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Kissing and Sex Allergies Spell Trouble, but Treatable

Kathleen Blanchard's picture

Kissing and sex can trigger allergic reactions that can sometimes be severe. Allergist says itching, rash and wheezing after kissing or intimacy might be more common than known, spelling trouble, especially for those who don’t know where the problem is coming from.

According to Sami Bahna, MD, president of the American College of Asthma and Immunology, “If you have food allergies, having an allergic reaction immediately after kissing someone who has eaten the food or taken oral medication that you are allergic to isn’t highly unusual. But some patients react after their partner has brushed his or her teeth or several hours after eating. It turns out that their partners’ saliva is excreting the allergen hours after the food or medicine has been absorbed by their body.”

If kissing leads to itching, hives, rash or wheezing for your partner, the allergists recommend avoiding the offending food for 16 t 25 hours before smooching. To make kissing safer, brush your teeth and rinse your mouth, but for some even that might not work.

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For one 30-year-old doctor, kissing his girlfriend repeatedly induced an anaphylactic reaction even though his girlfriend ate peanuts two hours before kissing him. She had brushed, rinsed her mouth and chewed gum. When kissing turns dangerous, it’s time to see an allergist for the right treatment.

Lubricants, Spermicides and Semen can Cause Allergies Too

Intimacy can also lead to allergic reactions related to lubricants, spermicides, latex and a partner’s semen. The sheer act of sex can produce hives from natural chemicals released during physical exertion and excitement.

"There may be more who are suffering from this than we know because people may be embarrassed to bring it up," said Dr. Bahna. "But allergists can help determine what's causing the allergy and find the right treatment. No one has to suffer."

For mild semen allergies, the allergy specialists suggest anti-histamines before sex might help. Don't take anything too strong that can lead to drowsiness. Other treatments include using a condom or desensitization treatment, like the kind given for ragweed and other seasonal allergies. Kissing and sex allergies could be more common than known, but are treatable and worth a visit to an allergy specialist for treatment.




Hi I have a rash on and under my nose which started when I met my partner. Went and seen my doctor and was told it was a form of rosacea and was given a cream it did help but had to use it daily and would still have odd breakout. We parted and I kept using the cream and nose was clear so stopped using it and rash didn't come back. We recently got back together and straight away rash came back its horrible please any answers as to why I'm allergic to him would be much appreciated and yes seems to be only him.