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Symptoms

Read about the main symptoms of an allergic reaction, including sneezing, wheezing, itchy eyes and shortness of breath.

Symptoms of an allergic reaction usually develop within a few minutes of being exposed to something you're allergic to, although occasionally they can develop gradually over a few hours.

Although allergic reactions can be a nuisance and hamper your normal activities, most are mild. Very occasionally, a severe reaction called anaphylaxis can occur.

Main allergy symptoms

Common symptoms of an allergic reaction include:

Severe allergic reaction (anaphylaxis)

In rare cases, an allergy can lead to a severe allergic reaction, called anaphylaxis or anaphylactic shock, which can be life-threatening.

This affects the whole body and usually develops within minutes of exposure to something you're allergic to.

Signs of anaphylaxis include any of the symptoms above, as well as:

Anaphylaxis is a medical emergency that requires immediate treatment. Read more about anaphylaxis for information about what to do if it occurs.

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