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What are the treatment options for environmental allergies?

Dr. Jeanne Morrison, PhD
Family Practitioner

Many doctors recommend nasal irrigation as a safe and effective method of treating allergy symptoms. With nasal irrigation, saline solution (salt water) is used to rinse irritants out of the nose. A small squeeze bottle or neti pot (small pot with a special spout) is used for this purpose.

Decongestants treat environmental allergies by temporarily relieving symptoms such as nasal and sinus congestion. They are available in oral form (pills and liquids), nasal spray and eye drops. You can get decongestants over-the-counter or by prescription.

Immunotherapy is also known as allergy shots. Immunotherapy works by exposing your body to regular injections of an allergen. The goal is to desensitize your body and lessen your reaction to the allergen. The shots are usually given for between three and five years. Immunotherapy is particularly effective for pollen, pet dander and dust mite allergies.

Some people believe that alternative therapies can treat allergy symptoms. Alternative remedies include acupuncture, hypnosis, probiotics, local honey and herbs. There is little or no conclusive proof that alternative therapies are effective in treating allergy symptoms, however.

Continue Learning about Environmental Allergies

What are the Long Term Benefits of Immunotherapy?
What are the Long Term Benefits of Immunotherapy?
What Role Do Genetics Play in Allergies?
What Role Do Genetics Play in Allergies?
What Are the Different Categories of Allergies?
What Are the Different Categories of Allergies?
Does Immunotherapy Work for Everyone?
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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.