Do allergies mellow with age?!

I was chatting yesterday with a friend I have known for about 20 years. She has allergy related asthma like myself and sometimes we stop to chat to see how the other is getting on. She is a very active lady in her seventies and I was fascinated to hear from her that her allergies seem to be much less of an issue these days, to the point where she has stopped taking some of her medications which includes the obvious antihistamines and has also stopped worrying about dust. It led me wonder if she might be experiencing a mellowing of her allergies due to old age, or perhaps the immune sysytem had just got tired of reacting!? Whatever the cause, she says she has been very well as regards asthma....

So is there hope for us middle-aged people with allergies, that perhpas our struggles may soon be over, as old age stops the problem as it causes other parts not to work as well???!!


3 Replies

  • Hi Twizzle,

    yep, generally the immune system is less effective when you get older (so old people are more at risk from infections eg flu, which is why they get the flu jag), so if you have a hyperreactive immune system you are likely to have less problems with it as you get older. Roll on old age!

    Sarah (currently a big blob of histamine)

  • Thanks Sarah, so I only have 10 to 20 years of struggle to go!!!

    Best wishes,


    PS On reflection perhaps my own allergies are not as lethal to me now as they were earlier in life, with my rhinitis responding to air bourne nasties much slower than in my early twenties...

  • Sometimes...

    Well I used to have bad hay fever, allergies to dogs and cats and various other things as a child. I noticed that by my 20s the animal ones went (and I finally got dogs and cats!), and by my 30s the hey fever went (as did the last rements of my bad childhood eczema).

    I'm 42 now, and although I know that this is the decade where the immune system starts its ineviatable decline, I don't see that this was a reason for the changes in my 20s and 30s. I think sometimes you just build up a better tolerance - although I know that for some people the reverse happens. I still have a couple of nut allergies, but that's about it, so for kids with allergies there is hope (I haven't taken any anti-histamines in 10-15 years now, as a kid I took shed loads!).


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