The best Allergy Treatment is always avoidance – stay away from the allergen that triggers the reaction. Of course in the real world and depending on the allergen – that is simply not possible. The next best thing is to try to minimize the symptoms when the trigger cannot be avoided.
Allergy Treatment – Medication
While Medication is not a cure for your allergy it can treat the symptoms such as a runny nose, sneezing and itchy watery eyes. Many of these treatments can be bought at the drug store but stronger versions can also be prescribed by your doctor. Always check with your doctor even if you only plan to take the over the counter versions.
- Antihistamines drugs block the action of the chemical histamine, which is the chemical that the body releases when it is fighting an allergen. They are available in liquid, tablet or cream form, and as nasal sprays or eye drops. Nasal sprays can reduce swelling and irritation in your nose, and eye drops will help to ease itchy, sore eyes. Some of these allergy treatment sprays and drops are for adults only. Always check with your doctor or pharmacist before buying for your children as well as yourself.
- Decongestants can help to relieve the stuffy nose which is often caused by allergic rhinitis (due to hay fever, a dust allergy or a pet allergy). These allergy treatment drugs are available as capsules, tablets, nasal sprays or liquids.
- Leukotriene Receptor Antagonists (LTRAs) are drugs that block the effects of leukotrienes, the chemicals released into the bloodstream during an allergic attack that cause the airways to swell. LTRAs are often used for treating asthma when other treatments have not worked.
Allergy Treatment – Hyposensitisation (Immunotherapy)
Another allergy treatment is Hyposensitisation (or Immunotherapy). The known allergens are injected under the skin of your upper arm. Initially you will be given injections at weekly intervals. Doses of the allergen are gradually increased each time until you reach the “maintenance dose”. This is the dose that is sufficient to reduce your usual allergic reaction. Then you will need to have injections at this dosage every few weeks for at least two years.
Hyposensitisation is usually only used to treat severe allergies that have not responded to prior treatments. It is also used to treat specific allergies such as wasp and bee stings.
It is important that this allergy treatment only be carried out under the supervision of a doctor because there may be a serious allergic reaction during treatment.
Allergy Treatment – Anaphylaxis
Anaphylactic shock is the most severe type of allergic reaction and requires immediate emergency treatment with an injection of adrenaline.
If you have a severe allergy that could cause anaphylaxis or have had a severe attack in the past, your allergist will prescribe an auto-injection kit of adrenaline. This is an easy-to-use syringe that you always have with you.
It is probably also a good idea to wear a medical information bracelet to inform people of your condition in case of emergency so they know to give appropriate allergy treatment.
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