There are several ways we can deal with allergy:
We can try our best to avoid the offending allergen, however, most times, it is just not feasible to avoid certain allergens especially inhalant allergens. Avoidance alone is usually inefficient.
2) Anti-allergic drugs
Medications like oral antihistamines, oral decongestants, nasal sprays and corticosteroids can help ease or reduce symptoms caused by allergy as long as the symptoms are not serious or life-threatening. However, they do not treat the allergy condition.
This means symptoms typically appear again when you stop taking the drugs
For example, dust mites allergy is very common in those with allergic rhinitis. It is almost impossible to avoid dust mites completely, hence, patients will usually have to be on long term medications for symptom control.
3) Sublingual immunotherapy ( SLIT)
Immunotherapy is the only treatment that is capable of treating the root cause of the allergy.
This therapy works by desensitizing and downregulating the body’s reaction towards a specific allergen that is responsible for producing symptoms. Hence, gradually modifying the body’s allergic responses over time.
This is accomplished by intentional regular exposure of the specific allergens administered via under the tongue ( sublingual spray).
Sublingual immunotherapy significantly improves quality of life, reduces consumption of medications, and also reduces the risk of developing asthma and new allergies in the future.
Clinical papers show success rates of SLIT up to 80%, especially for inhaled allergens.
Improvement of symptoms can be seen as early as 2-3 months from the start of the therapy. It is recommended duration of treatment is 3-5 years, hence, a firm commitment from the patient is necessary to help determine the success of treatment. Persistent effects from immunotherapy have been documented to last up to 10 years.
Symptoms can relapse if treatment is stopped prematurely.
How to use Sublingual immunotherapy (SLIT)?
2 sprays under the tongue daily are all that is needed. Generally, we advise patients to avoid eating or drinking in the first 15 minutes after the spray to allow maximum efficacy of the treatment on the administered area. It has a pleasant pineapple taste
How Safe is SLIT?
Sublingual immunotherapy is safe for children as young as 2 years old. Only about 1% of patients report temporary mild itching/ tingling under the tongue which resolves within 1 week.
SLIT is strongly recommended in the World Allergy Organization (WAO) clinical studies.
If you are keen to find out more about Allergy Treatment or Sublingual immunotherapy (SLIT), please call +65 6962 7144, or visit our Holland V Branch to find out more.