If you’ve done any amount of research, you know that there are quite a few options out there to choose from for allergy testing. If you are looking for the best advice on which test to get for your needs, it’s important to take a look at how they compare with each other. The option that you’ll find leading the pack is an allergy blood test. But why? What makes it so special compared to the other methods of allergy testing?
Benefits of an allergy blood test
- There is no chance of a reaction during the test: Occasionally, a skin prick test can result in a severe reaction in the body called anaphylaxis. This can also happen in rare cases during an oral test, too. Even as rare as they are, this can be scary for those who are prone to severe allergic reactions. In this case, blood allergy test does the actual test on a blood sample outside of the body in a lab, so there is absolutely no chance of a reaction occurring.
- It’s more effective for food allergies: A skin prick test is still argued to be the most affecting testing method overall, but not with food allergies themselves. The skin testing method can actually offer up false positives and negatives depending on skin conditions, medications and more. Accurate and conclusive results for food allergies, specifically best come from a blood allergy test.
- You can do it from home: A skin prick test and an oral test must be done in clinical and medical settings. A blood sample test, since it’s as simple as applying the blood to a card and sending it off to a lab, can be done from home on your own time. This is a benefit for both time management as well as creature comforts.
What to keep in mind with other options
It’s important to remember that there other options for allergy testing and there is no harm in exploring all of your options before making a decision. Here’s a bit of information to keep in mind about other testing methods:
- Skin testing: Skin testing can be great when you are looking at getting back results before you leave an appointment. Since the results will show up in the form of a welt over the injected allergen on the arm, you’ll be able to have the information you need as soon as the test is over. For those with especially strong or time-sensitive needs, this is great. However, skin testing can be hard for those who are on medications such as beta-blockers and psychiatric prescriptions due to their interaction with the test itself.
- Oral testing: Oral testing is often used the last resort since it often includes feeding the allergen to the person over a period of time and monitoring a reaction on medical equipment. While it is effective in monitoring it with food allergies, it can increase the risk of an anaphylactic reaction, especially if the allergy is severe. It must be done carefully and in an experienced medical facility for this reason.
The bottom line is that, when it comes to allergy testing, you have options. While an allergy blood test will offer you more conclusive results than a skin prick test, you could look at doing a combination of the two, or even consider a blood test with an oral test to confirm. The options are yours!