Alcohol may well cause you to feel both relaxed and confident for certain occasions but for some people it can have terrible side effects. It’s something rare though, but if you continue to drink alcohol relentlessly, you could be one of those who develops an alcohol allergy.

What it is essentially, is a toxic reaction to alcohol, or ethanol to be more specific. You have to take it seriously as this type of allergy to alcohol can be deadly. Apart from the usual physical and mental impairment, you could suffer with nausea, headaches, difficulty with breathing, stomach cramps and flushed skin.

Antihistamines Do Little to Help with Alcohol Allergies

There is no proper cure for an alcohol allergy. But having said that, there are treatments for the symptoms of alcohol allergy. If your skin is having a reaction to rubbing alcohol in some instances a topical cream can calm and sooth a rashes.

If you want to steer clear of an alcohol allergy, the best thing you can do is to simply refrain from drinking alcohol completely to prevent suffering some of the nasty symptoms.

If you do experience a mild allergic reaction to alcohol, some unsubstantiated sources report that over-the-counter antihistamines from a pharmacy can help, however we believe this will do little to help with an alcohol allergy if it is consumed.

Intolerance or Allergy to Alcohol– Much the Same

There is also what is known as an alcohol intolerance. Alcohol allergies are caused by the immune system reacting and intolerance is a reaction from the digestive system.

Most times, alcohol intolerance is a reaction to one of the ingredients in alcohol. Symptoms of an alcohol intolerance include –

  • Flushed face
  • Headaches
  • Stuffy nose
  • Diarrhea
  • Asthma
  • Dizziness
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Low blood pressure.

These are symptoms you can’t play around with.

The Best Course of Treatment – Avoidance

People who are allergic to alcohol should avoid drinking it altogether. Those with a true alcohol allergy will find that even small amounts of alcohol can cause symptoms. In fact, it can even cause anaphylaxis, which is a life-threatening allergic reaction.

Your immune system over-reacts to contact with an allergen. It treats alcohol as a threat. It produces antibodies that are known as immunoglobulin E, and it is these antibodies that trigger the allergic reaction in the body.

Avoid Binge Drinking

There are a number of factors that play a role in the way a person responds to their alcohol consumption. Weight and tolerance levels come into play, but everyone is different and nothing is set in stone.

There is really no way to determine how much a person can drink before they are at risk of developing an alcohol allergy. Certainly, downing excessive amounts of alcohol in a short space of time will significantly increase your chances of dangerous consequences.

People who get to a party and gulp down alcohol too quickly can put themselves in a life-threatening situation, regardless of how well they tolerate alcohol. Alcohol poisoning can affect anyone and at any time. If you have tolerated alcohol well up until now, your situation can change, and even binge drinking can change things in an instant.

Your Behavior Becomes Foolish

Drinking too much and too quickly is deadly and it can mean significant impairments in making rational decisions. You could make a fool of yourself at the party with the way you behave.

With so much alcohol in your bloodstream, you’re actually at risk of your heart rate and temperature shutting down. The people at the party you’re attending may be alarmed to see you with mental confusion, vomiting, gasping for breath, a clammy skin and dulled responses.

When you do get back to the office, if you make it back alive that is, you may be surprised to see that some of your colleagues view you with disdain instead of the respect they once had for you. Alcohol overdose and alcohol allergy can even lead to permanent brain damage.

The Body can’t Cope with the Flood of Alcohol

Anyone who consumes too much alcohol is in danger of developing an alcohol allergy. Young adults are often at risk of an alcohol allergy as they often engage in binge drinking as well as high-intensity drinking with friends. Drinking these huge quantities of alcohol can flood the body and hamper its ability to clear alcohol from the bloodstream.

Blood Alcohol Concentration or BAC as it is known can actually continue to rise even once the person has stopped drinking. Alcohol continues to enter the bloodstream and circulate throughout the body.

Therefore it is dangerous to believe that a person who has passed out will just sleep the alcohol attack off. Many a person has passed out like that and choked on their own vomit from lack of oxygen. With a dulled brain, the person can’t even respond to the vomit-reflex.

Allergy Reaction after Small Consumption

Those with an alcohol allergy can experience a reaction after even as little as 1 milliliter of pure alcohol. Some people always just associate alcohol as the drinks you buy at a bottle store.

In fact, there are foods that we consume every day that have alcohol in them such as food marinades just for starters. Some medicines have alcohol in them and even some fruit that has become overripe.

Some people are allergic to some of the ingredients you find in alcoholic drinks and these can be wheat, yeast or rye for instance. Others have an intolerance to sulfites. These are compounds, often added to beer and wine, and particularly white wine, so as to act as a preservative.

You can experience allergy-like reactions to sulfites and it can also quite likely trigger an asthmatic attack.

People who can’t tolerate alcohol can develop stuffy nose and a rash as though they had measles, The body isn’t able to break down alcohol efficiently.

Recognizing an Alcohol Allergy

A person should never ignore the symptoms of an allergic reaction. You can unexpectedly develop an alcohol allergy at any stage of your life.

Just because you’ve tolerated alcohol fairly well for years doesn’t mean you can’t suddenly develop an intolerance. If you develop allergic reactions from drinking alcohol, you just have to make an appointment to see your doctor.

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