You’ve seen the TV, web and print ads, and you’re pretty sure you know about every allergy treatment on the market. But do you know about allergy immunotherapy, and that one form of allergy immunotherapy — allergy shots — has been available and effective for more than 100 years?
Immunotherapy, administered via shots or under-the-tongue (sublingual) tablets, can make a huge difference for allergy sufferers. These methods work by changing your immune system — decreasing some cells, chemicals and antibodies in your system that cause allergy symptoms, and increasing others that improve health.
Allergy shots and immunotherapy tablets let you encounter allergens without having a reaction. That’s an encouraging option for people who suffer from allergy and asthma symptoms and want relief.
Options are available
Allergy shots can be used to treat all grass, tree and weed pollens; mold spores; cat and dog dander; and house dust mites. If you are allergic to more than one of these things, your allergist will formulate a shot targeted to treat your specific allergens. Treatment with allergy shots usually lasts three to five years.
Sublingual immunotherapy tablets treat one allergen at a time and are available for grass and ragweed pollens, and dust mites. To effectively guard against allergy symptoms, you must start taking tablets at least three months before allergy season begins. Talk with your allergist to see if this might be a good option for you.
If you think you are one of the more than 50 million Americans suffering from allergies, you can find a board-certified allergist in your area with the allergist locator tool at AllergyandAsthmaRelief.org. Allergists are trained to diagnose and treat allergy symptoms, and to work with you to create an individual action plan so you can live the life you want.
SOURCE: American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, [email protected]