involves injecting the allergen beneath the skin to determine if it causes a reaction.
After you’ve completed the testing, your doctor will create a customized treatment plan to help manage your symptoms based on your results.
Don’t put off doing something about your allergies until you experience a symptom flare in spring. Take a proactive step to help “future you” feel your best—request an allergy test with our expert team today.