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You are here: Home > Asthma & Allergy Facts > Allergy Facts
Allergy Overview
Allergiesáareádiseases of the immune system that cause an overreaction to substances called "allergens."áAllergiesáare grouped by the kind of trigger, time of year or where symptoms appear on the body: indooráand outdoor allergies (also called "hay fever," "seasonal," "perennial" or "nasal" allergies), food and drug allergies, latexáallergies, insect allergies, skin allergies and eye allergies. 
Allergy Statistics
  • Over 50 million Americans suffer from allergies.
  • Approximately 55 percent of all U.S. citizens test positive to one or more allergens.
  • Allergies are the 6th leading cause of chronic disease in the United States.
  • Allergies cost the health care system about $18 billion annually.
  • Chronic sinusitis is the most commonly reported chronic disease, affecting about 35 million Americans.
  • People who suffer from sinusitis miss about 4 days of work each year because of their illness.
  • Allergic dermatitis (itchy rash) is the most common skin condition in children younger than 11 years of age. The percentage of children diagnosed with it has increased from 3% in the 1960s to 10% in the 1990s.
Tips to Control Indoor Allergens
Allergy and asthma control begins at home. Many people with allergies stay indoors when outdoor air is full of pollen and spores. But dust mites, animal dander and even cockroaches can cause problems indoors. TheáEPA recommends three strategies for reducing indoor air pollution.
  • Controlling sources of pollution
  • Ventilating adequately
  • Cleaning indoor air
Controlling the air quality in your home, office, schooláand car can greatly reduce allergy and asthma triggers.