If you are suffering from allergies, you may have heard of allergy shots. In this blog post, we will discuss what exactly allergy shots are and how they can treat allergies. We’ll explore why they work, their benefits, potential risks associated with them, as well as some alternatives to allergy shots!
Allergy shots, also known as allergen immunotherapy, are injections of purified allergens that help desensitize the body to certain triggers and help reduce the severity of daily rhinitis symptoms like sneezing, itching, and nasal congestion. They do this by gradually introducing more and more of a particular allergen into the body, allowing it to build up immunity to that trigger over time. Allergy shots can treat a variety of allergies including sensitivity to trees, grass, weeds, cat, dog, dust mites, and molds and can be a great option for those who have experienced little relief from nasal sprays, antihistamines and avoidance measures.
Allergy shots are administered by board-certified allergists in an office setting with a standard observation period post-injection. These shots are not given at home. The injections gradually increase in strength over time, allowing your body to develop immunity to the particular allergen(s) being treated. However, allergy shots may cause a variety of side effects, including redness or itching at the injection site. On rare occasions, allergy shots can lead to a more systemic reaction that might include wheezing, hives, swelling in the throat and mouth, difficulty breathing or swallowing, dizziness, nausea, and vomiting. The good news is that systemic reactions are rare, and allergy shots are generally considered safe when administered properly.
Though they may take several weeks or months to take effect, allergy shots can be a great option for treating allergies. If you’re considering allergy shots, make sure to speak with your doctor about the risks and benefits of this type of treatment. With proper care and guidance, you can reduce your reliance on daily medications and find relief from your symptoms leading to a better quality of life and improved overall health.
If allergy shots are not your thing there are other options to consider. One such option is sublingual immunotherapy, also called SLIT. This is an alternative way to treat allergies without injections. Currently, the only forms of SLIT approved by the FDA are tablets for grass, ragweed, and dust mites. The tablets will increase your tolerance to the allergen and reduce your symptoms over time. Allergy drops, on the other hand, are not FDA-approved and are off-label in the U.S. at this time.
So, if you’re one of the millions struggling with allergies, understand that you’re not alone. Also, know that there are treatments available that can help you get your life back. Allergy shots and sublingual tablets are just a few examples of effective immunotherapy treatments that have helped many people find relief from their symptoms. If you think these treatments may be right for you, please contact us today. At Bernstein Allergy Group, we offer high-quality medical care for all family members suffering from allergies.