Since they can be administered at home, allergy drops, also known as SLIT, avoid taking time from work or school for weekly office visits to your Texas allergist that are required for allergy shots.
Cost of allergy drops is similar to co-pays for the typical medications or shots of most patients, but only lasts five years, while the cost of others could be indefinite. Each patient is on a case to case basis, their medical history, reactions and insurance coverage.
Allergy shots can be administered in patients as young as two years old all the way to senior citizens. Allergy drops are easier for our Texas patients and produce fewer undesirable reactions than allergy shots. Most patients miss fewer doses, as well, which is beneficial to the progress of the treatment. A superior safety profile also accompanies Sublingual Immunotherapy. Anaphylaxis incidents are much less likely to happen, occurring only three times per million. Texan allergy has had no reports of severe reactions to allergy drops using our protocol. SLIT is all-natural – unlike medications – and is made from simple extracts of molds, pet dander, pollens and dust.
In the most recent meta-analysis, executed by the distinguished Cochrane Review (2009), more than 2300 patients on sublingual immunotherapy were found to have a significant reduction in symptom scores and medication use for both allergies and asthma without severe reactions or anaphylaxis. Allergy drops are endorsed by the World Health Organization and the ARIA (Allergic Rhinitis and it Impact on Asthma) guideline. SLIT stops allergic reactions instead of just hiding the symptoms, which is all some medications do. This treatment is effective at treating allergies because the patient uses it daily and it typically has a quicker onset of action (within four weeks). Allergy drops produce fewer unfavorable reactions than shots.
The design behind every kind of immunotherapy, which includes allergy drops and allergy shots, is to expose the body to a manageable portion of allergy-causing substances. Over a period of several months there will be an increase in those concentrations and the symptoms will dissipate.
Some side effects and adverse reactions are associated with allergy drops. They are usually very mild and treatment is rarely required. At least 135,000 patients over the past 40 years using our protocol have had no severe reactions.
Most commonly, patients report of tingling or itching in the mouth or mild swelling under the tongue. This commonly occurs during the first several days of treatment (in up to 40% of patients). We recommend treating with an antihistamine and taking the same dosage of drops until the reaction no longer occurs.
Some other adverse reactions, though uncommon, may include wheezing, nausea and stomach ache in patients who suffer from asthma. Anaphylaxis, and other severe allergic reactions, are extremely rare and much less common than with allergy shots. Because of this, allergy drops are safe to administer at home.
Any patients with asthma or anyone taking beta blockers can also safely use allergy drops. As always, asthmatics should take their medications to keep their asthma under control, but the chance of significant asthma exacerbation is much less when using allergy drops as treatment than with using allergy shots.
Patients that currently take shots are able to switch to drops (and vice versa). Prior to switching, we will need to repeat the allergy testing process. If you are interested in allergy drops, or want to learn more, give us a call or send us an email to schedule a visit with our Texas allergist or ask questions about pricing or other information.