Under-the-Tongue Allergy Drops: An Alternative to Allergy Shots
Let’s face it. People with allergies may get used to receiving shots (needle injections). They may tolerate it – although some can’t or won’t. But nobody really LIKES it.
For people who suffer from many kinds of allergies, the regimen of regular allergy shots has been the traditional (and often only) treatment for over 100 years. Even today, it’s considered the “go-to” treatment for chronic allergies. But it’s important for people to know that shots are NOT always the only option for everyone with allergies.
Allergy Drops Can be an Excellent Alternative to Shots for Many Allergy Sufferers
Many people with allergies are unfamiliar with allergy drops. Maybe they’ve heard about it but don’t know much about this form of allergy immunotherapy or they have not tried drops or don’t know anyone who has. The good news is that allergy drops can be a great option for many allergy sufferers as an alternative to shots.
How Allergy Immunotherapy Works
Allergy immunotherapy works like a vaccine. Our bodies gradually build tolerance to the sources that trigger our allergies by introducing small amounts of those allergen(s) through injections (shots) or drops, in gradually increasing doses over time. That increased tolerance allows our bodies to gradually become desensitized and that gives symptomatic relief over time for allergy sufferers.
Allergy Drops (Sublingual Immunotherapy or “SLIT”)
Unlike over-the-counter allergy medications that simply mask symptoms, allergy drops are a breakthrough advance in treatment of allergies. Instead of targeting the symptoms, the drops address the underlying allergy issues, giving short-term reduction of symptoms AND long-term allergy relief.
Because allergy drops enter the bloodstream slower, they have a lower risk compared to allergy shots of inducing adverse reactions. With allergy shots, you are monitored for 20-30 minutes after each injection to safeguard against a possible reaction. Allergy drops are safe enough to use at home without monitoring by a medical professional.
Also, allergy drops don’t hurt! That makes them particularly beneficial for children as well as needle-averse adults.
Shots vs Drops
Under the tongue
Time required: travel time to and from doctor’s office + appointment time + 20-30 minute wait after injection to monitor for adverse reactions
At home (self administered or given by parents to younger children)
Time required: less than a minute
Some pain associated with injection
(pain intensity, tolerance varies by individual)
Minor: possible very mild redness/swelling at
Systemic: rare but more serious reaction known as anaphylaxis – requires immediate treatment with appropriate medication
Minor: possible mild itching or tingling of mouth or tongue
Systemic: extremely rare
1-2 x per week for first 3-6 months
1-2 x per month thereafter
1 x daily over a period of 3-5 years
Covered by most health insurance plans
(copays and deductibles apply)
Financial AdvantagesWhile most health insurance plans do not currently cover allergy drops, there are a number of cost benefits to allergy drops. – No gas or transportation costs to and from doctors’ office appointments – Time is money: increased time savings, improved productivity, less time away from work compared to regular office visits for allergy shots – Reduced expense from over-the-counter medications or other treatments – Cost can be funded from tax-exempt health savings accounts
Sublingual Allergy Drops Available in Coos Bay
from Oregon Coast Allergy & Sinus
At Oregon Coast Allergy & Sinus, the Coos Bay office of highly-credentialed and experienced ear, nose and throat specialist W. Wallace Webster, MD, allergy testing and treatment – including allergy drops – is available to allergy sufferers who live or work anywhere along the southern Oregon coast as well as inland communities.
Call 541-808-3860 today to schedule your allergy consultation and exam with Dr. Webster and find out more about how allergy drops may be your path to freedom from allergies and a more enjoyable life!