Gadget allergy triggers runny nose and rash

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According to some online reports it seems that those of us who suffer from seasonal allergies, which we politely refer to as hayfever over here in the UK, might have more than just pollen and plants to blame for our runny noses, watering eyes and itchy skin. One medical evaluation site seems to be suggesting that the use of modern technology could act as a trigger for these allergic events.

The use of cell phones, and myriad other wireless technologies, has without doubt brought with it a medical debate concerning the dangers of exposure to radiation and microwaves resulting in skin rashes, fatigue and headaches. But the latest research tends to suggest that, for those who already suffer from the most common allergies at least, gadgets such as your iPhone or PDA could also be acting as a trigger by increasing sensitivity to allergens. Cell phone users might also cause rashes in those with a sensitivity to metals used in the manufacturing process such as nickel (phone casings and batteries) which is cited as a leading reactor of skin allergies and could mean cell phone users are susceptible to allergic contact dermatitis.

"In addition to the typical pollen-producing allergies that are rampant during the months of spring, technophiles should take caution that some of their favorite gadgets may be the culprit of certain allergy symptoms," said Dr. Todd Rosengart, Chief Cardiothoracic Surgery at Stony Brook University Medical Hospital and Chief Medical Advisor of MDX Medical, which created Vitals. According to the American Academy of Allergy Asthma and Immunology, allergies affect more than 50 million people in the U.S. with more than half the population testing positive to one or more allergens. "Whether it's seasonal, food or even technology-related, allergy sufferers can easily combat uncomfortable symptoms and find relief through medication and simple lifestyle changes recommended by a qualified doctor," said Rosengart.