Allergies- Nothing to Sneeze At!
Being plagued by the unbearable symptoms of seasonal allergies does not have to be a life-long battle. Whether it is your friend’s cat or the spring pollen that causes the sneezing, itchy eyes, runny nose, wheezing and more, a holistic approach will treat the underlying cause- the immune system.
It is suggested that 60% of the population suffer from some type of allergic response. As we subject our bodies and immune systems to more stress, this number is rising. In truth, anybody can be allergic to anything and the reactions can express themselves in any area of the body. The question remains, why are some people affected while others are left unscathed?
An allergic predisposition may be inherited if one of both parents has allergies. The 3 most common allergenic reactions know to be inherited are hay fever, asthma and eczema. A person with one or more of this triad is said to be “Atopic”. Atopic individuals have a strong family correlation even though the form may switch or even skip a generation. Atopic individuals have up to 50% more T-Helper cells (immune cells) and therefore react more rapidly to low levels of offending invaders. Studies also show that low levels of digestive enzymes and depleted levels of immune cells in the lining of the gut permit easier entry of allergens into the blood stream.
Any factors which impair immune function will predispose a person to allergies. These factors include stress (emotional or physical), poor nutrition, smoking, drugs (prescription or recreational) and over-consumption of artificial and processed foods.
Our immune system manifests the allergy symptoms as a way of detoxifying the body of what it sees as invaders. This response is not normal and occurs mainly in those who have a hyper stimulated or overly sensitive immune system.
Treating allergies with pharmaceuticals is a purely symptomatic approach with dependency on the drugs often occurring. There are many undesirable side-effects of the drugs which often lead to the need for more drugs to treat the side-effects. This cycle continues to weaken the immune system and the allergies tend to get worse each year.
The holistic approach to allergies is the rebalancing and the regulation of the over- stressed immune system through the use of herbs, nutritional supplements and nutritional changes. Once the immune system is functioning optimally, it will not continue to produce the same strong reactions and then allergies decrease and most times disappear.
During seasonal allergy issues, avoiding certain foods can dramatically help to reduce symptoms. The main foods to avoid if you are experiencing allergy symptoms include: wheat, sugar, dairy, peanuts, corn and soy. Patients often report a significant reduction in symptoms when avoiding these food triggers.
A netti pot can also be very helpful. Rinse nasal sinuses twice daily with warm water and ½ tsp. sea salt to help to clear sinuses of all allergens.
Dr Cobi’s Top Picks for Seasonal Allergies
- Allergiplex- Dissolve 1 under the tongue 1 time per week to prevent allergies or 1 time daily to treat allergies.
- Histaeze- This is one of my favourite products! Take 2 capsules 2 times daily to treat allergies. In many cases, this works better than most pharmaceutical allergy treatments.
- Quercetin Hi P- This compounded product (available to patients only) is the highest dose Quercetin product on the market. Quercetin is a natural anti-histamine.
- Hydrastis Nasal Spray- Spray 1-2 times into each nostril for immediate relief!
- Pleo Muc Eye Drops- Place 1-2 drops into each eye as needed for relief of itchy eyes.
- Allergy Desensitization Program- Sublingual Immunotherapy (SLIT)
Sublingual immunotherapy (SLIT) treats the cause of allergies by giving small doses of the allergen to the patient. Exposure to these small doses over time increases the immunity or tolerance to the allergens and reduces the allergenic symptoms.
HOW DOES SUBLINGUAL IMMUNOTHERAPY WORK?
Dr Cobi Slater has joined forces with a compounding pharmacy specializing in allergy desensitization. A customized formula is compounded for each patient. SLIT is given as drops under the tongue. The patient will take 1 drop under the tongue twice daily (that is it!). Research shows then when an allergen is presented this way, the immune system learns to tolerate the allergen. The result is less allergy symptoms when the body is exposed to the allergy source such as airborne pollen or pet dander.
SLIT OR ALLERGY SHOTS?
Like injection therapy, SLIT directly changes the body's ability to react with allergens. Allergy shots are effective, but need to be given in a physician's office. This inconvenience results in high drop off rates for many patients. Sublingual immunotherapy offers a great alternative treatment option for people reluctant or unable to undergo allergy shots.
WHAT ARE MY CHOICES?
Pre-seasonal: a quick buildup of antigen 30 to 60 days prior to and throughout the offending allergen season (this is done yearly).
Co-seasonal: Year-round treatment for an average of 2-3 years to eliminate allergy symptoms for good.
HOW LONG WILL IT TAKE TO SEE RESULTS WITH SLIT?
The vast majority of patients’ experience marked symptom relief within the first few months of starting treatment. As with all allergy immunotherapy, long term, lasting results require 2 to 5 years of treatment (average length of treatment is 3 years). Research shows that committing to the full therapy can result in permanent symptom relief. No more allergies!
SLIT IS PROVEN!
With over 60 clinical trials proving efficacy, endorsement from the World Health Organization, the World Allergy Organization and the Cochrane Collaboration, SLIT is proven to be effective, safe and well tolerated.
HOW DO I GET STARTED?
Book your appointment with Dr Cobi to discuss your custom compounded allergy desensitizing program.
Here is what a few patients had to say......
''My son absolutely refused allergy shots so we decided to try the drops. I can't believe the difference. He is no longer suffering at night with sneezing and itchy eyes and his snoring has stopped entirely.
- L. Martin, Calgary AB
"Thanks to allergy drops I no longer have to rely on antihistamines for relief of my grass and tree allergies. I can enjoy golf again."
- K Grant, Victoria BC
"I am so relieved and happy that I can now live allergy free with my dogs now that I am on the SLIT program!"
- M Cartin, Maple Ridge, BC