Nathaniel's Severe Seasonal Allergies (Q&A)

Read about how Nate's allergies have impacted his life.


Compiled by Bryce Poston, Blogs Committee Chair

1/19/20242 min read

Nathaniel Meyer, Chicago, IL, University of Chicago Laboratory Schools, Class of 2027

Q: What allergies do you have?

A: “Extreme Seasonal Allergies”

Q: How and when did you find out you had an allergy?

A: “I first found out that I had an allergy when I was about four years old, and that was to penicillin. When I was in second grade, I felt really miserable in the springtime, and this then carried over to the summer and fall. I got tested relatively recently, about a year and a half ago, which just confirmed what I thought. I also started taking medications then.”

Q: What’s the biggest allergic reaction you’ve had?

A: “About two years ago, my allergies felt like they got really bad; they were to the point where I was breathing out of my mouth for months on end because I couldn’t breathe out of my nose. I was sneezing constantly, and this caused me to be miserable all the time over the course of these six months.” Asked: Was this what caused you to go in and get tested? “Yes, this is what made me want to go get tested for seasonal allergies and get a medication. I take Flonase every day, then Singulare, Zyrtec, and Azelastine when allergies get tough. I am also considering taking allergy shots every week for the next ten years, but I don’t know exactly what I’m going to do right now.”

Q: How has your allergy shaped who you are today?

A: “I think it has changed my everyday life 100%. I feel miserable often, and I feel like I can’t breathe properly as well. It also doesn’t keep me motivated to do stuff such as do homework; it’s like I’m sick, and sometimes I’m hopeless.”

Q: How has your allergy affected your daily life (what precautions do you have to take)?

A: “I stay away from dogs because I am allergic to them. I try not to create mold in my showers or other places, and I do this by airing it out. I also had to get rid of my entire stuffed animal collection because the stuffed animals lured dust, and I am allergic to dust, and that made me cry.”

Q: Have you thought about or tried desensitization?

A: “For my penicillin allergy, I went to the doctor’s office for 4 hours. They first gave me a half dose of penicillin, though I don’t know how much that is, and then an hour and a half later, after lots of observation, they gave me a full dose of penicillin. I felt nothing after the fact, so now I no longer have a penicillin allergy.” Asked: in regards to your seasonal allergies, do you have any way to desensitize them? “Yes, by taking these shots every week, the doctors say that I will be able to overcome this.”