Important questions and answers on allergy and pollen count
According to the latest studies, around 30 million people in Germany suffer from an allergy. In many cases, those affected are exposed to regular allergic reactions. Allergy sufferers suffer from hay fever due to the onset of pollen.
Even today, children grow up “clinically pure” and thus hardly have the opportunity to train their immune system adequately. For example, the latest studies show that children on farms suffer far less from allergies than people in urban areas. In 2002, an international team of researchers published the so-called "ALEX study". They demonstrated that children in rural areas suffer a lot less from asthma and hay fever. In addition, the children examined in the countryside showed atopic sensitization. Recent studies have investigated the causes. She discovered that the positive effects are caused by raw milk, bacteria and regular stall contact. "When it matures, the immune system lacks contact with immune-activating substances from nature, for example bacteria that occur in manure," explains the expert and medical doctor Prof. Ludger Klimek from the Center for Rhinology and Allergology in Wiesbaden. Due to the progressive climate change, the pollen count increases almost every year. In addition, "pollution leads to more aggressive allergens", as Prof. Torsten Zuberbie from the University Clinic Charité Berlin explains.
Overreaction of the immune system Actually, the immune system's job is to protect the body from harmful external influences. Doctors assume that allergy sufferers are too sensitive to actually harmless substances such as pollen. The body then responds to an inflammatory reaction with the help of the defense cells in order to remove the alleged intruder. The result: watery eyes, itchy skin, sneezing, runny nose and runny nose.
Allergies can also only appear in adulthood. In the course of life everyone can develop an allergy. To date, the exact circumstances have not been conclusively clarified. The fact is that genetic positions play a role. For example, children of allergic parents are also more likely to develop an allergy.
Homeopathy for Pollen Allergy According to Dr. Karl-Heinz Friese from Weil can also treat allergies with the help of homeopathy. For example, agents such as Allium cepa, Euphrasia and Ghalphimia glauca are used. The therapies are used before and during the polling season. According to the doctor, "early bloomer allergies can be dampened with injections of formic acid, for example." Except for the Techniker Krankenkasse (TK), the treatment costs are not covered by the statutory health insurance companies and must therefore be billed privately. TK also assumes the therapy costs of homeopathically performed treatments if these are prescribed by a doctor. Ordinances by alternative practitioners are excluded from this.
Naturopathy with a holistic approach In addition to homeopathy, naturopathy can also be used. In naturopathy, naturopaths generally do not view pollen allergy as a problem of the nose, but of the entire human body. Accordingly, there are numerous concepts that are aimed at “overreacting” the human immune defense system back into the healthy immunological regulatory process. In most cases, autologous blood therapy, hypnosis, Bach flower therapy and intestinal rehabilitation are carried out by naturopaths or naturopaths.
Hyposensitization from conventional medicine In conventional medicine, hyposensitization is usually used. During this conventional medical treatment, the allergen is gradually added to the immune system at higher and higher doses per injection or tablet. It is assumed that immunological habits subsequently set in. A few years ago, the total time of therapy was three years. So-called short-term immunotherapies, which last about six to eight weeks, are already available. Many patients experience allergic reactions and circulatory problems such as dizziness during treatment. Hyposensitization is quite successful with bee venom allergy (90 percent) and pollen allergy (80 percent). According to medical circles, the success rate for house dust allergy is around 75 percent.
New allergies can develop after hyposensitization. Hyposensitization is criticized, however, because other allergies often develop after treatment. Prof. Ludger Klimek says that allergies “rarely come alone” and refers to further studies that patients have observed over a long period of time. Every third person who underwent hyposensitization develops a different allergy in later life. "Hyposensitization creates habituation to certain allergens, but it does not change the fact that the immune system misinterprets the environment," says Dr. Erwin Häringer from Munich. In his opinion, natural medicine can intervene to regulate this.
In addition to pollen allergy, there are other allergies such as medicines, bee venom and food allergies. These are very dangerous because they can lead to anaphylactic shock. However, if hay fever is not treated, the allergy can spread to the bronchi and lead to reactions to other respiratory mucous membranes. (sb)