The human body has an immune system with an intricate process to stay protected from various risks and dangers. Sometimes, our immune system can become hypersensitive to a harmless substance. This is when it triggers an allergic reaction. Inside the body, this reaction means the extra release of the chemical histamine that produces allergy symptoms. Depending on the sensitivity and exposure to the allergen, the reaction can sometimes be life-threatening.
An allergic reaction can be due to touch, smell, or taste. Usually, the skin becomes irritated as part of the body’s response to the allergen. This is called Skin Allergy. One in every five people in the world experiences some or the other form of skin allergy.
In most cases of skin allergies, the treatment involves oral medication and rest at home. However, if the symptoms are severe, the patient has a risk of developing anaphylaxis. Hence, he might have to be urgently hospitalized. In such cases, the costs of treatment can skyrocket. Hence, you need a health insurance plan that covers such allergies.
Tata AIG offers a range of health insurance plans with comprehensive coverage, affordable premiums, a wide network of hospitals, and a quick claim settlement. You can also opt for an add-on cover to boost the coverage of the policy.
For example, if you have a family history of any terminal disease, then you are at a higher risk of developing it. Hence, you can opt for a critical illness insurance add-on to help you easily manage the treatment costs.
In this article, we will talk about the symptoms, causes, treatment, and importance of a health insurance policy for Skin Allergies.
Understanding Skin Allergies
Sometimes, when we touch something, our body reacts to it by developing a rash. This can be a common substance that everyone uses. While nothing happens to them, we might get a rash that itches and/or turns red. This is an allergic reaction to the substance.
Our body’s immune system is designed to identify foreign bodies and protect us from them by releasing histamine. In some individuals, the immune system becomes highly sensitive and responds to seemingly harmless substances too. This is a skin allergy.
Skin Allergy Types
While there are numerous types of skin allergies, here are some of the most common ones:
|Type of skin allergy||Allergens||Symptoms|
|Contact dermatitis||Metals (such as nickel), fragrances, preservatives, and latex||Redness, itching, rash, blisters, and swelling|
|Urticaria||Medications, insect bites or stings, certain foods, and exposure to heat or cold||Raised and itchy bumps on the skin|
|Atopic dermatitis (eczema skin allergy)||Animal dander, cleaning products, and dust||Dry, itchy, and inflamed skin|
|Angioedema||Medications, foods, and insect bites or stings||Deep swelling beneath the skin, typically around the eyes and mouth|
|Photodermatitis||Certain medications, fragrances, and topical skin products. Exposure to sunlight or other sources of ultraviolet light||Redness, itching, and blistering of the skin|
|Dermatitis herpetiformis||Associated with celiac disease and triggered by gluten||Red, raised bumps, or blisters that are often grouped|
Symptoms of Skin Allergies
Since there are different types of immune responses, the symptoms of a skin allergy can vary from person to person. Here are some common symptoms of a skin allergy
Rash Red, bumpy, scaly, or itchy patches of skin, possibly with blisters
Itching You might get an itching sensation that increases with time
Redness The area in contact with the allergen might turn red due to a gush of blood to the area for fighting the allergen
Swelling In some cases, the area might swell up as a reaction to the allergen
Pain Some rashes or sores might be painful to touch
It is important to remember that the symptoms of skin allergies can vary based on the immune system of the individual. Hence, if you are experiencing any of the symptoms listed above, then make sure that you seek medical assistance. There are tests to ascertain the substance that you are allergic to, which can help manage the symptoms and avoid recurrence by taking preventive measures.
Skin Allergy Reasons
Here is a quick list of the common allergens encountered by most people
Certain plants Leaves of plants like poison ivy or poison oak release an oil called urushiol when cut. If this oil gets onto your skin, then it causes an itchy rash with bumps.
Nickel and nickel-based products The most common cause of contact dermatitis. It is used in belt buckles, zippers, and bra hooks.
Fragrances Many people get an allergic reaction to the ingredient that makes fragrances smell good
Household products Household products tend to have a range of metals and other chemicals that can trigger an allergic reaction. Some products are sunscreen lotion, cosmetics, hair dye, and cleaners.
Latex This is natural rubber and is used in products like condoms, baby bottles, balloons, and disposable gloves.
Primarily, a weak immune system is the core cause of an allergic response. Also, if you are allergic to multiple substances and get exposed to more than one allergen, finding the exact cause can be difficult. Seek medical assistance if you notice any symptoms.
Skin Allergy Risk Factors
Here are some factors that increase the risk of getting a skin allergy
People from certain occupations People working in chemical factories, metal industries, healthcare, or hairdressers are exposed to certain chemicals that are known to trigger an allergic reaction.
A history of skin allergies People with a history of skin allergies are at a higher risk of developing it again.
Allergies in the family If a family has a history of allergies, then everyone in the family is exposed to the risk of developing a skin allergy.
Medical conditions People with medical conditions like eczema or asthma are at a higher risk of developing a skin allergy.
Living environment People living in places where dust, pollen, or even animal dander is present, the risk of developing a skin allergy is high.
Skin Allergy Diagnosis
Identifying the allergen causing the reaction is an uphill task even for an experienced dermatologist. While there are many tests to help with the diagnosis, people are developing allergic responses to newer substances making it difficult to have a comprehensive list. Here is how skin allergies are diagnosed.
Step 1 Checking for physical symptoms of the allergy
The doctor examines the patient and looks for signs of a rash, sore, ulcer, or hives. The presence of these symptoms gives him an idea about the type and severity of the allergic reaction.
Step 2 History
The doctor asks the patient about any history of allergies in the family or his/her life. He will also try to understand the sequence of events that led to the reaction and identify a potential allergen.
Step 3 Testing for allergens
Next, the doctor will apply a patch to the patient’s upper arm or back to test for allergens. This patch contains small amounts of potential allergens with physical markers. The doctor asks the patient to keep the patch and revisit him after a few days. The allergens that cause a reaction are then identified as potential problem substances.
Remember, the tests to determine the allergens that trigger a response can take time. Doctors tend to look for the common allergens first and use the elimination rule to narrow down to the substances that you are allergic to. Hence, be patient and help the doctor find the substances that you are allergic to.
Skin Allergy Treatment
Here are the treatment options for different types of skin allergies:
|Type of skin allergy||Treatment||Tips|
|Contact Dermatitis||Ointments or creams to soothe the rash
Oral medication to reduce itching, swelling, or fight an infection
|Avoid the allergen
Use an anti-itch cream
Use a cold compress several times a day
|Eczema||Topical creams, ointments, or gels to control itching and repair the skin
Topical creams, ointments, or gels to control itching and repair the skin
Antibiotic pills for infection if any
Pills to control inflammation
Phototherapy if the medicines are not working
|Urticaria||Prescription anti-itch drugs||Avoid triggers
Use cold compress
Shower with cold water
Wear loose clothing
Track your symptoms
Drugs to suppress the immune system
Drugs for hereditary angioedema
Use cold compress
Shower with cold water
Wear loose clothing
Track your symptoms
|Photodermatitis||Topical or oral medicines to reduce itching and inflammation||Wear Protective clothing
Use sunscreen while going out during the day with high SPF
|Dermatitis herpetiformis||Medicine to reduce itching and inflammation||Gluten-free diet|
Can You Prevent a Skin Allergy?
While avoiding allergens is the best way to avoid an allergic reaction, it is not always possible. Here are some tips to help you prevent skin allergies**
Patch Test If you are using a product on your body for the first time, then apply a small amount to your elbow and wait for 72 hours. If your body does not show any signs of an allergic reaction, then you can use the product
Allergy Test If your doctor suspects allergies, then opt for a test to identify the allergen(s) as it can help you avoid them and create a prevention roadmap
Harsh sunlight Avoid exposure to very harsh sunlight as the UV rays can irritate the skin and cause rashes or hives
Use insect repellents If you are allergic to insect bites, then make sure that you have a powerful insect repellent at home
Why Use a Medical Insurance Plan?
Using a medical insurance plan for skin allergy can help you manage the costs associated with diagnosis, treatment, and ongoing care. Skin allergies are usually handled with medicines, creams, and adequate care. However, in some cases, the symptoms become severe, and the patient needs to be hospitalised.
With a medical insurance plan, you may be able to access treatment without worrying about the financial burden. A comprehensive health insurance policy like the one offered by Tata AIG includes a range of benefits including**
Comprehensive coverage Includes a range of diseases and illnesses. Also, includes various costs like hospitalisation, ambulance charges, diagnostic test charges, and various types of treatments
Cashless claims Allows you to get treated at a network hospital without having to pay upfront and claim later. Tata AIG directly settles your bills with the hospital within the sum insured limit and subject to the terms of the policy
No sub-limits Tata AIG does not implement any sub-limit on the coverage offered. Hence, you can use the coverage amount as per your needs
Lifetime renewability Renew your Tata AIG policy as many times as your want. Get continuous coverage
Add-ons Customize your health insurance plans using add-on covers like personal accident and critical illness cover.
Claim settlement With Tata AIG, your reimbursement claims are also settled n a fast and efficient manner
Cost-efficient plans The premiums are affordable and pack a lot of features and benefits, making them highly cost-efficient
Health Insurance Tax Benefits
As per the Income Tax Act, 1961, every individual and HUF paying the premium of a health insurance policy can avail of tax benefits under Section 80D of the Act. Hence, the premium amount can be deducted from the annual taxable income. However, the premium cannot be made in cash; it has to be paid online or via cheque/DD.
The maximum tax benefits is ₹25,000 for policyholders below 60 years of age and ₹50,000 for senior citizens. Individuals can claim dual benefits - first deduction towards policy bought for self (spouse and children included) and second deduction for a separate policy bought for dependent parents.
As a result, the maximum permissible deduction can be ₹1,00,000 (₹50,000 + ₹50,000). This limit subsumes the Preventive Health Checkup expenditure up to ₹5000 for under 60 years and ₹7000 for senior citizens.
HUFs enjoy the same tax benefits as above. NRIs can claim a maximum health in surance tax deduction of ₹25,000 (irrespective of age).
How to Buy Tata AIG’s Health Insurance?
Here is a quick look at the process to buy Tata AIG Health insurance:
Visit the official website of Tata AIG General Insurance
Go to the 'Health Insurance' section
If you want to buy an individual plan, then select “Self” on this page and click on “Get Plan”. If you want to include your family members, then select the members from the list provided and click on “Get Plan”.
Enter the date of birth of all members to be included in the policy
Click on “See Plan”
You will be able to see a list of insurance plans based on the information provided. Select the best plan for you and your family
Choose the add-on covers and sum insured based on your requirements
Click on “Buy Now”
We will call you to complete the buying process
Find and visit the nearest Tata AIG office
Meet with our representative and discuss your health insurance requirements
Fill out the necessary paperwork and provide any personal or medical information required to complete the application process
Choose the coverage amount, policy term, and any additional riders or add-ons that you may require
Review the policy details, premium amount, and coverage benefits
Pay the fees
Documents Needed to Buy Tata AIG’s Medical Insurance Plan
Here is a list of documents needed to buy Tata AIG’s medical insurance plan
Identity proof Any government-issued photo-identity card including your passport, driving license, PAN card, or Aadhaar card.
Address proof Any of these documents** Utility bill, passport, driving license, Aadhaar card, or rent agreement.
Age proof Any of these documents** Birth certificate, PAN card, or passport.
Medical history Details of your medical history.
What to Look for in a Health Insurance Plan?
If you are specifically looking for a health insurance plan that covers skin allergy treatment, here are some factors to consider**
Skin Allergy-related features** Make sure that the policy covers the costs for treatments related to skin problems. Also, depending on the symptoms and the location, the costs of allergy testing can be high. Hence, ensure that the policy covers these testing costs.
Coverage amount If you are living in a metropolitan or a mini-metro city, then the costs of medical care will be very high, especially if hospitalization is involved. Hence, make sure that the policy has an adequate sum insured.
Affordability The features that you need in a health insurance policy might come with a high premium amount. To make it affordable, look for a provider that offers co-payment and deductibles.
Network hospitals The insurer should have hospitals close to your home in its network.
The reputation of the insurance company** Read reviews about the insurance company and choose one that has strong reviews about customer service and claim settlement.
Things to Remember when Filing a Claim for Skin Allergy Insurance
With Tata AIG, you can either opt for a cashless claim settlement or file a reimbursement claim after you are discharged from the hospital.
In a cashless claim you don’t have to pay anything to the hospital. Once we approve your claim, we settle all bills directly within the terms of the policy.
Here are some things to remember for a cashless claim**
You need to call us about being hospitalized. You will also have to apply for authorization to opt for cashless treatment
The treatment will either be planned or sudden.
Planned treatment Call us at least five days before getting hospitalized to ensure a smooth approval process
Emergencies Call us within 24 hours of being hospitalized to avail of cashless treatment
If you don’t want to opt for cashless treatment or are getting treated at a non-network hospital, then you can opt for a reimbursement claim. You will have to pay for everything from your pocket. After you are discharged, you can file a claim with the required documents.
**Here are some things to remember for a reimbursement claim
Take a list of documents needed for the claim from the insurer
Make a folder with all the documents arranged as per the date. Collect diagnostic reports, doctor’s reports, imaging scans, and hospital and pharmacy bills
Once you are discharged, fill up a claim form, attach the documents, and submit it to the insurer
Here are some additional things that you need to keep in mind for a health insurance claim
If your policy is expiring soon, then make sure that you renew it before opting for the treatment
You should know the nature, scope, and extent of the coverage offered
Look for the waiting period and cooling period clauses
Other Health Pages
Disclaimer / TnC
Your policy is subjected to terms and conditions & inclusions and exclusions mentioned in your policy wording. Please go through the documents carefully.
Frequently Asked Question
1. Are all skin cancers fatal?
No. Most skin cancers are treatable if diagnosed early enough. The key is keeping your eyes open for symptoms and getting help early on.
2. Can a white spot on my skin be cancer?
Any aberrant spots or moles can be cancer. If you are noticing a white spot on your skin that was not there before or one that feels unusual, get it checked out immediately.
3. Who do I go to if I doubt I have skin cancer?
You must go to a dermatologist if you doubt you have skin cancer.
4. What kind of health insurance should I buy if I have a history of cancer in my family?
If you have a history of cancer in your family, you should invest in health insurance with cancer cover.
Q1. Can stress trigger skin allergies?
A weak immune system is more sensitive to allergens. When an individual is stressed, the immune system weakens further. This makes the individual more likely to have an allergic reaction.
Q2. Can skin allergies develop suddenly even if I have not had any previous allergies?
Allergic reactions are indications of a weak immune system. If your immune system weakens, then you can get an allergic reaction at any age.
Q3. Does health insurance cover the cost of diagnostic tests for skin allergies?
While most insurance policies cover the costs of diagnostic tests for skin allergies, we recommend that you talk to the insurer to get clarity.