Are you finding too many side effects or little relief in using over-the-counter pills, prescription medications or subcutaneous injections? West Vancouver Wellness Centre can help. We employ several treatment therapies that have proven safe and effective for adults and children that suffer from environmental allergies.
What is Sublingual Immunotherapy (SLIT)?
If you guessed by the name, sublingual immunotherapy is a type of therapy given orally, under the tongue. Over the course of a treatment, sublingual immunotherapy reduces the sensitivity of children and adults to certain environmental triggers. When compared to subcutaneous injections (allergy shots), there is a significant reduction in the chance of anaphylaxis shock, a rare but life-threatening condition.
How does Sublingual Immunotherapy Work?
Sublingual immunotherapy works by treating the underlying allergic sensitivities — not masking the symptoms. Sublingual immunotherapy is prescribed as liquid drops that you can take at home. These drops are placed under the tongue daily to interact with your immune system and decrease your allergic sensitivity.
Sublingual immunotherapy takes advantage of our immune system’s innate ability to develop immunologic tolerance to non-pathogenic allergens, such as those found in pollens, dust and pet dander. The allergen persists on the mucosal surface of the tongue and interacts with special immune cells called T-cells. Over time, and with repeat exposure, the T-cells modulate the allergic response by creating immune tolerance to the allergens for which you are being treated. Allergic symptoms (such as eczema, itchy eyes, nose and throat, etc.) will resolve as your underlying allergic sensitivities diminish.
As a safe and effective method of treating the underlying cause of allergies, sublingual immunotherapy is capable of modifying the natural progression of allergic disease. This progression can begin with allergic food sensitivities, asthma and eczema in young children and escalate through allergic rhinoconjunctivitis, seasonal allergies, chronic sinusitis and bronchitis in adults.
Is it Effective?
A recent study, published in the journal Allergy (2007: 62: 943–948), showed that a three-year course of immunotherapy had long-term clinical effects by significantly reducing the development of asthma in children with allergic rhinoconjunctivitis up to seven years after treatment. In a meta-analysis review of all studies on SLIT by the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology published in Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, (2007: 6: 1466–1468), 35% of studies resulted in significant reductions in medications and symptom scores.
Find Relief — at Last!
If you’re ready to begin harnessing the power of sublingual immunotherapy in reducing your sensitivity to allergens, contact West Vancouver Wellness Centre today!