Treatment for allergy generally comes in three categories:
- Avoidance or Environmental Control
Many patients require a combination of these three treatment methods to achieve optimal control of their symptoms.
If you can avoid the things you are allergic to, then you can minimize your symptoms. Modifications in your home to decrease dust mites, animal dander, or mold can all be effective. For many allergy sufferers, however, it is very difficult to control the environment, especially when you are outside of your own home.
Allergy medications won’t cure your nasal allergies. They will, however, relieve and sometimes prevent allergy symptoms. There are a variety of options ranging from over the counter to prescription medications and nasal sprays. For many people with nasal allergies, the combination of avoiding allergens and taking allergy medication is enough to control allergy symptoms.
Immunotherapy is the only method that treats the underlying allergic disease. It is an excellent form of treatment for those who have tried medications or environmental control and are not getting the relief that they would like. It requires frequent, regular exposure to very small amounts of allergen(s) over the course of several years. Immunotherapy comes in two forms: subcutaneous, also called SCIT or ‘allergy shots’, and sublingual also known as SLIT or ‘allergy drops’.
Injection immunotherapy is an effective treatment, yet many allergy sufferers are not willing or able to consider this treatment. Sublingual immunotherapy, or allergy drops, is an off-label use of the same antigens used in allergy shots. Due to the better safety profile of allergy drops, more allergic individuals can benefit from a treatment approach that addresses the cause of the allergies.
There are many benefits to consider with allergy drop treatment including reduced time spent for physician visits, the convenience of taking immunotherapy at home or on the go, the ability to treat a broader array of allergic patients and conditions, and the reduced need for allergy medications.
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