We’ve collected the essential allergy statistics and facts that’ll help you understand allergies.
The article below will provide you with an overview of allergies, how widespread they are, and how dangerous they can be.
What are the Top 10 Allergy Statistics?
- Around 33% of people with allergies in America are allergic to cats and dogs.
- Eight major food allergens cause 90% of allergic reactions.
- About 1% of the population should avoid gluten.
- 8% of children in America suffer from food allergies.
- About 32 million people in the US suffer from food allergies.
- There were 65 peanut allergy-related deaths in the US since 1985.
- There are over 170 foods that cause allergies.
- Food allergies cost the US roughly $24.8 billion per year.
- Around 60 million Americans suffer from hay fever.
- 20% of the population has allergic rhinitis, asthma, food allergies, and dermatitis.
Allergies are no laughing matter. Being adequately informed can sometimes represent the difference between life and death. So, read on to find out everything you need to know about allergies!
Pet Allergy Statistics
We love our pets, but unfortunately, our bodies don’t always feel the same. Whether you develop allergies at a young age or they come out of the blue when you get older, it’s never fun.
Here are the key stats on pets. Many may surprise you.
1. Around 33% of people with allergies in America are allergic to cats and dogs.
The AAFA has gathered some interesting data on the percentage of people allergic to cats and dogs. They note that over one-third of people with allergies are allergic to either cats or dogs.
2. Cat allergies are twice as common as dog allergies.
The latest statistics might help all those fence-sitters that can’t decide whether they are a dog or a cat person.
If we compare the allergy percentages, we’ll see that today cat allergies are twice as common as dog allergies.
Furthermore, around 1 in 7 children between the ages of 6 and 19 have problems with cat allergies.
3. You are not allergic to your pet’s hair—but proteins and dander.
An interesting fact that many people aren’t aware of is that you are not allergic to your pet’s fur or hair.
Allergies facts and data show that you react to the proteins found in your pet’s saliva, dander, or urine.
However, some dogs are less likely to trigger allergies, such as the Maltese.
4. Hypoallergenic breeds of cats and dogs do not exist.
This is a pervasive myth dispelled by all relevant allergy statistics and data. There are no hypoallergenic breeds.
The dander of an animal, which most often causes allergic reactions, is not affected by shedding or the length of its fur or hair.
5. Immunotherapy, nasal sprays, and antihistamines can help you with animal allergies.
Sneezing, a runny or stuffy nose, coughing, chest tightness, and hives are all common allergic reactions to animal allergies.
However, you won’t have to get rid of your pets just yet.
Visit your doctor’s office, and you will get some help when it comes to your allergies.
6. Research shows that birds can potentially cause allergies, just like other pets.
A paper published in the Journal of Clinical and Experimental Allergy shows that birds may cause allergies like other pets.
Pet allergy statistics and data show that feather mites are “clinically relevant” sources of allergic symptoms for pigeon breeders.
Still, conclusive data on whether this is relevant for regular owners who only have one or two birds is yet to be gathered.
7. Core allergic symptoms tied to “regular pets” are the same for “exotic” pets.
One in ten households in America has an exotic pet. Interesting facts about allergies show that the symptoms of allergies are the same, no matter if you have a regular or an exotic pet.
These symptoms mainly include respiratory issues.
Food Allergy Statistics and Facts
There are many reasons for food allergies. Unfortunately, they are prevalent in children, though plenty of adults also experience them.
Food allergy research and education are vital, so let’s see some statistics on food allergies and where you stand.
8. Eight major food allergens cause 90% of allergic reactions.
(Nutrition Today, FARE)
Food allergy facts show that the most common allergens are:
- Crustacean shellfish
- Tree nuts
They’re referred to as the “Big 8.” The allergic reactions occur not more than 1–2 hours after consuming the allergens.
Over 8 million Americans are allergic to shellfish. Moreover, nut allergy statistics reveal that over 6 million people in the US are allergic to peanuts and milk.
9. About 1% of the population should avoid gluten.
Gluten avoidance became a trend a couple of years ago, but it’s still trendy. Gluten-free products have created a $2.6 billion market.
However, gluten allergy statistics are pretty straightforward. Only 1% of the population suffers from celiac disease, that is, gluten allergy.
10. Lactose intolerance is not the same as cow’s milk allergy (CMA).
(American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology, NCBI)
Food allergies facts show that between 0.5% and 3% of children suffer from CMA during the first year of their life. However, this is not lactose intolerance.
Lactose intolerance has its troublesome symptoms. But, milk and dairy allergies can lead to vomiting, hives, and even anaphylaxis.
11. Some food allergies are usually outgrown by adulthood.
Some food allergy statistics from 2019 show that many food allergies are usually outgrown by adulthood.
12. 8% of children in America suffer from food allergies.
According to the CDC’s allergy stats, the number of affected children continually rises over the years. Moreover, 2 in 5 children (over 40%) have been treated in the emergency department due to food allergies.
13. About 32 million people in the US suffer from food allergies.
We mentioned the most common allergens. Shellfish, milk, and peanuts cause the majority of allergic reactions.
However, 3.9 million Americans are also allergic to tree nuts. Some 2.6 million should avoid eggs and finfish, while 2.4 million should stay away from wheat.
(National Food Death Allergy Registry)
Peanut allergy statistics are no joke.
The NFDAR started collecting data on food allergy-related deaths in 1985. They show that only 65 people have died from peanut allergies in over 30 years.
Widely accessible peanut allergy facts and education on the matter have helped a lot. They’ve contributed to lowering the average yearly number of peanut allergy-related deaths.
15. The FDA approved the first drug for Peanut Oral Immunotherapy (OIT) in 2020.
Close to 1 million children in the States suffer from a peanut allergy. Unfortunately, only 1 in 5 outgrow it. This new medicine gave hope to many children aged 4–17 suffering from a peanut allergy.
16. There are over 170 foods that cause allergies.
Over 170 foods cause allergic reactions. As we mentioned, milk, wheat, crustacean shellfish, fish, eggs, tree nuts, and peanuts are the most common allergies in the US.
Furthermore, sesame allergies seem to be emerging as well.
17. Food allergies cost the US roughly $24.8 billion per year.
According to facts about food allergies, food allergies carry a high cost to the United States. It’s estimated that cost per child, for example, amounts to $4,184 per year.
Food allergies have also created a $12 billion “free-from” food industry. Yet, there’s only $76 million in public research fundings for NIH to address these allergies.
Pollen, Latex, and Other Common Allergy Facts and Stats
There are plenty of other allergies aside from food and pets. Many can even go undiagnosed for many years. Take a look at what could be causing your hay fever or sneezing.
18. Virginia was the capital of seasonal allergies in 2020, according to allergy statistics by state.
According to data, Richmond, VA, was the most challenging city for spring and fall allergies. But, there were a couple of others at the top of the list:
- Scranton, PA
- Springfield, MA
- Hartford, CT, and
- McAllen, TX
They were also challenging for allergy sufferers.
On the other hand, some of the least challenging cities and states for seasonal allergy sufferers are:
- San Jose, CA
- Boise, ID
- Portland, OR
- Fresno, CA, and
- Milwaukee, WI
So choose wisely where you live if you have allergy problems.
19. Around 60 million Americans suffer from hay fever.
(Healthline, Mayo Clinic)
Allergy facts reveal that the number of people affected with allergic rhinitis is growing. Both outdoor and indoor allergens cause it. Pollen, dust mites, and animal saliva are some of the triggers.
20. Latex allergies are more prevalent among health care workers.
Current NCBI data shows that the prevalence of latex allergy among the general population is only 4.3%.
However, note that this number is much higher for people who work with this material regularly. Health workers, for example, have a prevalence of 9.7%.
21. Around 25 million Americans have asthma.
The relevant asthma statistics show that around 25 million Americans suffer from this condition.
Of this number, 7.7% are adults, and 8.4% are children.
22. Severely adverse reactions to allergenic foods send someone to the emergency room every 3 minutes.
Food allergies can be life-threatening. Food allergy statistics worldwide show that they severely hinder the US health industry and medical institutions.
Among some of the more pressing issues is that these allergies lead to increased emergency room visits.
23. Around 18% of children under 18 in the US suffer from hay fever.
Recent data shows that around 18% of all US citizens under 18 suffer from hay fever.
Also known as “allergic rhinitis,” hay fever occurs when our immune systems overreact to allergens found in the air.
24. 24.4 million Americans suffer from seasonal allergies.
(The Washington Post)
Perennial and seasonal allergy statistics show 12 million visits to the doctor’s office due to seasonal allergies.
Some people only feel the allergies during spring, summer, or early fall, while others suffer all year long. The difference is in what causes these issues.
Perennial allergies are caused by animals, dust mites, and insects, while seasonal occur because of pollen. Both can also be caused by mold.
25. Immunotherapy is very successful at regulating hay fever.
(Florida Medical Clinic)
One of the not-so-fun facts about allergies for needle-phobics is how useful shots are. Namely, 85% of people see a reduction in symptoms after receiving an allergy shot.
Allergy Statistics Worldwide
Allergies aren’t common in the US only. They have become a global problem due to many different factors. Some of the leading factors include the foods we eat, how we live, and much more.
26. Approximately 20% of the global population suffers from allergic rhinitis, asthma, food allergies, and atopic dermatitis.
(Taylor and Francis Group)
The Taylor and Francis allergy research group has discovered that a considerable chunk of the global population suffers from various allergies. Allergy statistics also report that the number has grown notably in the last couple of decades.
These allergies have a severe impact on people’s lives, but they also bring a considerable socioeconomic burden.
27. Food allergies are called the “second wave” of the allergy epidemic. Up to 10% of infants are allergic to some kind of food in certain countries.
Finding food allergy statistics that worldwide organizations and research have procured is challenging. There are too many disparities in the methodologies and reporting among countries.
However, statistics show that food allergies affect most, if not all countries, everywhere.
28. There is research that vitamin D supplements can help with allergies.
(The British Medical Journal)
The evidence collected by the BMJ claims that vitamin D can help with acute respiratory infections. And, in turn, with respiratory-based allergies.
29. Around 339 million people all around the world have asthma.
Allergy statistics worldwide from 2020 show that around 339 million people have asthma. This puts them at a higher risk of specific respiratory allergies.
30. Asthma and Covid-19 have some very similar symptoms.
Symptoms like cough, shortness of breath, rapid breathing, chest tightness, and pain, feeling tired and weak are all possible asthma symptoms and Covid-19.
But don’t panic. The AAFA offers guidelines and tips on how to differentiate between the two. Their infographic will help you with the symptoms, but you should always consult your doctor.
31. The most common chronic disease group in Europe is allergies.
Allergy statistics gathered worldwide show that over 150 million Europeans battle with allergies.
As a group, allergies make up the most common chronic diseases in Europe, with an estimation that more than half of the EU will be affected by the end of 2025.
32. Climate change is making pollen allergies worse.
One of the more grim facts about allergies is that climate change is making pollen allergy seasons worse.
The intensity of allergens is getting higher, and allergen sensitivity itself is rising.
33. Australia is the world’s allergy capital.
All around the globe, millions of people are suffering from allergies. However, Australia is the leader. Food allergies affect 9% of children in the “land down under,” and some allergic reactions are even deadly.
34. What is the most common food allergy in the world?
The most common food allergies are related to eight major foods. The most common food allergies are caused by:
- Crustacean shellfish
- Tree nuts
However, many people are also becoming allergic to sesame seeds.
35. What are the 10 most common allergies?
According to the data on allergy percentages today, you can find the most common allergies below, in no particular order:
- Insect stings
- Animals (hair and saliva)
Note that you will find a great deal of variety in the above allergies.
Everyone is different. Everybody’s body is different so that some people might have trouble with eggs, but no penicillin issues.
36. How many people have peanut allergies?
The food allergy dataset of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease (NIAID) shows that only 0.6%–1% of Americans are allergic to peanuts.
37. What can trigger allergies?
Allergies happen when our immune systems react to a foreign substance or food. Practically anything can trigger an allergic reaction:
- Airborne allergens — animal dander, dust mites, pollen, and mold
- Food allergens — tree nuts, peanuts, soy, fish, wheat, milk, eggs, and shellfish
- Insect sting — wasp, bee, mosquito
- Medications — penicillin or penicillin-based antibiotics
- Latex or other substances we touch
38. How many people have food allergies?
The latest food allergy research reveals that 32 million Americans suffer from food allergies.
What’s even more shocking is that this number also includes 5.6 million children younger than 18.
39. Is there any permanent cure for allergies?
Simply put: no.
However, you can control your symptoms and your issues to a much higher degree than you would expect. Whether it’s merely getting the right dog dander allergy treatment or learning which foods to avoid.
Allergy medicine and lifestyle changes can increase your well-being and quality of life.
Also, there is no specific cure. Sometimes allergies just disappear by themselves, or you outgrow them.
However, no pill or treatment has been entirely scientifically proven to work.
40. How many allergies does the average person have?
This is very difficult to tell. However, there is some data available.
Around 40% of children, for example, who have food allergies are allergic to several foods, not just one.
This isn’t a guarantee that a person who is allergic to some cats will be allergic to dogs as well.
41. How do you know what you’re allergic to?
The good old trial and error are usually pretty useful. However, when it comes to allergies, the consequences can be highly severe. Your best bet is going to a doctor.
You will be subject to a specific kind of test once you are at the doctor’s office.
They’ll most likely use a skin test, where several panels that contain small patches of potential allergens are utilized. These will be placed on your skin for a set amount of time.
If your body reacts to these panels, congratulations, you most likely have an allergy to this specific substance.
42. How common are severe allergies?
The best way you can differentiate between mild and severe allergies is by observing their symptoms or, rather, their severity.
Let’s say the pollen count is pretty high on one day. A mild allergic reaction is a runny nose, itchy eyes. Or, you ate something you shouldn’t, and now you have slight nausea and cramping.
Severe allergies are a different animal. Some symptoms are:
- Severe diarrhea or dehydration
- Complete swelling of your throat – complete obstruction of your breathing and windpipes
- Severe blood pressure drops
All of these could be a sign of severe allergies. However, they’re not as common as mild allergies.
43. What is the most common allergy in the world?
The most common and fatal food allergy is by far the peanut allergy. Luckily, less than 1% of the American population suffers from it.
44. Why do so many people have peanut allergies?
There’s no explanation as to why allergy symptoms and severe allergic reactions are so common. But, when it comes to peanuts, some interesting theories are floating about.
Things like higher hygiene levels in our society have led to stronger immune systems.
However, this has also led to the body overreacting to specific food proteins (like those found in peanuts).
45. What food allergies can children outgrow?
This varies significantly from child to child, but yes, it is possible to outgrow a food allergy.
However, the odds of them outgrowing an allergy depend on the food itself and the severity of their usual reactions.
So, a child that can handle baked goods that contain milk or eggs has a good shot of outgrowing allergies to both later in life.
Shellfish allergies are usually for life.
While tree nut and peanut allergies statistics reveal, they are somewhere in the middle. Around 14% to 20% of children don’t have these allergies later in life.
46. How do I get rid of sinus allergies permanently?
You can’t truly get rid of allergies in general, except in very rare circumstances where you outgrow them.
However, you can mitigate and minimize their symptoms.
Antihistamines and other allergy medications are your best bet to at least get things under control.
47. Do allergies go away with exposure?
There’s no evidence that allergies get better through continual exposure to the allergy trigger.
However, some data claims that exposure to pets at a young age might reduce allergies in later life to some degree.
We hope that these allergy statistics and facts are useful to anyone who wants to learn more about them.
No matter if you’re dealing with a food-based allergen or if one of your pets is causing an allergic reaction, staying safe is vital.
Consult your doctor, see if you can get an allergen test, and always carry the right medication with you.