The NHS Choices Behind the Headlines project in the UK analyzes claims that there is an epidemic of home allergies. Excerpt:
At least 12 million Britons now suffer from allergies caused by dust mites, The Independent has today reported. The newspaper says that a report by the charity Allergy UK has revealed an epidemic of “home fever”, a range of symptoms caused by dust mites and other triggers around the home.
The report has been published as part of Indoor Allergy Week, which is intended to raise awareness of the kind of steps that can be taken to remove allergy triggers, or ‘allergens’, from the home. A survey in the report suggests that, currently, around two-thirds of people with allergies experience symptoms such as sneezing and itchy eyes caused by allergens including dust mites, chemicals, pets and mould.
This new report raises lots of questions, such as whether its small survey of symptoms in 1,600 allergy sufferers is actually strong enough evidence to suggest that there is an epidemic sweeping the nation.
Also, the report’s suggestions to change your mattress and use an air filter are likely to raise a few eyebrows since the awareness week is being run in conjunction with a mattress company and an air filter manufacturer.
Yet another disease awareness campaign that deserves the scrutiny that Behind the Headlines applied. Read their full review.
*This blog post was originally published at Gary Schwitzer's HealthNewsReview Blog*