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What are the Different Ways to Treat Allergies?

Manan Shah, MD, ENT

Wyndly co-founder & Chief Medical Officer. Dedicated to personalizing care and making allergies a thing of the past.

Updated on Sep 16, 2021

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This article is a transcript

 

If your allergies are ruining your life, it might be time to start thinking about allergy immunotherapy. That's a way of building up a tolerance in your body to the things that you're allergic to so you have a long-term relief.

 

So in general, there's three ways of treating allergies. The first way is trying to avoid what you're allergic to. And this works well, if you just have a cat or dog allergy; but it's hard if you have multiple allergies.

 

The second option is using medications. And in terms of medications, there are over-the-counter medications like Claritin, Zyrtec, and Allegra. And these can be bought and tried. And they're things like Flonase and NasonexThere are also prescription medications like Azelastine and Singulair that you should talk to your doctor about.

 

And then the third option, if you've tried and failed a lot of these over-the-counter medications, is allergy immunotherapy. And what that is you give your body small bouts of what you're allergic and over time you become tolerant and this provides long-lasting relief. 

 

So there are two types of that too. There's allergy shots, which is where you get an injection in the arm weekly for about three to five years. And over time that helps you build up a tolerance. This does have to be done at a doctor's office though, because there's a risk of a life-threatening reaction. The alternate option is allergy drops, which are taken under the tongue at home every day. These tend to be easier for some patients, but they do have different responses and allergy. In general, they're much safer and patients get long lasting relief.

 

Hope this helps. Thanks so much.

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