Tired of the sniffles, sneezes, itchy eyes, and quality-of-life issues brought on by your allergies, and you’ve decided you want to slowly wean yourself off medications? Allergy immunotherapy could be your best bet.
Allergy immunotherapy is a treatment modality whose goal is to retrain your immune system to build tolerance to a certain allergen by introducing gradually increasing doses of it. Over time, as your immune system gets used to the allergen, you will notice a significant improvement in your symptoms. When properly administered and religiously adhered to, allergy immunotherapy can effectively help prevent or stop allergy attacks and reduce your reliance on medications.
Who Is a Candidate for Immunotherapy?
Despite the benefits of allergy immunotherapy, it isn’t suitable for everyone. It may not be recommended for you if you are taking beta blockers or similar medications, or if you have heart disease or severe asthma. Moreover, it may not be effective for food, latex, or drug allergies.
You may be a good candidate for allergy immunotherapy if you have any of the following types of allergies:
- Environmental allergies (e.g., mold spores, dust mites, pollen, etc.)
- Pet allergy
- Insect sting allergy
The Two Phases of Allergy Immunotherapy
Your doctor will perform a thorough evaluation to both determine your eligibility for allergy immunotherapy and to identify the substance that you develop a reaction to. Once they’ve ascertained that you’re a good candidate for it, your doctor will then decide the route of administration (i.e., allergy shots or sublingual drops) and proceed with the treatment plan, which is divided into two phases:
The buildup phase is the initial phase, and it typically takes three to six months. During this phase, your doctor will administer the dose once to thrice a week, gradually increasing it with each shot (if you’re receiving the treatment by injections).
Once you’ve reached your optimal therapeutic dose, your doctor will then begin the maintenance phase. During this phase, your doctor will taper the frequency of your shots: from once to thrice a week, you will only get them every three to four weeks. The maintenance phase typically lasts up to five years, or longer if deemed necessary by your doctor.
Immunotherapy in Garfield, NJ
At My Doc Urgent Care, allergy immunotherapy belongs to the vast array of ancillary services we offer— as part of our commitment to providing the men, women, and children in our community with comprehensive healthcare services.
To learn more about immunotherapy or our other services, call us at (862) 295-3501. To find out whether immunotherapy is right for you, simply walk in to our facility during our regular business hours for an evaluation, and we’ll do our best to attend to you right away. We look forward to helping you live well with—or even break free from—your allergy symptoms!