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Oak Street & Oregon Allergy Blog

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Hygiene-325The hygiene hypothesis is a theory used to explain why there has been an increase in allergies around the world.

What exactly is hygiene?

The World Health Organization (WHO) describes hygiene as conditions and practices that help to maintain health and prevent the spread of diseases, which means the things that you do to keep yourself and your surroundings clean to maintain good health. This might include bathing, dental care, handwashing, using clean water sources, keeping human and animal waste away from food and water, all with the goal of preventing infectious disease. This is a good thing, overall, we want clean and sanitary living conditions, but, in theory, it may be contributing to immune system confusion.

Tagged in: Allergies Pets

160913PetsGoodHealth-325For years, I've heard about how pets can help lower stress, which can improve your body and your mind. And I've always wondered, is this really true?

In my personal experience, I have found that having pets at home does decrease my stress, gets me out of the house to walk, gives me joy when I see them play—and I just adore coming home to someone so excited to see me. Seeing the wagging tail and hearing the happy sounds my dog makes when I return is really comforting, and it always brings a smile to my weary face.

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Tagged in: Allergies Pets

131216OSMtravelallergiesWe frequently get calls from patients who’ve either lost or forgotten medications when they are traveling. If you suffer from allergies and asthma, consider these six tips before you head out on vacation:

1. See your physician: Before you go on that well-deserved trip, see your physician and let him or her know your travel destination. Discuss concerns you might have, especially if you know you are going to be exposed to something you are allergic to, such as a friend’s cat or dog. Your doctor may be able to provide helpful advice.

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Asthma symptoms can be dramatically reduced by making your bedroom a dog-and-cat-free zone.

Just because you have asthma doesn't mean you have to give up Fifi or Fido - but it wouldn't hurt. Simply shutting your bedroom door and creating a furry-friend-free zone can do wonders for those with asthma, lessening symptoms five fold.

Furry friends are just one of the many asthma triggers that can be curtailed in the home, according to a recent study summarized by the Oregon Public Health Division and Oregon Health Authority. By removing triggers - dust mites, pests, rodents, mold, second-hand smoke and furry pets - asthma sufferers are more likely to breathe easier.

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If you’ve ever wondered if you are allergic to dogs, or whether there is such a thing as a “hypoallergenic dog,” read on…

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Tagged in: Pets

Posted by on in Allergy
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You might be wondering, "Why do I sneeze and wheeze when I’m around cats?"  Well, the effects on your health begin with development of an allergic antibody, called IgE, to various cat allergens. With continued exposure, you can develop symptoms of allergies, including sneezing, stuffy nose, and itchy eyes or asthma (wheezing or coughing).

Where do cat allergens come from?
A major cat allergen is found in cat saliva, dander from sebaceous glands in the skin and fur. Other cat allergens are found in the urine and blood.

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Tagged in: Pets