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1670 ROUTE 34 N. 3R FLOOR SUITE 3C WALL • NJ 07727

Michael Rothman MD Articles

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Do Allergies Condemn Us?

Do Allergies Condemn Us to Being Eternally Pill-Popping Snifflers?

Or is There a Way Out?

Allergies. You wouldn’t wish them on your worst enemy. Then again, your worst enemy probably already has allergies. As do most of your friends. And, well, so might you. What’s more annoying–the runny nose, the watery eyes, the hives, the asthma, the pill-popping, and the side effects of those pills? Or is it the fact that you can never seem to get a straight answer as to “the why,” “the how,” and “the what to do to really prevent allergies.” Doctors? At best, they just might seem too busy or frazzled to walk you through the “complexities” of the inflammatory pathways of allergic reactions. At worst, doctors themselves might not have seen the latest research, as they are often overburdened by a system pressured by the pharmaceutical or health-insurance special interests. After all, even commercials tell us to go “ask our doctors” about all sorts of allergy meds, from Allegra to Zyrtec.

Whatever the case may be, nobody will argue that it’s often more cost-effective for a doctor to give you a short check-up, followed by a scribble on that all-too-familiar blue slip of paper. You hope that’ll bring you the relief you’ve been looking for. Relief, assuming you don’t end up with one (or more) of the many different side effects that are possible from allergy meds such as headaches, sleeping problems, dry mouth, fatigue, stomach pain, nervousness, or diarrhea. And those are the minor ones. There are of course, always more serious side effects that require you to immediately notify your doctor if they occur. But those are, you know, rare. And then there’s always the chance that the drug might get pulled off the shelves somewhere down the road for side effects that have yet to be determined dangerous enough. But again, the chances of that ever happening are pretty rare….right?

If you’re on allergy meds right now and you’re satisfied with their effects, satisfied with having to take them as often as you do, and satisfied with how much you know about where exactly allergies come from, well then this blog posting is not for you. However, you might have taken allergy medications, but have stopped them because of the side effects, the expense, or a bit of unease as to what they might be doing to your body over the long-term. Or you might be simply curious as to what exactly allergies can tell you about what’s really going on in your body. If that’s the case, read on, post questions at the end, and see them answered. Or come to Friday’s talk and have them answered in person!

What kinds of things can you expect Dr. Rothman to bring up in Friday’s talk? Stuff you won’t hear in your average doctor’s office, that’s for sure. For example, for those of us who have experienced severe allergic reactions, we know that epinephrine (aka adrenaline) is first given to open up the breathing passages, since this is the most immediate danger for those in anaphylactic shock (fancy name for a really bad allergic reaction). Afterwards, this can be followed by short-term treatment by cortico-steroids. Prednisone might sound familiar. Both epinephrine and steroids are secreted by the adrenal gland and are used by the body to maintain a condition of balance during situations where a chemical called histamine is released. Histamine is responsible for many of the allergic reactions we all know and love. We need some of it to maintain good health–histamine plays a major role in the inflammatory pathway that increases immune system activity when we need it. The adrenal gland helps keeps a natural state of balance by secreting anti-inflammatory steroids such as cortisol as well as adrenaline. Sometimes, our bodies can be thrown off balance, with the culprits usually being the types of foods we eat, and the constant onslaught of toxic chemicals in our environment. At first, our body tries to keep the balance going, by sending our adrenal glands into overdrive. However, all this stress on those poor little glands weakens them over time, leading to the very scientific term of “adrenal fatigue.”

What is adrenal fatigue? Dr. Rothman will show us how adrenal fatigue fits into the (much) larger picture of how to best overcome not allergies, but the imbalances in your body that are causing the allergies. Dr. Rothman plows through the surface, (where conventional medical practice sometimes begins and ends) and gets down to the root of what’s making you sick. More importantly, he’ll teach you the essentials you need to know to start making real changes and feeling a real difference.

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