It’s a common misconception that dust can trigger allergies, when it’s actually the microscopic bugs that feed on it known as dust mites. These tiny bugs belong to the same family as ticks and spiders, and they can live in most climates and at most altitudes. They thrive most in warm environments around 70°F and 70% humidity. Whether you like it or not, dust mites are all around you, no matter how clean your home is.
How Do Dust Mites Trigger Allergy Symptoms?
Your immune system works to protect your body from diseases, viruses and infections. But for people with allergies, their immune system mistakes harmless substances such as the proteins in the waste and decaying bodies of dust mites as a dangerous intruder. An allergic reaction occurs when your body is exposed to a one of these triggering substances, known as an allergen, and your immune system overreacts.
In order to fight off the intruder, the immune system releases antibodies called Immunoglobulin E (IgE), which causes your cells to release histamine. Histamine can increase your mucus production and cause swelling and itching.
Treating Dust Mite Allergies
While the first line of defense against dust mite allergies is to minimize the number of allergens in the environment, some people need more to manage symptoms. This is where allergy tablets – a form of immunotherapy – come in.
Sublingual immunotherapy (SLIT) is an option for treating certain allergies that was approved by the FDA in 2017. Like vaccines and allergy shots, SLIT works by exposing your body to small, safe dosages of the allergens in order for your immune system to build up a tolerance.
SLIT is available in both a drop and tablet form that is placed under the tongue each day until dissolved. For dust mite allergies, the tablet is taken year-round, usually for three to five years or until you no longer experience symptoms.
SLIT Is Safe & Effective
An international study published last year found that patients who received SLIT treatment for one year had fewer eye and nose-related allergy symptoms compared to those who took a placebo. None of the participants experienced an anaphylactic reaction. Across multiple studies, this type of reaction is extremely rare.
If you’re tired of experiencing allergy symptoms when cleaning your home or when visiting Antiques & Beyond, allergy tablets may be right for you. For more information or to schedule an appointment, call ENT of Georgia today.