Sublingual immunotherapy (also known as SLIT)
What is sublingual immnotherapy? Is it right for you? Sublingual immunotherapy is an advanced therapy for Los Angeles allergy sufferers. Sublingual immunotherapy involves small doses of an allergen that are given to the patient to boost tolerance to the substance and reduce symptoms. Historically, the treatment for allergies involved avoidance of the offending substances, taking medications, or receiving allergy shots or injections. Now, the same beneficial therapy provided by allergy shots can be administered as drops under the tongue in the comfort and convenience of your home. (The term “sublingual” comes from Latin: “sub” meaning “under,” and “lingual” meaning “tongue.”)
Sublingual immunotherapy for allergies has been used successfully in Europe since the 1980s, and was recently introduced in the United States. The drops work in the same way as injections, by desensitizing you to the very substance that causes your allergy symptoms. With SLIT, we can treat a wide variety of allergies, including dust, grass and tree pollens, and animal dander.
Sublingual immunotherapy is very effective, and once prescribed, it can be administered right at home – you don’t need to come in to our office. Compare this with allergy injections, which begins with frequent injections of increased amounts of allergen extract, and then has a maintenance phase during which injections are given about once a month. Both shots and sublingual immunotherapy are just as effective and have been shown to provide long term improvement even after treatment has been completed.
This overview explains the process of immunotherapy as a treatment for allergies:
How Do I Know If Sublingual Therapy is Right for Me?
The first step is to perform allergy testing, to determine what substances may be responsible for your allergy symptoms. We then perform further testing, to determine how sensitive you are to those substances. Based on this information, allergy drops are custom made to treat your specific allergies.
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