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Allergies are caused by the body's immune system producing antibodies to protect against foreign substances that may cause sickness or infection.

The severity of allergies ranges greatly, and varies from person to person. Most of the time, allergic reactions have minor symptoms. However, when a reaction is severe, it involves several of the body's organ systems, and may cause life-threatening reactions in the body. If this occurs, contact 911 immediately.


Common triggers of allergies are: certain types of foods, insect stings, medications, and airborne substances like pollen, dander, and dust mites. The symptoms of allergies differ, based upon the trigger.

  • Airborne Substances: Congestion, runny nose, itchy and watery eyes.
  • Certain Foods: Tingling mouth, swelling of lips, tongue, face or throat, and hives.
  • Insect Stings: Swelling around the sting site, itching or hives, cough, tightness in the chest, wheezing, and shortness of breath.
  • Medication: Hives, itchy skin, rash, facial swelling, and wheezing.


Allergy medications, allergy shots, and epinephrine shots all help to reduce the reaction of your immune system and ease allergy symptoms. Visit the nearest MedExpress location to discuss these options with a medical provider.

This information is not intended to replace the advice of a physician. It is information that is generally available. Each person has unique medical needs based on several factors including age, genetics, body type and build, medications,exposures to illness and medical history, to name a few. Always seek the advice of a physician or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition that you are experiencing. If you are suffering from a non-emergent medical situation, it is suggested that you visit the nearest MedExpress center or your family physician. If you believe you are experiencing a medical emergency, call 911.