“Allergy sufferers often recognize clear patterns of when their symptoms start to act up,” explained Dr. Carolyn Word of Charleston Allergy + Asthma.
For many, springtime pollens make the outdoors unbearable. For others, fall allergens such as weeds and mold keep them from enjoying the changing leaves and cooler temperatures. Thankfully, Dr. Word, along with Charleston Allergy + Asthma’s team of board-certified immunologists and allergists, helps patients live their lives to the fullest, no matter what allergies ail them.
Having provided allergy and asthma care in the Charleston area for more than 30 years, Charleston Allergy + Asthma’s comprehensive approach leads patients to allergy symptom relief and improved quality of life.
“Our patient-centered care and customized treatment options allow patients to feel better, play sports and spend time outdoors,” explained Dr. Word.
After treatment, patients can participate in activities that often are unpleasant and potentially dangerous for allergy and asthma sufferers.
Board-certified in allergy, asthma and immunology in both pediatric and adult patients, Dr. Word encourages families to schedule annual and back-to-school appointments over the summer. These visits allow for patients and families to set up allergy and asthma plans for the school year and undergo additional allergy testing if needed. For those with food allergies, these annual visits are especially important because some children outgrow food allergies by developing a tolerance to food that previously caused a reaction. In addition, allergy testing may be indicated for environmental allergens such as trees, weeds and grasses, as well as dust mites, mold and animal dander. Because environmental allergies can trigger asthma, understanding a patient’s allergens and formulating a treatment plan can help prevent exacerbating asthma symptoms.
Charleston Allergy + Asthma offers in-office allergy testing performed through a skin prick test, and, if needed, an intradermal skin test. Patients of all ages generally tolerate the tests well, and it can recognize specific allergies in as little as 15 to 20 minutes. During allergy skin testing, the patient’s skin is exposed to an extract made from purified forms of allergens. The skin is then observed for signs of an allergic reaction, which appear similar to a mosquito bite if an allergy is present. Allergy tests can confirm whether a particular substance that is touched, inhaled or eaten will trigger allergy symptoms.
Once a patient’s allergies are identified, Charleston Allergy + Asthma offers patients a variety of treatment options to meet their lifestyles and needs. They may prescribe and refill pharmaceuticals such as asthma inhalers, antihistamines and nasal sprays. They also provide education on the best way to administer medications and manage exposure to patients’ allergens. Most importantly, Charleston Allergy + Asthma offers allergy immunotherapy, including from shots to tablets, to safely desensitize patients to their allergens.
With locations in Mount Pleasant, Summerville and West Ashley, as well as telehealth appointments, Charleston Allergy + Asthma aims to make allergy testing and treatment accessible.
To learn more about Charleston Allergy + Asthma, visit charlestonallergy.com. While on the website, check out the daily pollen count. Charleston Allergy + Asthma is the only allergy practice in the Charleston area that has its own air sampler that provides residents with an accurate daily count of pollen and mold spores.
By Isabel Alvarez Arata