There are three different types of allergy treatments: environmental elimination, suppression with medication and allergy shots.
Environmental elimination is the best method of treatment. This may involve decreasing the level of allergens in your home or work environment, if possible. Sometimes certain types of food are to be avoided. However, sometimes this can be difficult if you are allergic to allergens that are widespread such as grass or trees. Saline washes of the nose can help remove inhaled allergens.
Suppression with medication is probably the most commonly used method for treating allergies. This involves the use of antihistamines (we generally use presciption anti-histamines that are non-sedating so they do not interfere with your daily work or play), topical nasal steriod sprays or occasionally, systemic steroid pills. Newer medication that prevents the allergic response are coming available and promise to improve our scope of allergy medications.
An allergy shot treatment program is 1-2 year commitment on the part of the patient to take shots about once a week in an effort to eliminate the bodies overreaction to allergens. Allergy shots help relieve allergy symptoms by helping your body fight the allergen. When you get shots of the allergen, your body starts making antibodies to the allergen.
These antibodies help block the effects of the allergen the next time you have contact with it. Because the antibodies block the way your body reacts to the allergen, your allergy symptoms become less severe. After many allergy shots, you might start to get relief from your allergy symptoms.
This relief will last for a long time. It usually takes 6 months or more of shots before you start feeling better and notice relief of your allergy symptoms.
Allergy are a complex problem which unfortunately affects a large number of people. You are welcome to make an appointment with Dr. Sinha at 404/257-1589 to discuss you symptoms to determine if allergy testing and treatment are appropriate for you.