What Are Allergy Drops?
Allergy drops are a form of immunotherapy. They stimulate the patient’s immune system to develop antibodies to block the allergy reaction before it occurs. This form of therapy allows for the patient to have a significant reduction in allergy symptoms and require less allergy medicine. Unlike allergy shots they can be given safely at home, don’t require any needles, and are safer than allergy shot therapy.
Allergy drops are formulated based upon skin testing in our office. The skin testing we use has no needles. Instead it is a plastic multi-pressure device which is dipped in the typical allergens and placed on the patient’s back. The results are read within 15 minutes. Positive reactions are used to formulate the appropriate allergy drops.
Allergy drops vS Allergy shots
Many people are familiar with allergy shots. The mainstay of treatment of severe allergies for decades. This therapy can be very successful, but unfortunately it requires weekly visits to the doctor’s office as well as the need for injections. Research and clinical experience in Europe led to the development of allergy drop therapy. It was discovered that special cells that exist beneath the lining under the tongue can also stimulate the immune system to create these same allergy blocking antibodies. Instead of weekly visits and shots, the patient can safely use the allergy drops under the tongue once daily to relieve their allergy complaints. If you have held off allergies tested because the hassle and pain of shots were not for you, consider the use of allergy drop therapy as a nice alternative.
Benefits of allergy drops
This form of therapy will quickly reduce allergy symptoms such as runny nose, sneezing, congestion, postnasal drip, sinus inflammation and recurring infections.
Allergy Drop Candidacy
Anyone who has allergy symptoms and would like an alternative to all of the typical allergy medicines is a good candidate. It’s especially helpful in patients who are not getting enough relief from the usual allergy treatments. It is safe even in patients who normally can’t take allergy shots such as those on Beta Blockers.
There is no age requirement for allergy drops and they can be used in very young children. They taste sweet and are well tolerated. In our office the skin testing is done without needles so allergy testing can also be done at a very young age. If the child is too young to be tested we can also simply formulate the drops based upon what the parents notice causes symptoms.
Local Allergic Rhinitis Treatment
Allergy drop therapy can even be used if you have been told you “don’t have allergies” by an allergist based upon skin testing. It isn’t necessarily true that a patient does not have allergy if the skin testing is negative. If the patient has typical allergy symptoms with negative skin testing the patient has LAR (local allergic rhinitis). LAR means that the patient does have allergy but it is isolated to the nasal and sinus membranes and is not systemic (negative blood or skin testing). In cases of LAR we formulate the allergy drops based upon the patient’s history. What types of exposures, times of year, cause the symptoms. Typical offending trees, weeds, grasses, dangers, molds, dust mite, are included to treat these patients successfully.
If your allergy test was negative but you know you have allergies, you should watch this video and learn about Local Allergic Rhinitis.
how are allergy drops used?
The drops are given once a day under the tongue and are held for 2 minutes then swallowed.
How quickly can allergy drops relieve symptoms?
Drops get to maintenance dose in less than two weeks and patients may feel improved in just 2 weeks. Most patients will have very nice symptomatic relief by 6 months. A 36 month course of allergy drops is usually all that is needed. The patient’s body has learned it’s lesson after 3 years and keeps making the antibodies to block the allergy even if the drops are discontinued.
How can I optimize my allergy treatment results?
Traditional allergy therapies such as nasal steroid sprays, antihistamines, etc can be used along with allergy drop therapy. Typically by 3-6 months in to allergy drop therapy our patients will find that they don’t need allergy medications anymore.
Side Effects Of Allergy Drops
Drop therapy is not a medication. It is naturally occurring allergens and has very few side effects. Some patients may experience a tingling or slight swelling under the tongue. There may be a brief worsening of allergy complaints in the first few weeks as the body starts to make the antibodies.
Schedule a consultation
If you are interested in learning more about allergy drops, contact our office today! Call (512) 601-0303 or request a consultation online to schedule a consultation with board certified ENT specialist Dr. Daniel Slaughter.