Sublingual Immunotherapy—a Popular Alternative to Shots

In Central Europe, nearly half of all people receiving allergy treatment get it in the form of sublingual immunotherapy (also known as allergy drops). Though Americans have traditionally used subcutaneous immunotherapy (allergy shots), an increasing number of U.S. residents are turning to allergy drops for both safety and convenience.

allergy shots

Both allergy shots and allergy drops start with a “serum” containing common allergens mixed into a saline solution. As the body is continuously exposed to these allergens, it can develop an immunity to them (and stop reacting to them in ways that lead to allergy symptoms).

With shots, the serum is injected into the skin where it absorbs into the bloodstream. With drops, it is dispensed under the tongue and absorbed into the bloodstream through specialized oral cells.

Allergy drops have been shown to be safer than shots. For that reason, they can be taken at home rather than under direct supervision at the doctor’s office. They are also a popular choice for frequent travelers who might not be able to get to their doctor’s office consistently. Allergy drops can be taken any time and any place!

Allergy drops have also been shown to be safer for children. Whereas shots are usually reserved for kids age 7 and up, allergy shots have been shown to be safe for children younger than age 5.

Contact the Family Allergy Clinic to learn more about the benefits of sublingual immunotherapy.