At Walk-In To Wellness, we perform allergy testing on patients with chronic sinusitis, rashes, and asthma
to determine what exposure causes inflammation and results in decreasing your immune system’s
proper function. Allergy testing is one of the best ways to see if you have indoor, outside, or food
allergies. We can then devise a treatment based on the results and over time help with many of your
allergy symptoms, such as a cough, shortness of breath, stomach issues, and fatigue. Most importantly,
your customized immunotherapy treatment is not simply covering up the symptoms but improving your
What is an Allergy?
An allergy occurs when your body reacts to certain things, like pollen or cats, that don’t affect most
other people. If you come into contact with something you are allergic to (also called an allergen), you
may have symptoms such as itching or sneezing. This is what is commonly called an allergic reaction.
How Skin Testing is Conducted
The best way to test for allergies is through what is known as skin testing. There are essentially two
types of skin tests which doctors and health technicians perform:
- Scratch Testing – Also known as percutaneous testing, in this test a minute drop of a potential
allergen is scratched into the skin and the body’s reaction is closely monitored. This is the most
common form of allergy testing.
- Intradermal Testing – In this test, a small amount of a potential allergen is injected under the
skin using a thin needle. This type of testing is often used to test for allergies to insect stings or
What to Expect During a Skin Test
During a skin test, a number of different allergens will usually be tested. It generally takes about five to
ten minutes to place the allergens on your skin. For adults, these allergens are usually placed upon the
forearm, whereas the back is the most common testing site for children. After the allergens are placed
on the sin, the tester will wait roughly 15 minutes to see if any small, red lumps appear where any of the
allergens were placed.
You should also be aware that the tests may hurt slightly. In addition, if you are sensitive to any of the
allergens, your skin may itch at the location where the allergen was placed.
Preparing for Skin Testing
If you are scheduled to undertake allergy testing, here are some things you should do prior to testing:
- Tell your allergist about all the medicines you are taking, including any over-the-counter
- Do not take antihistamines for three to seven days prior to the test. Ask your allergist when to
stop taking them. However, it is okay to use nasal steroid sprays and asthma medicines, as they
will not interfere with skin tests. If you are unsure whether your medications may interfere with
testing, talk to your allergist’s staff before the scheduled test.
Is Skin Testing Safe?
Only very small amounts of allergens are tested on your skin, meaning skin testing is perfectly safe.
During the testing, the allergist will carefully monitor for any possible severe allergic reactions, but these
very rarely occur.
Skin Test Results
Once your allergist administers the test, they will be able to quickly determine whether or not an allergic
reaction is present. If you are sensitive to an allergen, a small, red bump usually appears on the skin
where that allergen was placed. The larger the bump, the more sensitive you may be to it. These results
are called positive skin tests and mean that you may be allergic to the allergen tested.
Even if a skin test shows that you’re allergic to something, however, you may not react to it when you’re
exposed to it later. Your allergist will carefully review your medical history and skin test results to help
find out what you’re allergic to.
What happens if the skin test shows I have allergies?
If your skin testing results are positive, your allergist will create a plan for controlling your allergies. This
means preventing and treating symptoms. You should take the following steps to help reduce the
chances of allergic reactions:
- Avoid or limit contact with your allergens. If you’re allergic to dust mites, for example, reduce
the clutter in your house, which collects dust.
- Take the proper medicine to relieve your symptoms. Your allergist may prescribe medicines such
as antihistamines, decongestants, nasal steroid sprays, or eye drops.
- Get allergy shots, especially if your allergist says you should. Allergy shots may be necessary
when you cannot avoid an allergen. These shots contain a tiny, but increasing, amount of the
allergen you are sensitive to. Whether given in shot form or orally under the tongue,
immunotherapy involves giving gradually increasing doses of the substance to which you are
allergic. These small increases over time in the amount of your allergen – things like dust, pollen,
mold, and pet dander – cause the immune system to become less sensitive to it. This reduces
your allergy symptoms when you come across the allergen in the future. Immunotherapy also
reduces the inflammation that comes with hay fever and asthma.
Does My Insurance Cover Allergy Skin Testing?
The good news is that most health insurance plans cover both allergy testing and treatment. Just to be
sure, ask your insurance provider:
- If you need a referral from your doctor to see an allergist.
- Whether your insurance covers patient education or special services for your allergies.
- What allergy testing and medicines your plan covers.
Schedule an Allergy Test and Consultation Today
Are you suffering from constant headaches, sneezing, itchiness or stuffed noses? At Walk-In to
Wellness, we have everything you need to help you beat your allergies. We specialize in offering holistic
and effective treatments for patients who want to get the most out of life. We offer a wide array of
non-medicinal, alternative treatments for common health and wellness ailments. So if you are tired of
dealing with the symptoms of allergies, text us today to start your wellness journey.