4 Reasons Your Allergies Aren't Improving
Hounded by allergies? Find out what the problem might be.
Reason #2: Medication Mistakes
One of the biggest mistakes people make with their allergy medicine is
simply forgetting to take it. To prevent this common problem, Zitt simplifies
medication therapy when possible and has his patients link the time they take
it to another activity to help them remember. For instance, he tells the
patient to take a nighttime dose before brushing their teeth and put a morning
medication by their alarm clock.
Taking medicine properly is another challenge. And even little mistakes can
make a difference.
For example, the most potent medications used for nasal allergies are
intranasal steroid sprays, Zitt says. If used incorrectly or sprayed at the
wrong angle, however, they can be rendered ineffective. The same goes for
inhalers, which have to be activated and used properly.
The fix: Take all medicines exactly as directed. Some must be taken
daily or they aren't effective. Others should be used regularly when exposure
to an allergen becomes chronic, like visiting a relative with a cat, and
allergy shots must be received as scheduled.
Read the directions carefully before use. If a medication doesn't work like
it is supposed to, or if you're experiencing side effects, tell your doctor
exactly how you are using it and what you're experiencing. Also, make sure you
can tolerate the results and have appropriate expectations. Some patients will
take an intranasal steroid for two or three days, get no relief, and stop usage
even though it may take up to two weeks to reduce symptoms, Zitt says.
If cost keeps you from taking your medicine promptly, talk with your doctor
about it. Samples, lower-cost medications, and sticking with the drugs covered
by your insurance may help.