For those with allergies to bee stings and insect venom, every trip outside can be a frightening experience. These allergy victims never know when a sting will come out of nowhere, sending them scrambling for their epi-pens and possibly even sending them to the emergency room.
The fact that bee sting allergies can impact so many aspects of someone’s life is just one reason why continuing with venom immunotherapy is so important, even in the time of COVID-19. The pandemic is truly dangerous, but there are protocols in place to keep patients safe as they continue with their therapy and learn to live without the constant fear of stinging insects and other outdoor allergens.
It is only natural to try to avoid public spaces and crowded gatherings in the age of coronavirus. Making these common sense changes and taking these precautions is a very smart thing to do, but that should not mean a disruption in your medical care or making a change to your immunotherapy.
The fact is the risk of bee stings for an allergic individual is far greater than even the risk of COVID-19 infection, and continuing therapy for these allergic reactions is actually more important than ever. With indoor spaces especially dangerous in terms of COVID-19 exposure, spending time outdoors can be a smart, and healthy, alternative, but only if you continue your venom immunotherapy treatments so you can safely spend time outside and worry less about bee stings.
Stopping your therapy too soon could have devastating consequences in the age of COVID-19, both for allergy sufferers and for the public health system as a whole. Ever since the pandemic got started, emergency rooms have been overrun, with long waits and the ever-present danger of transmission. If you stop your venom immunotherapy too soon and head outdoors before your treatments have concluded, you could be at greater risk of a serious allergic reaction – and a trip to an already overwhelmed ER.
By continuing with your venom immunotherapy treatments, you can protect yourself from the danger of bee stings and potentially dangerous reactions. Plus you will also be doing your part to protect the wider public by easing the strain on overcrowded emergency rooms and preserving valuable resources for the sickest patients.
Even before the COVID-19 pandemic started raging, preventing illness was always preferable to trying to treat it after the fact. This is certainly the case when it comes to bee stings, and by continuing with their allergy treatments, those who are hypersensitive to insect venom can continue to live their lives without worrying about what is behind every bush or lurking inside every outdoor trash can.
Venom immunotherapy has proven to be remarkably effective, with as many as 98 out of 100 patients showing improvements over their non-treated counterparts. If you have been undergoing this type of therapy to deal with your insect venom allergy, now is not the time to stop. And if you have not considered this type of treatment before, now is the perfect time to learn more about it, and the more you know the easier it will be to make an informed and intelligent decision.
With the unprecedented spread of the new coronavirus (COVID-19), the world is facing a whole new set of challenges. People with asthma and allergies are especially worried as they fear their condition puts them at higher risk of developing symptoms if exposed to the virus. They are also afraid that their current symptoms will become much worse.
There are still a lot of questions about COVID-19; however, by following the recommended guidelines, you will be able to protect yourself and your loved ones and manage your asthma or allergies more effectively even amidst the new pandemic. We created this short article to help keep you healthy and safe.
Is it COVID-19, Asthma, or a Seasonal Allergy?
The first thing to remember is that you must always monitor your symptoms carefully. Allergies often cause sneezing, itchy and watery eyes, and nasal congestion. These symptoms AREN’T typically caused by COVID-19 (a runny or stuffy nose is rare).
Coughing, wheezing, and asthma flare-ups may occur in both allergic asthma, and COVID-19 so don’t disregard these symptoms. Other symptoms include weakness, aches and pains, and, occasionally, diarrhea. Check your temperature regularly- the presence of fever is a common occurrence in the coronavirus disease as well as the flu. If you notice symptoms not typical to your allergy or asthma, contact your doctor.
COVID-19 and Asthma Exacerbation
Respiratory viruses, including influenza and rhinovirus, are known to make asthma symptoms worse. At the moment, scientists don’t know if the coronavirus is one of those viruses that can cause more severe asthma symptoms. There are also no clear indications that asthmatic individuals have a higher risk of contracting COVID-19. However, asthma is one of the pre-existing conditions that could complicate COVID-19 symptoms further, so you should do everything you can to keep your symptoms in check and your immune system strong.
Recommendations For Asthma and Allergy Patients
Don’t neglect to follow CDC guidelines; make sure you have enough supplies at home to last you 14-30 days. Practice frequent hand-washing, social-distancing, and crowd avoidance. Don’t travel unless it’s absolutely necessary and, if you do, take all the recommended travel precautions. You should also clean your home using a disinfectant, paying close attention to objects and surfaces that you or others often touch.
There is no evidence that allergy and asthma medications increase the risk of being infected by COVID-19, so you must keep taking your medicine and follow your Asthma Action Plan if you have one. This time of year, increased levels of pollen can make symptoms much worse, so if you feel that you can’t control your asthma or allergy, contact your allergist immediately. Together you will be able to adjust your treatment and update your action plan.
COVID-19 is a new enemy, and we still don’t know everything about it. Nevertheless, when it comes to health and disease prevention, you cannot err on the side of caution. So, if you have unaddressed asthma or severe allergy, don’t delay contacting an allergist, getting tested, and start on a treatment plan to manage your symptoms, protect yourself, and improve your health and life.
“Coronavirus (COVID-19): What People With Asthma Need to Know”. Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America. community.aafa.org/blog/coronavirus-2019-ncov-flu-what-people-with-asthma-need-to-know.
“COVID-19 and Asthma: What You Need to Know Moving Forward”. American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology. acaai.org/news/covid-19-and-asthma-what-you-need-know-moving-forward.
“Start off 2020 With a New Awareness for Every Season This Year!: Vital Asthma Warning Signs for Spring, Summer, Fall, and Winter”. allergyarizona.net/asthma-warning-signs-during-any-seasons/.