If you suffer from allergies and you are tired of having to take daily medication to get rid of the symptoms, then you might be interested in learning about immunotherapy, or more commonly known as allergy shots.
The way allergy shots work to help you control and even “cure” your allergies is by building up your immunity and reducing your sensitivity to whatever it is you are allergic to. Each allergy shot is crafted specifically for your particular allergies and it contains a small amount of allergens (the substances that trigger your allergies). With every allergy shot your body will be slowly introduced to amounts of allergens small enough that they will not cause an allergic reaction. The amount of allergens in every shot will be progressively increased, allowing your body to get used to being exposed to those allergens. This will ultimately allow you to come in contact with that dreaded pollen without sneezing your day away!
Studies have shown that when performed properly the success rate of immunotherapy is 85%. Immunotherapy treatment is considered successful when you are able to come into contact with allergens and experience minimal to no allergy symptoms.
Other goals of immunotherapy are to reduce or completely eliminate your need for allergy medications, as well as to eventually eliminate your need to continue with the allergy shots. However, depending on the severity of your allergies, some people may be required to continue “maintenance allergy shots” every other week or so to keep the effects of immunotherapy going.
Once you start the immunotherapy treatment you will usually be required to get the allergy shots once or twice a week. After about 3 to 6 months you should begin to feel the effects of the shots. The length of the treatment depends on each individual, but the average is between 1 and 2 years.
Home immunotherapy is a good option for people who do not want to visit their doctor’s office once or twice every week. With home immunotherapy, you will go through an educational program where you will be taught to give yourself the allergy shots. You will also be instructed on safety and handling emergencies. Once you are fully trained and comfortable, you will be able to continue your immunotherapy treatment in the comfort of your own home.
Visit our blog next week for a look at Sublingual Immunotherapy as another option to take control of your allergies and breathe freely! Meanwhile, to learn more about how allergy shots can help you, make an appointment with Dr. Pasha today!