If you experience itchy eyes, congestion, runny nose and sneezing after visiting The Atlanta Botanical Garden, you may be looking for a long-term solution. Allergy drops, also known as sublingual immunotherapy, might be the answer. If you have questions about this allergy treatment option, we review information you need to know below.
What Are Allergy Drops?
You may have heard of allergy shots; allergy drops are an alternative option that doesn’t involve needles or frequent visits to the allergy clinic. Rather than getting injections, allergy drops are delivered via drop or tablet form that is held under the tongue until dissolved. Allergy drops are a safe and effective option for treating allergic rhinitis.
How Do Allergy Drops Work?
Allergy drops are a form of allergen immunotherapy. Allergen immunotherapy entails repeatedly exposing yourself to small doses of allergen extracts in order to help your immune system build up a tolerance to them. The goal of allergen immunotherapy is to eliminate or significantly reduce your symptoms.
Rather than addressing the symptoms of allergies like antihistamines do, allergy drops and other forms of allergen immunotherapy address the root cause.
What Types of Allergies Do Allergy Drops Address?
The FDA has approved allergy drops (all in tablet form) to treat allergies to:
- Timothy grass.
- Dust mites.
- A combination of five grass species.
Some allergist prescribe allergy drops off-label to treat other types of allergies, as well.
How Are Allergy Drops Administered?
First, you must undergo an allergy test to determine exactly what you’re allergic to and how allergic you are. Then the drops are prepared.
Your first dose of allergy drops is administered in your allergist’s office. First, the tablet is placed under the tongue until dissolved. You should avoid swallowing for at least a minute and avoid eating or drinking anything for at least five minutes. You’ll be monitored for 30 minutes in case you have an unlikely severe reaction.
Assuming your first dose is well-tolerated, you can take the rest of your allergy drops at home. Most are taken every three to seven days for three years, though the dose depends on what your allergist prescribes. Some drops are taken seasonally while others are taken year-round.
For more information about allergy drops or to schedule an appointment, call ENT of Georgia North today.