Different types of allergy medications are available to treat a variety of allergy symptoms. It is very important that all allergy medications be taken as instructed and discussed with your doctor for side effects.
- Antihistamines: Treat allergic rhinitis which includes symptoms of sneezing, nasal congestion, post nasal drip, eye itching, and hives. They work for acute symptoms for an 8-12 hour duration of time and can used when symptoms occur for relief.
Examples Include: Brand name Zyrtec, Allegra, Claritin, and Benadryl. Generic names Certerizine, Diphenhydramine, Fexofenadine, andChlorpheniramine.
- Leukotriene Modifiers:Helps block inflammation and reactions through a leukotriene pathway. Prescription medications that can be taken daily for indoor and outdoor allergies and those with asthma. Symptoms involving inflammation are runny nose, congestion, asthma, and itching of eyes, nose, and ears.
Examples Include: Singulair (Montoleukast), Zyflo (zileuton).
- Nasal sprays: Many different types of nasal sprays are available for congestion, runny nose, post nasal drip, and nose itching. Some nose sprays have medicine called steroids that help with congestion due to inflammation. Other nasal sprays are available for runny nose, post nasal drip symptoms and nose itching.
Examples include: Nasonex, Omnaris, Flonase, Rhinocort, Astelin, Astepro, Patanase, and Nasalcrom.
- Eye drops: Various types of eye drops are available to help with watery, itchy, and dry eyes due to allergies.
Examples Include: Optivar, Zaditor, Alaway, Patanase, Patanol, Visine A, Opcon A, Cromolyn, ketotefin, Olopatadine.
- Steroid cream and anti-itch creams: Used to treat atopic dermatitis and eczema. Help with skin dryness, itching, scaling, and redness. Must be used only as directed by your doctor.
Examples Include: Hydrocortisone, Triamcinilone, Clobetasol, Elidel, and Protopic.
- Inhaled medications: Used to treat acute asthma, lung symptoms and inflammation.
- Bronchodilators: Used to treat asthma symptoms of shortness of breath, respiratory distress, wheezing, and coughing that can happen all of a sudden. Rescue medication to give immediate relief.
Examples Include: Ventolin, Pro Air, Proventil, Albuterol, and Xoponex.
- Inhaled Steroids:Prescription medication taken daily to control inflammation and prevent symptoms of asthma. Cannot be used for acute asthma symptoms.
Examples Include: Alvesco, Advair, Flovent, Pulmicort, and Symbicort.
- Immunotherapy: Allergy shots are the most effective way to treat allergies and their symptoms. It allows the immune system to develop tolerance by being repeatedly exposed to offendingallergens in slowly increasing concentrations.
Reveiwed and edited by NehaReshamwala MD.