Colorado Allergy & Asthma Centers® is proud to offer immunotherapy treatment options to our patients. Below you will find information about Allergy Shots and Allergy Drops (Sublingual Immunotherapy or SLIT). Both of these treatments work to gradually immunize you against your specific allergens, thus reducing the severity of your symptoms. Talk to your allergist to determine if either of these treatments are right for you.
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Commonly known as “allergy shots,” these are a series of injections designed to control your allergies; they are not a medication. Medicines treat the symptoms of allergies, while allergy shots treat the cause.
People who should consider getting injections include:
- Those with moderate to severe allergies, including those allergic to cats, dogs, and stinging insects (bees, wasps, etc.)
- Those with sinus problems or asthma due to allergies
- Those who don’t respond to allergy medications or would like to avoid long-term use of those medicines
- Those who are able to commit to a regularly scheduled treatment plan
What Are the Benefits?
- Patients treated with allergy shots are expected to have a marked decrease in allergy symptoms as well as a marked decrease in the use of allergy medications.
- Symptoms like fatigue, poor concentration, headaches, ear and sinus infections can also be improved.
- Children treated with allergy shots are less likely to develop asthma or new allergies.
- Asthma and sinusitis episodes will usually be decreased.
Allergy Drops – Sublingual Immunotherapy (SLIT)
This is a form of immunotherapy that involves putting drops of allergen extracts under the tongue. Many people refer to this process as “allergy drops,” and it is an alternative treatment for allergy injections. It is recommended for select children over 5 years of age, and select adults. Insurance will usually cover the cost of the office visits and allergy testing, but will not cover the cost of the drops.
Sublingual immunotherapy is not an FDA approved treatment. It is considered “off label” treatment.
What are the benefits?
- SLIT can be effective in children to reduce symptoms of allergic rhinitis and asthma, prevent development of new allergies, and reduce the likelihood of developing future asthma.
- SLIT can be safely administered at home.
- Injections are avoided.