Allergy shots for asthma may sound like a drastic way to treat breathing problems, especially if you hate needles. But that all depends on how well traditional inhalers are working for you.
If you cannot get your breath, a little poke is nothing compared to the panic and suffering that an asthma attack can cause.
Allergy shots for asthma are a new way to prevent symptoms and they might work for you.
Over time your immune system is supposed to handle exposure to this allergen better and decrease symptoms.
What You Should Know:
Shots to treat allergies act just like vaccines for measles and mumps.
Allergy shots, also called immunotherapy, are given to decrease the troublesome symptoms that keep you sneezing and coughing at night. A small amount of the offending substance which triggers your asthma is injected into the body.
Eventually, allergy shots for asthma will increase your tolerance to the allergens that cause your symptoms.
Success rates with this form of treatment appear to be high.
Eventually, you may no longer need your allergy medicine. You should have fewer or milder allergy symptoms. Several scientific studies have shown that the allergy shots for asthma do work when it comes to relieving symptoms.
Typically people turn to allergy shots for asthma after they have tried other treatments that have not provided relief. For some people, this tool provides relief. It can help build immunity to many common allergens.
They usually are recommended for people who suffer from severe allergies. Allergy shots work best for those who suffer from pollen allergies, drug allergies, and asthma symptoms, but not for food allergies.
Your doctor will determine if you are eligible to receive this treatment and explain the details.
You may have noticed that during allergy season your eyes itch and your nose run more often. You may wonder if it is allergies or just another cold. The difference is that allergies last a lot longer than a cold and you shouldn’t get green mucus with a cold. But you will have to get tested by an allergist to be sure.
Just like the cold, there is no cure for allergies. But allergy shots for asthma can make you feel better during fall and spring, which are the worst time for asthma sufferers.
With allergy shots for asthma, there are pros and cons and don’t forget side effects. It is in your best interest to discuss this with your doctor to see if it is right for you.
Based on your condition and what you are allergic to, your doctor may prescribe this treatment.
After your doctor has confirmed that you have allergies, you should work with your doctor to better handle your symptoms. Together, you can develop the best allergy management plan for you.
The ultimate goal of allergy shots for asthma is to boost your immune system so that you have little to no symptoms. It is not the ultimate cure for asthma but it is an acceptable alternative.
Allergy shots for asthma are a controversial form of treatment that works for many asthmatics. With time and patience, you can build up a tolerance to allergens and prevent attacks before they occur. Moreover, some people say that a shot is better than regular doses of steriods.
If you have asthma, then you might think about allergy shots as a possible solution. Some doctors recommend it for asthma, especially in severe cases, because of its success rate.
Scientific research has proven that they can decreaseasthma symptoms and prevent future breathing problems.
For some asthma sufferers, this means a whole new way of life.
An attack is a very scary event no matter how much experience a person has with asthma. It comes on with wicked speed and can cause a period of anxiety. While these injections are not considered to be the cure for asthma, they can reduce sensitivity to certain substances that causes it.
But not everyone is eligible for this type of therapy. For one thing, if conventional inhalers are working for you, continuing with these may be deemed the better option.
This is especially true if you treat allergies with antihistamines and other medications successfully. And it works better for people who have more extreme cases of asthma.
Other concerns for anyone with allergies have to do with medical conditions. Depending on the condition, these injections may not be thought safe. Deciding eligibility can have to do with fears regarding a reaction to the vaccine or interference with medications.
If you are pregnant or taking beta-blockers as medication then you may not be a good candidate.
Your doctor would let you know if the treatment is suitable for you. Young children, under the age of 5, should not try this form of treatment. The risk is too great. But when they are older, allergy shots can prevent the development of new allergies.
It is very important to tell your doctor or allergist about all the medications you are taking while undergoing allergy shots for asthma. This includes all medically prescribed and all over-the-counter medications.
Chemicals have a funny way of affecting how your body works.
If you take in the wrong drug, you may delay or interfere with the progress of these injections. And this could increase the time of the treatments. Or worse yet, it may not work at all or make you ill.
Therefore it is always best to keep your doctor informed of your medical history before taking allergy shots for asthma.
Side effects or bad reactions sometimes occur with allergy shots. A bad reaction is a possibility with this type of treatment.
You may notice redness, swelling or irritation at the site of the injection.
These normal reactions are only irritating and will stop after four to eight hours. So you don't need to worry.
But the most dangerous reactions are throat swelling, wheezing, or chest tightness.
They should be closely monitored. Your doctor should be available to treat you during and after treatment in case there is a bad reaction.
Allergy shots for asthma can be a life-saver when it comes to breathing problems.
Although they are not considered the ultimate cure for asthma, this type of treatment can help to make it more manageable. While it may not be for everyone, allergy shots for asthma does provide hope for those who suffer through the difficult seasons.
Allergy shots can be a scary thing, especially if you don’t like needles. If you have tried everything for your asthma symptoms and nothing works
… this may be it.
But if you know what to expect with allergy shots, you can breathe a sigh of relief. With patience, you can decrease your wheezing and shortness of breath. It just takes some time and a boost to your immunity system.
Your asthma doctor will need to narrow down exactly what is triggering your wheezing and shortness of breath. For some, this could be pollen, dust, or mites. For others, it will be pet dander. With the wide range of possibilities, you will have to be tested to determine what is causing your pain.
Allergy testing may require pin pricks tainted with allergens, just under the skin, or a blood test.
During a skin test, a small amount of the allergen is placed under skin and then it is then watched for a reaction. If there is a reaction, then you are positive for allergies. A blood test is more reliable but it does involve a bigger needle.
An allergy shot contains a very small amount of the allergens that are making you sick. Once your doctor finds your specific allergens, treatment will begin. They are what your body will tackle in tiny amounts on a weekly basis. This may last for months or years. Each person is different.
Allergy shots for asthma are given regularly over time with increasing dosage.
After 5 to 6 months of therapy, you will start a maintenance treatment while your immunity builds up. Maintenance shots are less frequent and usually are given on a monthly basis.
After a certain amount of time, your body will become less sensitive to allergens and you will have fewer symptoms.
What you want to see is a reduction in wheeze and mucus production.
You should be able to take a deep breath without trouble or dizziness. Exercise should not strain your breathing as a result of asthma, though being out of shape still might.
After each treatment, you will be monitored for about 30 minutes to make sure that you don't have a bad reaction. If your symptoms don't improve after several months, your doctor will change the dosage or stop treatment completely.
A bad reaction to the allergy shot is a possibility with this type of treatment. So you should be aware of what to look for. You may notice redness, swelling, or irritation at the site of the injection.
These normal reactions are only irritating and will stop after four to eight hours. Reactions that should be closely monitored include nasal congestion and hives. More serious reactions are throat swelling, wheezing or chest tightness.
After receiving an injection, the worst case scenario is anaphylaxis. This may include shortness of breath or a tight throat and require emergency care. The best thing to do is to call your doctor and go to the nearest emergency room. Post-care treatment will be given there.
Over time as you continue with treatments, you will see some improvement in your asthma symptoms. Allergy shots are slow yet effective.
If you take the time to go through the process, it can be a rewarding experience.
Generally, allergy shots are considered safe by health professionals. They have a high success rate for asthma sufferers and medical research has shown few problems with the treatments.
If you are thinking about this treatment option, discuss it with your doctor to see if it is right for you. He or she will give you the facts so that you can make an educated decision.
Asthma cannot be cured but it is manageable with the right treatment plan.
This treatment plan involves multiple injections of a very small amount of allergens such as pollen over time.
Eventually these treatments de-sensitive the immune system to these foreign substances so that they no longer cause asthma attacks. They work similar to vaccines.
Due to the increased risk of an adverse reaction, they should not be started if you suffer from severe asthma that is not controlled with medicine, are pregnant, or have heart problems.
There are certain medications, such as beta-blockers, that are incompatible with this type of treatment.
As with vaccines, there are risks. The biggest risk come from the possibility of experiencing an allergic reaction.
A person may actually react to the allergen as if he or she was exposed to it. And this may lead to a real asthma attack.
For this reason, any person undergoing treatment generally hang around after their shots for a short time. This would ensure medical help is close by if needed.
For your safety, you will stay in the office for 30 minutes after getting the therapy. The medical staff will monitor for possible reactions or a life-threatening condition known as anaphylaxis.
Don’t worry if you have a fear of needles.
The needles used to give the therapy are very small and thin. They do not go in deep and are given in the less sensitive part of the arm. They are sterile and have little to no chance of infection.
For the duration of the allergy shots or asthma, you will receive treatments in the doctor’s office. With time, most people get use to the weekly regime. They find that it is worth the small amount of pain to get rid of asthma symptoms.
You may need to be patient. Little by little your immune system is learning to cope with its attackers, and this can take many months. Your immune system needs time to adjust to the allergens. Watch for small signs such as less wheezing and better lung capacity.
Even if the desired symptom-free result has not yet been achieved, you can self-monitor the treatments to determine if allergy shots are right for you. Since the allergy shots will be over a long period of time, you may want to keep a journal to monitor your progress.
As with any treatment, you will want to know if it is working for you.
If you have a peak flow meter to blow into, use this at regular intervals to measure how effective the allergy shots are working.
Do this over a reasonable length of time so that the difference shows. It usually takes six months to a year of shots before you notice a difference inyour allergy symptoms.
In summary, allergy shots are safe to take when you have a doctor or allergist who can administer it properly. While it takes time and patience, it has the advantage of continuing to work long after the treatments are done.
While it is not for everyone, it can provide relief for asthma suffers who cope with severe symptoms.
For more information on allergy shots for asthma, visit Asthma.com
All About Inhalers
Many people with asthma find fewer complications when they find a management plan that really works. Read The SAFE Asthma Treatment Guide and discover the four steps to controlling asthma.
With a little help from your doctor and the right plan of action, you can control your wheezing so that you can breathe easier.
And remember … any asthma treatment prescribed by a physician should always be taken as ordered, even if there are no symptoms. Your doctor is the gatekeeper to keeping you healthy.
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