Summertime means many great things: sunshine, ice cream trucks, barbecues, swimming, and time off. It also means sneezing, dry eyes, and runny noses for those who suffer from allergies.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 50 million people in the U.S. suffer from allergies each year — that’s more than one in 10 people! And while you might have guessed that allergies are fairly common, you might not know just how common they are.
Allergic Rhinitis (Hay Fever)
Around the world, allergic rhinitis affects between 10% and 30% of people. Domestically, it affects 8.1% of people over the age of 18. Though that figure may seem small, the CDC reports that about 19.9 million people were diagnosed with hay fever in 2017.
About five percent of the U.S. population is affected by insect sting allergies. While that percentage may seem low, this allergy can prove fatal. Insect sting anaphylaxis leads to at least 90 deaths each year!
When you think about insect sting allergies, odds are that you think of bee stings, but ant bites can also trigger episodes. What’s more, cockroaches and dust mites can also cause skin or nasal symptoms.
Solar Urticaria (Sun Hives)
If you suggest catching rays to your friend and they run and hide, they might suffer from sun hives or solar urticaria.
A sun allergy, as it’s also sometimes called, is an allergy that causes hives to form on the patient’s skin after being exposed to the sun, and only from solar exposure.
Though it is rare, it can affect a person of any race and any age. The median age of a patient’s first breakout is 35.
Allergies are the sixth leading cause of chronic illness in the U.S., costing the nation in excess of $18 billion. Though the numbers may make it seem as though allergies are rarer than man think, they’re nothing to sneeze at.
Fortunately, many over-the-counter medicines are available to help. If you suffer from a more severe allergy, though, consider getting help at an emergency care facility.