Allergens are common to all us which puts us in equal position against them. However, for some people something happens in their bodies that makes them more prone to allergens while other people tend to have characteristics prime to the development of allergic reactions. Below are the most common predisposing factors of allergy:
Prior to the development of science, allergists already have the firm belief that allergies can be slipped into the bloodstream of the infant during pregnancy. It turns out, this old belief holds water- at least partially. Allergies can develop even while the baby is still in the womb. However, the onset of symptoms commonly occurs several years afterwards.
When your parents passed their genes to you, they passed along with them diseases, disorders and things that you wish you can get away from. Also, they tossed in the genes to make you prone to allergies- if either one or both of them were allergic, that is. Genetics is the culprit for many things including allergy. According to studies, you are 60% more likely to develop your own type or the same type of allergies as your parents had if both of them were allergic.
Your chances get better if only one of them had allergies, then you become 30% likely to develop allergies. For most of us though who were graced with parents who had somehow developed immunity or rather did not develop allergies, we are only 15% likely to become allergic. This means that the genes dictate how sick one can be in the face of pollens, certain types of foods and animal dander.
The good news is, these risk percentages are only indications of possibilities. Not everyone with 60% possibility of inheriting allergies actually have them. Conversely, not everyone who had healthy parents will fail to develop allergies.
Allergy is not fully anchored on genetics and heredity though. There are other factors that determine whether you would clam up with allergens or not.
It was found out that premature babies are also more likely to have allergic reactions than those babies who had full term. Also, within the medical community it is believed that babies who were born in a high-pollen seasons have higher likelihood of developing hay fever. Bottle-fed babies also run the risk of developing allergies in comparison with breastfed babies.
Some people are lucky enough to carry the genetic predisposition to develop allergies as well as live in a conducive environment for allergen exposure. Not many people experience that. Children who grew up in places where there are higher pollen quantities, industrial pollution, dust, insects and other allergens are a lot more exposed to allergens than their counterparts.
With continuous exposure, it is possible for the immune system to exaggerate its reaction towards allergens, thereby producing allergic reactions.
One of the tell-tale examples that proves that environment act a major role in the development of allergies is the study conducted in Germany. A decade after the reunification of the East and West Germany, allergies incidence exploded. Nowadays, all of Germany is plagued with all sorts of allergies.
The immune system generally weakens when not exposed to diseases, germs and harmful elements. Proponents of this belief as cause of allergy have found out that Westerners are far more prone to allergies than their counterparts in other parts of the globe.