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Beware of these 10 allergen sources lurking in our homes in UAE

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06-Jul-2019

Dubai: One in three UAE residents suffers from an allergy during summer when dust and humidity are high, say health experts.
 
Dr Sanjeev Awasthi, specialist ENT surgeon at the Emirates Hospital Clinic in Ras Al Khaimah, said: “The most common allergy is hay fever or allergic rhinitis. People are susceptible to outdoor allergens (flying pollen) and indoor allergens as they inhale dust along with fine mites and in many cases, fungal spores. Patients report either frequent nose blocks or runny noses, itchy eyes, itchy palates and sneezing. These symptoms are the body’s inflammatory response to dust, pollen and mites, creating antibodies for protection.”
 
Explaining why the allergy index is high during the summer months, Dr Sandeep Pargi, specialist pulmonologist at the Aster Mankhool Hospital, said: “Dust in this region contains fine silica particles. They not only cover our nasal passage, but can also reach the upper parts of our lungs. We inhale this mixed with pollen and it triggers an allergic response.
 
“At home, indoor air contains the debris of dust mites along with slica and other allergens. Dust mites are fine microorganisms which attach to fibres of furnishings, carpets and rugs. When we inhale, it triggers a histamine response from our body, which includes a runny nose, itchy eyes, etc. Those who are already predisposed to allergies and asthma manifest a definite response. Healthy people with no history of asthma too are likely to fall ill with exposure,” he explained.
 
One of the most common allergy triggers is unclean air-conditioning duct. Cool, damp and humid ducts, when not cleaned frequently, become breeding grounds for molds, fungus and bacteria. When the air-conditioning is switched on, these fine particles fly through the air and are inhaled, triggering strong allergies.
 

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